The Communication on Progress (CoP) in Brief

UPDATE: The enhanced Communication on Progress (CoP) is coming in 2023

We are excited to announce the launch of a new Communication on Progress (CoP) platform coming in 2023. The enhanced Communication on Progress offers many benefits to participants. Please refer here for an informational note on the revision of the Communication on Progress. 

The Communication on Progress in 2022: For 2022, UN Global Compact participants can choose to: a) volunteer to disclose using the enhanced CoP by participating in the Early Adopter Programme, or b) continue using the current CoP format and deadline schema.  

a) Early Adopter Programme: Participants interested in disclosing via the enhanced CoP already in 2022, can join this programme and have the opportunity to also help test the enhanced digital platform ahead of its implementation for all participating companies in 2023.  For more information including on how to participate please visit our Early Adopter Programme webpage.

b) All other participating companies of the UN Global Compact: For companies not participating in the Early Adopter Program, submissions in 2022 should be made in alignment with the current CoP policy and deadlines. Please see the section below ‘Information on the current Communication on Progress’ for all details on the present CoP.  

For all information on the enhanced CoP, please visit the following links:

Information on the Current Communication on Progress

Submitting an annual Communication on Progress (CoP) is at the heart of your company’s commitment to the UN Global Compact and provides valuable information to your stakeholders. The overall format of a CoP is flexible and CoPs can be prepared in any language as long as they meet the minimum requirements below. Because our participants are all at different stages in their sustainability journeys, CoPs are categorized into three differentiation levels based on the depth of their disclosure. We also collaborate with other frameworks — for example, the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) — to ensure that the standards are aligned and that meeting the requirements of one framework helps to comply with the others.

Three Minimum Requirements

The current CoP Policy sets out key information including the minimum requirements for each CoP:

  1. A statement by the Chief Executive expressing continued support for the UN Global Compact and renewing the participant’s ongoing commitment to the initiative
  2. A description of practical actions the company has taken or plans to take to implement the Ten Principles in each of the four areas (human rights, labour, environment, anti-corruption)
  3. A measurement of outcomes

The Communication on Progress(CoP) Policy is available in multiple languages in our library. The updated CoP policy will be published in 2022 in preparation for implementation of the enhanced CoP in 2023. 

Differentiation Levels

Based on a company’s self-assessment, each CoP falls into one of the following differentiation levels:

  • GC Advanced: CoPs that qualify as GC Active and, in addition, cover the company’s implementation of advanced criteria and best practices
  • GC Active: CoPs that meet the minimum requirements
  • GC Learner: CoPs that do not meet one or more of the minimum requirements

How are CoPs Used?

CoPs are made publicly available on the website of the UN Global Compact at the moment they are submitted by the participant, enabling companies to communicate their efforts to support and uphold the Ten Principles of the UN Global Compact. Recent growth — both in terms of the sheer number of CoPs submitted and their sophistication — is largely driven by demand from key stakeholders including investors, civil society, Governments and consumers. CoPs provide stakeholders with information to make informed choices about the companies they interact with and stakeholder vetting is a cornerstone of transparency and disclosure as a means of driving performance. Use the participant search to find any CoP.

Learn how to create and submit your CoP »

A message from Sanda Ojiambo, CEO & Executive Director of the UN Global Compact on the enhanced Communication on Progress

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