At Total, we aim to operate sustainably in all of our host countries, but this can only be achieved with our stakeholders' support. That is why we have designed a dedicated community engagement strategy based on dialogue with local residents and public- and private-sector players, allowing us to work together to achieve shared development.
A community engagement strategy based on dialogue
For our operations to grow sustainably, they must be aligned with the development priorities of our local stakeholders. This is why it is essential to establish effective dialogue, which helps identify how to satisfy everyone's needs effectively, build mutual trust and form long-term relationships.
SRM+: Helping to build a culture of dialogue
In 2006, in response to the question of how to manage stakeholder relations, we introduced our own in-house method known as Stakeholder Relationship Management, or SRM+. Used across all of our businesses in some hundred entities, SRM+ is designed to:
- Identify and map our stakeholders.
- Plan meetings with stakeholders to understand their perceptions and issues.
- Devise action plans for building personalized, long-term relationships.
On a day-to-day basis, our Community Liaison Officers (CLOs) play a crucial role in building constructive, lasting relationships with residents. CLOs are chosen from the local community so that they speak the language and are familiar with local customs. Trained to understand oil industry culture, they are responsible for fostering dialogue between affiliates and neighboring communities and thereby facilitating local integration. We also pay special attention to indigenous and tribal peoples. A dedicated charter notably encourages affiliates to call in experts to identify and understand the specific characteristics and expectations of the groups in their area.
Anticipating, reducing and offsetting the impact of our operations
The dialogue stage helps us identify any impacts our operations may have and come to a better understanding of the local socio-economic environment. In addition to this, we carry out baseline surveys and impact studies for each project to identify the potential risks for the community and determine ways to prevent, reduce or offset them. To assist us in this task, we call on the talents of CDA Collaborative Learning Projects, an independent non-profit organization specialized in economic and social development. CDA's reports on our operations are available online.
Given that road transportation plays such a major role in our business, we have made road safety one of our priorities in terms of prevention. We run road safety campaigns for the general public as well as regularly inspecting our trucks and drivers.
Nevertheless, studies cannot predict all eventualities. For this reason, we implement grievance mechanisms whereby local communities may alert us to any unforeseen or overlooked problems after they occur. In all of our affiliates, complaints can be received and handled directly with the help of specific guides and resources, or indirectly through our CLOs.
Creating value sustainably with local content and improved access to energy
Our local value creation strategy is based on two strong commitments:
- Developing local content: This includes creating jobs, transferring skills, contributing expertise that benefits the local and national industrial fabric, improving knowledge through training, and purchasing goods and services locally. With this approach, we can make a lasting contribution to the social and economic development of our host countries.
- Extending access to energy: We develop innovative solutions to help as many people as possible gain access to safer, cleaner, more competitive and all-around better energy.
To quantify our strategy and measure its effectiveness, we track our initiatives using performance indicators and publish the results in an annual report. These indicators have been refined since 2013, with particular attention given to effective dialogue, impact management, social and economic development projects and access to energy.