June 1, 2022
- Manulife’s Impact Agenda puts in place a new structure for how the company will tackle key societal and environmental issues using its business expertise
- In the new Manulife survey conducted online by The Harris Poll, 94% of adults in Asia (defined as those ages 18+ in Hong Kong, Indonesia, and Malaysia) have concerns about the future of society, with their top three concerns being: economic inequities (67%), the health of the planet (56%), and the lack of access to essential health care services (49%)
- Roughly 7 in 10 (71%) of adults in Asia say its more important for companies they do business with to commit to sustainable operations now than it was two years ago
- Only 22% of adults in Asia believe their financial situation is better off today compared to two years ago, and more than half (57%) do not believe it will improve two years from now
- 74% of adults in Asia say it is more important that companies they do business with commit to the health and wellbeing of the communities in which they operate now compared to 2 years ago
Hong Kong – Manulife today announced the launch of its global Impact Agenda, which guides how the company makes decisions about the future of its business. This includes innovations in products, services, community investments, and decisions around thought leadership, advocacy, and public policy — with the ultimate goal of addressing key societal and environmental issues with its business expertise.
The Impact Agenda is implemented across every division and geography of Manulife’s business through strategic initiatives focused on shared value that drive toward its overall mission: Decisions made easier. Lives made better. The concerns identified in the survey commissioned by Manulife and conducted by The Harris Poll among over 3,000 Asian adults are being addressed by Manulife’s Impact Agenda across three interconnected pillars — empowering health and wellbeing, driving inclusive opportunities, and accelerating a sustainable future — enabling the organization to actively set commitments that channel Manulife’s values while also tracking its progress against these goals, year-over-year.
The survey uncovered that 55% of adults in Asia believe the health of the planet is worse off today compared to two years ago, while 41% believe it will be worse two years in the future. Only 22% believe their financial situation is better today compared to two years ago, while over half (57%) do not believe it will improve in two years from now. Furthermore, given the state of the current economy, 74% are concerned they won’t be able to achieve all their financial goals.
“At Manulife, we are uniquely positioned to help protect and preserve our planet, support health, and wellbeing, and contribute to the communities we operate in,” said Damien Green, President & CEO, Manulife Asia. “We have an incredible foundation of work and expertise in a wide variety of areas that relate to critical ESG topics. At our core, our products and services provide a societal good – connecting families in Asia with health and wealth protection. The launch of the Impact Agenda serves as our North Star – guiding our global organization in areas where we have the greatest ability to affect change and deliver on decisions made easier and lives made better for the global community we serve.”
The international survey developed by Manulife and The Harris Poll echoes the need for ESG commitments that drive value across stakeholder groups. According to the poll, 94% of adults in Asia have concerns about the future of society, with their top three concerns being: economic inequities (i.e., income and wealth inequality threaten prosperity for all) (67%), the health of the planet (56%), and the lack of access to essential health care services (49%). These findings demonstrate the importance of actions and goals associated with Manulife’s three interconnected pillars:
Empowering Sustained Health and Well-being
The results also reveal that more than half of adults in Asia are concerned about staying healthy as they age (56%) and feel companies must help employees and customers make healthier behaviour choices in order to be successful in the future (55%). In addition, 74% believe it’s more important that companies they do business with commit to the health and wellbeing of the communities they operate in now compared to 2 years ago. Manulife is dedicated to making healthier behaviour choices easier and more accessible while providing advice and solutions that drive financial security.
Working with its partners, Manulife has delivered high-impact initiatives, including our second “MOVE for GOOD” challenge that motivated our customers collectively to walk 100 million steps to unlock a donation that encouraged underserved children in Hong Kong to be more active. While the company has made actions within this area of focus, it has set goals to grow its impact – including expanding Healthy Building Certifications for key Manulife Investment Management managed Real Estate properties and scaling its behavioural insurance platform – Manulife MOVE – in Asia.
Driving Inclusive Economic Opportunity
This pillar is focused on accelerating the upward mobility of underrepresented groups and contributing to making financial solutions more accessible to everyone.
In the Philippines, Manulife has a well-established financial literacy program – Peso Smart – which began in 2017. The program continues to evolve, including addressing the demands of the need for remote learning throughout the pandemic and expanding its school-connected program to six public elementary schools across four cities in the 2021-2022 school year, providing a head start in financial literacy for children.
According to the Manulife/Harris Poll survey, more than half of adults in Asia (55%) note companies must offer equal pay and gender equality in the workplace to be successful in the future. In Asia, 70% of Manulife’s top-performing agents—members of the Million Dollar Round Table—are women. Manulife has also committed to increasing women’s representation globally at the AVP level to 40% and at the VP+ level to 32% by 2022.
Accelerating a Sustainable Future
This pillar is focused on two key objectives: supporting the transition to a net-zero economy as well as protecting and growing the value of nature-based solutions. According to the Manulife/Harris Poll survey, a majority of adults in Asia (71%) believe it is more important that the companies they do business with commit to sustainable operations now compared to two years ago. Manulife has already delivered on the first phase of its Climate Action Plan, a robust and long-term commitment to reducing our environmental footprint, supporting the transition to a net-zero future, and investing in climate change mitigation and resilience.
This work benefits business while also benefiting the planet and people around the globe. To learn more about the commitments made by Manulife, and to track progress on our goals, visit Manulife.com/Impact.
About the Manulife/Harris Poll survey
This survey was conducted online by The Harris Poll on behalf of Manulife from April 18-22, 2022 among 3,051 Asian adults ages 18 and older in Hong Kong (n=1,007), Indonesia (n=1,040), and Malaysia (n=1,004). The sampling precision of Harris online polls is measured by using a Bayesian credible interval. For this study, the sample data is accurate to within + 2.8 percentage points using a 95% confidence level. For complete survey methodology, including weighting variables and subgroup sample sizes, please contact Shabeen Hanifa or Augustine Kwan.
Manulife Financial Corporation is a leading international financial services provider that helps people make their decisions easier and lives better. With our global headquarters in Toronto, Canada, we provide financial advice and insurance, operating as Manulife across Canada, Asia, and Europe, and primarily as John Hancock in the United States. Through Manulife Investment Management, the global brand for our global wealth and asset management segment, we serve individuals, institutions, and retirement plan members worldwide. At the end of 2021, we had more than 38,000 employees, over 119,000 agents, and thousands of distribution partners, serving over 33 million customers. Our principal operations are in Asia and Canada, and the United States, where we have served customers for more than 160 years. We trade as 'MFC' on the Toronto, New York, and the Philippine stock exchanges and under '945' in Hong Kong. In the previous 12 months we made CAD$32.7 billion in payments to our customers.
Not all offerings are available in all jurisdictions. For additional information, please visit manulife.com.
+65 8666 8621
+852 6772 8037