Reporting done differently

Our 2021 annual report breaks from convention with a 3D virtual gallery that viewers can navigate through freely, exploring highlights of the past turbulent year
by Sophie Mackenzie

1px - linkfix

This year we wanted our annual report to reflect the seismic changes that had swept through the world since the onset of the pandemic, impacting everything from our interaction with people to our consumption of information. Our Marketing and Communications team brainstormed concepts that would achieve this, moving swiftly away from the default digital option to more radical thinking: what about a fully virtual experience featuring gamified navigation, 3D rendering, animation and video?

The end result, representing hours of development, filming and marketing work, is an immersive 3D virtual gallery, complete with videos ‘hung’ on the walls, so the viewer can select from whichever section catches their eye. Almost 30 videos of CISI department heads, filmed especially for the report, bring a personal perspective to the events and results of the year.

If you prefer, a PDF is available to download

In their own words

“Like many organisations, over the past 12 months the Institute has faced the challenge of first surviving and then managing in a Covid-19 pandemic environment,” says CEO Simon Culhane, Chartered FCSI, in his overview of the year. In a narrative interspersed with clips to illustrate points, he outlines the Institute’s changing priorities, how we rose to the challenges posed by the pandemic to support colleagues and candidates, and how we embraced technology to expand our global reach.

We also defined our purpose – To champion lifelong learning and integrity, raising individual standards of knowledge, skills and behaviour globally to enhance public trust and confidence in financial services – and Simon explains the work done to achieve this. And we evolved new principles and procedures, with a focus on equality and diversity. He ends with a message of hope, looking forward to meeting again in person.

Take a few steps across the gallery for a warm welcome from CISI chair, Michael Cole-Fontayn MCSI. There is room for optimism, he says, but also “an accelerating climate concern”. He echoes Simon’s emphasis on our purpose and commitment to diversity, and points to the work the Institute has done on mental health.

He thanks the CISI Board and the many volunteers who give their time freely to help the Institute support its members. “Never has the engagement and enthusiasm of our community of members, volunteers, trustees and staff been more important than it is today,” he says.

A global perspective

“The CISI’s international presence is pretty broad these days,” says global business development director Kevin Moore, Chartered FCSI, whose video highlights our extensive and growing international community. He speaks about our partnerships with other regulators around the world, highlighting the increasingly global nature of our education offer, particularly our work with students in India, thousands of whom have attended some of our virtual events.

He speaks about the improvement to our continuing professional development (CPD) over the year, when “geography became history”, making our offering “much fairer for our members globally, because all of our members were in the same boat”.

Kevin acknowledges how “tough and tragic” the past year has been, concluding with an expression of pride in the entire organisation, saying: “We didn’t know we could do it until we were forced to do it.”

To allow viewers to experience our global community for themselves, the virtual gallery has a globe at its centre, featuring international updates from our regional heads.

Raising standards

“Setting standards of professional excellence is at the heart of the CISI's work. Integrity is imperative within the financial services sector, as it is in all other sectors,” says Amrita Bhogal, professional standards and ethics manager. “Trust within financial services has consistently been low throughout the various sectors, and by increasing the integrity and ethical standards within the profession, we’ll be able to make a direct impact on that level of trust,” she says.

Amrita highlights our extensive CPD integrity offer, as well as our disciplinary processes, and the various virtual ethics events that took place over the past year.

“Integrity is doing the right thing when no one is looking,” she says.

ResilienceThe pandemic may have brought normal working life to an abrupt halt in the early months of 2020, but the CISI’s events programme was soon up and running again, as the events section of the immersive experience reveals. It shows highlights from a year of virtual awards, conferences, networking and webinars.

Our response to the pandemic encompassed the way we worked, educated, interacted and examined in 2020. It’s therefore only fitting that our reporting of the year should have been done differently, too, and we hope it offers real value to our members and partners.

Many thanks to our colleague Adnan for building the platform, to Dave, Alan, Anushka, Helen and Dilwar for working long hours to pull it together, and to Ricky and Ollie for working tirelessly through many hours of footage to create the slick professional presentations.

Seen a blog, news story or discussion online that you think might interest CISI members? Email

Published: 24 Sep 2021
  • Operations
  • Integrity & Ethics
  • International regulation
  • operational resilience
  • Purpose
  • reporting
  • international regulation
  • Events
  • Covid-19

No Comments

Sign in to leave a comment

Leave a comment