Sustainability and ESG is not just about the environment. It’s about equality, community, governance and much more. But are you aware of the valuable progress you may already be making? We’ve collated a list of 12 ‘quick wins’ that count when it comes to assessing your impact.
- How extensive is your recycling?
1/4 of England’s waste is produced by enterprise organisations, and many business waste collection contractors provide recycling services as standard. Ask your provider for their sustainability statistics and see if they offer any further services – electrical equipment recycling, for example.
- Where are you investing your money?
As a business, it’s likely that you’ll have cash in the bank and investments in funds. For example, is your company pension invested in funds that are built on the performance of sustainable businesses? From climate change to equal rights, to animal welfare – it’s entirely possible that your company is already investing based on your values.
- What’s your policy on suppliers?
There’s a good chance that your company is also already choosing to trade with suppliers that share your values. For example, economic value, reduction of poverty, inequality and sustainability commitments are just a few things to consider. But in a nutshell, do you trade with companies that are committed to making a difference? If not, could you?
- How diverse is your workforce?
As a business in the 21st Century it’s likely that you’re already operating inclusively when it comes to age, physical abilities or disabilities, race, religion, gender, sexual orientation and cultural background. If not, you know what to do. Plus, the latest Mckinsey report found that companies with greater gender, ethnic and cultural diversity in corporate leadership roles are now more likely to outperform less diverse companies.
- What’s your policy on harassment and violent behaviour in the workplace?
Obviously, as a business you’re aware that a productive and safe setting where employees are not subjected to harassment, bullying or violence is essential. But do you have a policy emphasising your commitment to staff safety and well-being? It’s a quick, simple and worthwhile win.
- Do you support a charity?
From Comic Relief to your annual raffle, your business is probably already supporting charities. Research even suggests that 82% of consumers say that their purchase decisions are influenced by how philanthropic a business is. And so, supporting a charity is both an altruistic act and an incentive for consumers to back your business. Win, win.
- What’s your grievance procedure?
Whether it’s a concern, complaint, or workplace dissatisfaction, your business will probably already have a simple procedure in place that employees are familiar with. This counts towards your ESG commitment.
- Does your company recruit ex-offenders?
Your business may already provide access to employment for people re-entering society after prison. Providing ex-offenders with greater employment prospects can be a significant contribution to work-place inclusivity and wider social development – and it’s a worthwhile contribution to ESG.
- Do you offer an under-18s induction programme?
Providing young people with work experience opportunities contributes to local communities. Perhaps your business already introduces under 18s to the workplace so that they can get an idea of the environment, consider future careers and develop valuable skills to put on their CV.
- What’s your energy footprint?
Modern buildings are extremely energy efficient, so it’s likely that your workplace is already reducing emissions – speak to your proprietor or estate agent to obtain the rating breakdown. And don’t forget if you’re offering bike to work schemes or car share options that your employees will also be reducing their carbon footprint!
- What about your water usage?
Once again, modern workplaces are often equipped with water saving measures like smart showers or dual-flush toilets… If yours is one of them, it definitely counts towards your sustainability score.
- What is your staff code of conduct?
Your code of conduct gives a great insight into your company’s values, ethics and way of working. Plus, detailed rules and expectations on appropriate workplace behaviour helps to maintain a positive working environment and increase productivity. These policies also contribute towards your ESG standards.
Ultimately, it’s all about identifying your sustainable practices and sharing them with your stakeholders. And if you’ve spotted a quick win in this list that you hadn’t yet considered, then implement it! It’s really that simple.
Get a feel for our agency, our work and what we’re all about at https://sim7creative.co.uk/our-work/ And if you need a hand assessing your business’ impact then get in touch! firstname.lastname@example.org