Business Sustainability Services – maximising effectiveness
With increasing pressure from the government, regulatory bodies and the public, businesses are keen to be perceived advocates of sustainability. However, the implementation and management of sustainability strategies and techniques can require a considerable amount of research, understanding and expertise. The range of sustainability services available to businesses is continually expanding and as pressure grows, companies are relying on external sustainability service companies to ensure they are adopting the best practices for their business.
There are various services which fall under the category of sustainability services and each offer varying benefits to businesses. However, it is the training and education offered as a sustainability service that can often have most impact on businesses and can lead to the increased use of additional sustainability services. Whilst many companies opt to use sustainability services to train staff and educate stakeholders as to the positive effects of their sustainability policies, effective training can begin before a sustainability policy has even been implemented. For example, key decision makers may simply be unaware of their corporate responsibility or crucial regulatory policies that may impact on their management of the business. Similarly, the importance of sustainable business practices to consumers and the potential economic impact on the business is often presented to business managers following market research into consumer attitudes to sustainability. Training and education is, therefore, a key sustainability services that often takes place throughout the introduction, implementation and monitoring of sustainability policies and strategies.
Whilst sustainability audits provide a useful method of obtaining data relating to a company’s current commitment to sustainability or energy consumption, other sustainability services enable the company to make the changes necessary to improving sustainability and reduce unnecessary energy consumption or decrease their carbon footprint. Sustainability service providers can highlight the risks of current sustainability policies in economic and environment terms as well as placing the current business activities in context in terms of sustainability.
In addition to this, sustainability services allow a business to access expert advice regarding what options they have to become more sustainable and more environmentally friendly. Risk analysis can then be undertaken to assess the potential impact on the business, the local economy and the environment in order to determine the most appropriate and effective course of action. Should the business simply wish to acquire information and advice in the form of sustainability services they can do so but many businesses rely on external sustainability services to implement and monitor new policies and strategies also. This ensures that changes are quantifiable and can be relayed to staff, stakeholders and the public to increase awareness of the brands commitment to sustainability. The use of sustainability services can even extend to using marketing professionals experienced in creating and branding a company as sustainable and environmentally friendly.
The use of sustainability services to increase sustainability, positive environmental impact and highlight corporate social responsibility not only achieves the benefits that are inherent in these principles and practices. The economic benefits and the positive impact on brand and company reputation gives both short and long term advantages to the business. The advantages of incorporating sustainable practices within the business and the negative effects of failing to do so highlight the importance of implementing appropriate sustainability and corporate social responsibility strategies. The use of sustainability services can maximise the effectiveness of a company’s efforts to increase sustainability and ensure cost effective methodologies and processes are used, resulting in increased economic and environmental success.
HW Fisher & Company is a commercially astute organisation – ranked as a mid-tier top 25 UK chartered accountancy firm, with a personal, partner-led service aimed at entrepreneurial small, medium enterprises (SMEs), large corporates and high-net worth individuals. HW Fisher specialise in Business Sustainability Services, focussing heavily on sustainability audits. For more information please visit http://www.hwfisher.co.uk/sustainability