There is no time like the present to focus on ESG, with the Energy Crisis and Global Warming reaching a boiling point, the recommendations from last year's IPCC Report need to be implemented.
Investing in sustainable and renewable energy to reduce greenhouse gas emissions is the best way to resolve this. However, there are other methods that can make a difference to your ESG practices.
What Should Your ESG Plan Include?
Firstly, you should ensure you are fully aware of what ESG means! Briefly, it is the concept that there is an ethical way to do business, which prioritises the environment and people. This means you try to limit the negative impact your organisation has on global warming and try to maximise the positive effect you have on your stakeholders, local community and employees.
Your ESG plan should be sector specific so you should know what is relevant to your organisation. Some industries already have overarching recommendations, for example the Housing Sector has the SRS. There is no point in concerning yourself with the water wastage of cottons if you are an insurance firm!
The best ESG plans have both long and short term goals. What can be quickly implemented and what needs more planning?
How To Make Sure That Your ESG Plan Works:
There is really only one way to do this: ESG Reporting! Regular evaluation of your processes will allow you to determine what is effective and what needs improvement.
Here are our top tips for improving your ESG Plans:
1) Make Sure You Have A Clear Budget:
Ambiguity is never useful but particularly not when it comes to ESG planning. You need to make sure you know how much money you have to play with and allocate it to the areas that are most relevant for your organisation.
If you are a local company then it is more useful to spend it on local rather than international projects. If you have factories then it is worth ensuring their environmental offset is minimal rather than sponsoring a small town football team. That being said, there is no reason why you can’t do both if you have the money!
Having a strong ESG plan can improve your financial performance in the long term by attracting ESG investments. That’s why you need to be clear on your financial position at the start.
2) Hire A CSO:
Hierarchy is always important for effective governance. The G in ESG is often overlooked but having a Chief Sustainability Officer will ensure that your ESG plan is governed effectively. It will also show your investors that you are taking ESG seriously!
3) Set Progressive Goals:
Structure is essential for an effective project. This will allow you to focus your energy on actionable goals, and allow for action items to be set out from the get go. As we’ve already mentioned, it is crucial to have both short and long term targets for ESG. ESG is not an item that can just be ticked off and completed but rather a lifestyle change for your business.
4) Invest In Technology:
Technology can play an essential role in your ESG plan. Replacing physical materials with software can reduce your waste materials and minimise supply chain challenges.
In the long term, this will help the switch to hybrid work which you may have already embraced as part of the ‘new normal’. Technology is also the way forward when it comes to energy savings, investing in modern equipment tends to improve your energy savings rating!
5) Monitor Progress frequently:
Reporting on ESG often will help you stay on top of things! You want to make sure that you have the most engaging ESG report possible so your shareholders will value your efforts.Your ESG story is important and so is your sustainability reporting!
How Can Convene Help You?
Convene ESG is designed to streamline your ESG reporting processes.
With Convene ESG you can compare benchmarks, organise your report, assign sections, automate reminders and input your ESG data and the solution will create a word document ready to publish or edit as necessary!
We are currently working to develop Convene ESG to include as many standards as possible, but are already fully operational for the SRS, TCFD and GRI. Please do not hesitate to contact us regarding your organisation’s relevant standards!
We are working in close collaboration with a number of existing Convene housing customers including Orbit and Cartrefi Conwy as part of our early adopters programme. Through their valuable feedback, we will together continue to develop and fine-tune our platform, delivering a robust end-to-end ESG experience.