Many people first think of environmental protection, climate protection and decarbonisation when they hear the word “sustainability”. But sustainability is much more than that. The wide range is reflected in the ESG criteria. ESG stands for “Environment”, “Social” and “Governance”. It is not only about the “E”, but also about the “S” and “G”. It is only through the interaction of the three areas of environment, social affairs and corporate governance that a sustainable corporate orientation unfolds, which improves growth opportunities and financing advantages and makes the company more resilient. The individual weighting of the three areas differs depending on the sector and size of the company. For example, the area of “environment” can have a much higher relevance for an industrial company than for a service provider.

Many Sustainability Criteria are Rooted in SMEs

Medium-sized companies traditionally already fulfil many sustainability criteria in the areas of “social” and “governance”. The question is therefore not: What does the company have to do to become more sustainable, but: Which ESG criteria does it already fulfil? In order to make things transparent and create an awareness of where the company currently stands, a sustainability check offers orientation. It can give an initial overview as a quick check or provide clarity about the company’s sustainability status as a workshop. The results of the check act as a compass needle in the development of the further ESG roadmap. In most cases, the status quo analysis reveals that the company is already doing much more in terms of sustainability than it thought.

Between Aspiration and Reality: Feasible Solutions

Sustainability is a topic that permeates all areas of the company. The relevant aspects and performance indicators can be divided into sustainability criteria and thus into fields of action. These range from “strategy” to “employee rights” to “legal and directive-compliant behaviour”. In view of the countless possible sustainability initiatives and activities, the most important thing for SMEs is to ensure transparency and set priorities. THE MAK`ED TEAM analyses the company’s processes, values, activities or standards from an ESG perspective in order to bring together the various fields of action in a uniform and transparent ESG system and to prioritise relevant options. The analysis shows transparently in which fields of action which degree of fulfilment of the requirements exists. This results in the need for action. When setting up a sustainability strategy, the focus is on two core questions: What does the company have to do? And: What should the company do? In some areas, for example, a new orientation of activities is needed so that ESG criteria can be met. Or the analysis shows that completely new fields of action need to be added. The next step is to develop concrete recommendations for action. A clear roadmap is drawn up on the existing basis. The developed recommendations for action and their implementation are recorded in a transparent sustainability strategy.

Personnel, time, money: The desired transformation processes need resources. THE MAK`ED TEAM supports small and medium-sized enterprises in establishing sustainability management. Whether preparing for certification, introducing an equal pay model or reporting in a sustainable supply chain: we support companies in their transformation processes towards a sustainable and forward-looking corporate orientation. Whatever your relevant issues are: Our solutions are always pragmatic and aim at a resilient alignment of the company. Focused, structured and practical.

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