Sustainability Audit – why your business should undertake

Oct 03

In recent years many companies have become more concerned with issues of sustainability and their impact on the environment. Whilst many new companies have been founded in order to cater to consumers and clients who value issues such as sustainability and environmental impact, a large number of existing companies have incorporated these values into their company identity.

Despite the fact that many companies want to become more ‘green’ and adopt new environmentally friendly processes, it can be difficult to know where to begin. In order to fully understand the company’s impact on the environment, it is often recommended that companies undertake a sustainability audit. Although this can be conducted in-house, many businesses tend to rely on external consultants like RSB Environmental to complete a sustainability audit on their behalf. Exactly what the sustainability audit covers varies depending on the type of business, the aim of the audit, and the consultant(s) carrying out the sustainability audit. Some companies may choose to commission a sustainability audit focusing solely on their carbon emissions or ‘carbon footprint’ whilst others may need to assess the potential sustainability of a new venture or investment. For companies aiming to devise an effective sustainability strategy, the most useful information will be found following a fully comprehensive sustainability audit.

You can begin by identifying areas where your company can reduce its carbon footprint and adopt more sustainable practices. But before that, you might need to calculate your corporate carbon footprint to measure all GHG emissions related to your business activities like the energy you use for lighting, company transport, and commercial processes. In that regard, Deedster and similar service providers can offer customized software that can measure carbon footprint. Further, based on the carbon footprint value, you can identify areas of improvement. This could include reducing energy consumption by turning off computers and lights at the end of the day, using electric vehicles for employee transport, and switching to renewable energy sources like solar power.

You can also reduce your carbon footprint by reducing the amount of waste produced in your office. Encouraging employees to be mindful of resource consumption, such as reducing paper usage, turning off lights and electronics when not in use, and minimizing food waste, can make a significant difference.

To further enhance waste reduction efforts, businesses can consider incorporating skip bins from essexcountyskips (or similar companies) into their waste management strategy. Skip bins provide a convenient and effective means to segregate waste materials properly — think recyclables and general waste. This ensures that a larger portion of the waste stream is diverted from landfills and reused, which in turn reduces the greenhouse gas emissions.

Taking these measures not only demonstrates a commitment to environmental stewardship but also sets a positive example for employees, clients, and other stakeholders, inspiring broader environmental consciousness within the community.

As society has become more aware of environmental issues, our expectations have risen in terms of corporate social responsibility. If a company ignores their environmental responsibility and continues to impact upon the environment in an unnecessarily harmful way it is likely that they will receive unwanted negative media attention in addition to the damage to their reputation. This alone can be persuasive enough for companies to commit to taking matters of sustainability serious and incorporating sustainability strategies within the business. Businesses can do this by utilising the help of companies like who offer a savings account that focuses on non-profit organisations and clean energy and climate change issues. This is a really good business model as it works with companies to make a concerted effort to operate in ways that enhance rather than degrade society and the environment.

A sustainability audit allows chief executives, managing directors and key decision makers to see what impact their business has on the environment and determine whether this could be improved if changes were made to the working methods within the company. Issues such as whether the company currently has sustainability issues among its core values will be assessed, as will issues such as stakeholder views on sustainability and the use of current company resources in terms of sustainability. Quantitative data such as energy consumption and carbon footprint can also be recorded and analysed as part of a sustainability audit.

Although the content of a sustainability audit may vary depending on the company, the information derived from a sustainability audit will always prove beneficial to those running the company. Often the data produced as a result of a sustainability audit is the only way to access crucial information regarding a company’s environmental impact and determine the company’s biggest and most damaging effect on the environment. Only by using this data in an appropriate manner can the company adopt genuine and effective techniques and strategies to reduce their negative environmental impacts and increase sustainability for the future.

Whilst addressing issues of sustainability may have once been optional for companies, the increasing amount of policy and regulation regarding corporate sustainability and tax incentives for greener companies coupled with increasing public awareness of the importance of sustainability means that companies can no longer ignore the issue. In order to ensure that management are aware of their economic and environmental responsibilities, a sustainability audit can be seen as essential for success in today’s economic and environmental climate.
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 specialises in Sustainability Services, focusing heavily on sustainability audit for business. For more information please visit.