As the urgency of doing business in an environmentally and socially sustainable way increases, so does the need to understand how well companies are performing. More than ever, the way buildings operate has a huge impact on the performance of any business.
Because ‘what gets measured gets managed’ tends to hold true, companies all over the world, big and small, are investing in measuring anything they can measure to collect tons of data. On one hand, we need transparent and comprehensive sustainability reporting to deliver an honest account of companies’ impacts and performance. On the other hand, sustainability ratings, assessments and certifications have become important tools in evaluating and synthesizing this information for customers, investors, and other stakeholders.
Through sustainability reporting, companies communicate their performance and impacts on a wide range of sustainability topics, spanning environmental, social and governance parameters. It enables companies to be more transparent about the risks and opportunities they face, giving stakeholders greater insight into performance beyond the bottom line.
As companies across the world increasingly embrace sustainability reporting, a number of standards have emerged that enable a wide range of stakeholders to more effectively assess and compare sustainability reports. The most widely adopted framework is the Global Reporting Initiative Standards. It is related to other forms of non-financial reporting, including triple bottom line reporting, and corporate social responsibility (CSR) reporting.
It is clear that the amount and depth of sustainability reporting will only keep increasing. The latest example of this is the EU taxonomy for sustainable activities which is profoundly changing the way companies define and report on the sustainability of their business. Far from perfect, but it forces companies to look at their operations from an angle that might spur new strategic business considerations.
As a result of these new requirements, the foundations for reliable and science-based sustainability information will become even more solid. Advanced reporting also means the expansion of sustainability themes across functions and businesses, bridging finance, product development, sales, maintenance and other teams. Inevitably, companies will need a whole new arsenal of capabilities and resources to respond to these new requirements. Looking ahead, we can provide more clarity to all stakeholders, smart use of everyone’s resources and ultimately, more successful decision-making based on relevant and timely information.
New construction and retrofit initiatives utilizing smart building technologies are making buildings more efficient, safer, and healthier for employees, all the while lowering costs. In addition to the benefit of cost reduction, organizations with strong sustainability track records can experience increased top-line revenue, as customers give buying preference to sustainability minded companies. Similarly, companies that make sustainability a priority can experience a boost in employee motivation and productivity. They can also attract better talent, as employees feel a stronger alignment between their own values and those of their employers.
However, most importantly, a smart building gathers the data that shows your commitment to your sustainability goals. A Smart Building brings sensor, network, compute, and software components together to automate building operations, helping forward-thinking organizations complete their sustainability reports.
Are you looking for ways how to use your building’s data in your sustainability reports?
At Koning & Hartman, we are helping our clients to do just that, and more: we can also provide you with the right hard- and software to start measuring. Get in touch!