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Why You Should Go Beyond Regulation

By Zuzana Struharova, Senior Sustainability Consultant


In January 2024 the first companies will have to start compiling data for their 2025 reports, under the new Corporate Sustainability Reporting Directive (CSRD). It is a big step forward for sustainability reporting in Europe and globally.

We understand it’s a big step forward for businesses as well. Most companies feel overwhelmed by the scope of these new regulations and the new practices and processes they will have to adapt. Navigating in these waters can be daunting and that is why we always recommend our clients to be proactive rather than reactive.

To make sure you are ready for any future regulations, here are three practical tips to get you started.


#1 Make use of existing resources and frameworks


By now, a multitude of different sustainability reporting frameworks and standards have been developed. Choose the one that best fits your reporting needs and the stakeholders you are engaging with.

You can then use the reporting framework as a guide to understanding what to disclose and how to report, making the transition to CSRD easier.

For example, the GRI Standards outline a robust approach to selecting, managing and reporting on material issues across an organisation’s ESG impacts, from strategy, ethics and integrity to materials, energy, waste, labour practice and diversity.

The United Nations Global Compact (UNGC) is a voluntary initiative launched by the United Nations to support companies being a force for good. The framework is a call to action for  organisations to fully  integrate and align the UNGC principles into organisational strategy, operations  and stakeholder  engagement.

Organisations need to report on  the 10  guiding principles  which address 4 key themes:  human rights, labour,  environment and anti-corruption.


Reporting Frameworks
#2 Take inspiration from other businesses


Sustainability reporting helps you communicate your efforts, and many organisations have been reporting regularly over the years. You can look at the reports of other organisations as a source of inspiration, and better understand how similar companies address environmental, social and governance issues.

Thus, sustainability reporting becomes a catalyst for continuous improvement, encouraging organisations to learn from their peers and collectively work towards a more sustainable and equitable future. Once your first report is out, you can also contribute to the fostering culture of responsible business practices.


#3 Utilise employee insight


Employees can provide valuable insights to shape an organisation’s sustainability strategy.

By actively engaging employees, businesses can gain a deeper understanding of their current impact, identify potential areas for improvement, and determine the focus of their sustainability efforts.

For instance, conducting internal surveys as part of materiality assessments allows organisations to gather employees’ perspectives on what actions matter the most.

This inclusive approach not only enhances the quality and relevance of sustainability reporting but also instils a sense of ownership and responsibility among employees, fostering a culture of sustainability from within. As a result, sustainability reporting helps align business goals with the values and priorities of the workforce.


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