As a professional services firm our environmental impact is small compared with many other industries. But our clients, our people and other stakeholders still expect us to minimise our impact, and as a responsible business whose operations ultimately rely on natural resources, we want to do everything we can.
So, minimising the environmental impact from our operations is one of our main sustainability objectives.
Our operational impact comes mostly from carbon emissions generated by business travel and by energy in our buildings. So, our carbon mitigation programme is central to our efforts, and we also offset our operational carbon emissions, as reported each year. We also work to reduce the waste we generate and the resources that we consume, such as paper and water.
Our environmental policy outlines our approach to managing and reducing our operational impacts and provides the framework for our environmental targets for 2013-2017. This year we’re reporting on our results against these targets, and are very pleased with what we’ve achieved.
We have an environmental management system which has been certified to the international standard ISO 14001 since 2008, for all of our UK offices where we have operational control.
We also engage our people to raise awareness of our internal sustainability issues and encourage them to take action to reduce their environmental impacts.
And we’re proud to have achieved a number of recognised standards in environmental management – particularly from the Carbon Trust and BREEAM. You can find out more about these in our credentials section.
We measure our progress against our environmental targets throughout the year and report externally at the end of each financial year in our Annual Report. Full results are in our operational scorecard.
Sustainability awareness and education
We launched a large scale sustainability programme in May 2011, 'Building our blueprint for better business', to which thousands of our people have ‘opted in’ to be kept up to date on sustainability issues.
Our blueprint programme has two key objectives:
Over the years, campaigns have focused on the use of online meetings as an alternative to avoidable travel, , how to improve our waste and recycling performance, and cycling to work, together with promoting social enterprises and social impact measurement as a key part of our Community Affairs programme.
We also developed an online training module to build a sustainability mind-set across the firm. Called ‘Think Sustainability’, the course was voted the best internal engagement project by the sustainability network 2degrees at their 2014 awards. Over 90% of our people completed the course, and every new joiner is asked to complete the training course. We plan to develop a second ‘Think Sustainability’ training course in the near future to further influence our people’s sustainability approach to their work.
We’re also shaping the debate on important environmental issues and collaborating with our clients on their environmental impacts.
For instance, building on our support to Puma’s ground-breaking environmental profit and loss account in 2011, we launched our Total Impact Measurement and Management (TIMM) framework in 2013 which goes a step further, helping clients to give a financial value to their total economic, tax, environmental and social contribution to society. In 2017 we’ve continued to help several clients to better understand their impacts, and reported on our own Total Impact for the fifth time, including expanding the scope of the Social Impact indicators we cover.