Study Outlines Benefits of Sustainability Reporting
Contributed by The Ashkin Group
Deloitte, which provides auditing, counseling, and financial and risk advisory services for companies worldwide, has just released a sustainability study entitled Sustainability Action Report: Survey Findings on ESG Disclosure and Preparedness.
Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) reporting, according to Steve Ashkin, the leading advocate for sustainability in the professional cleaning industry, "is becoming the primary way companies, especially public companies, report on their current and planned sustainability initiatives."
The emphasis of the Deloitte study was to point out how many larger companies are preparing for ESG reporting and what steps they are taking. Something more organizations, including investment companies, are now requiring.
An earlier study, published in March 2022, found only 21 percent of the 300 executives in the study had established working groups, made up of key executives in an organization, to focus on ESG.
However, this study, published in December 2022, found that number had nearly tripled to 57 percent.
"This is promising, and as more stakeholders and customers become more focused on sustainability, we can expect these [ESG reporting] numbers to grow," says Ashkin. "But one of my primary interests is why these companies are getting so much more focused on sustainability."
As to the whys, the Deloitte study points out the main benefits these organizations anticipate in becoming more sustainable and reporting about it:
• Talent attraction and retention. Fifty-two percent identify this as a key benefit.
• Efficiency gains. 52 percent.
• Enhanced trust among company stakeholders. 51 percent.
• Elevated brand reputation. 49 percent.
• Premium pricing (pricing products higher than comparable brands). 48 percent
• Risk reduction. 48 percent.
"Many other studies have been reporting similar findings for some years now," says Ashkin. "Ultimately, all these studies tell us what I have long believed: sustainability is a business opportunity, and this is true of large and small organizations."
Ashkin adds that the link between sustainability and risk reduction will likely become even more critical in the coming years.
"Climate change is increasing risk and uncertainty and is already having devastating impacts on companies and communities in the U.S. and around the globe. More sustainability-focused companies will be better able to weather these storms."