Sustainability and controlling

by | May 20, 2019

The magic triangle of sustainability is becoming increasingly important.

This involves the equal consideration of economic, ecological and social aspects, which are increasingly being placed as requirements on companies. Keeping these in mind ensures the trust of employees, customers, investors and society in the long term. In turn, a good reputation and the future viability of companies depend on this. With a successful sustainability strategy, these goals can be achieved.

For many companies, the concept of sustainability is not new. Nevertheless, the importance of this subject area has developed considerably, especially in recent years. In particular, through the EU reporting obligation for more than 500 German companies, which has been in force since 2017. Accordingly, the pressure on professional CSR reporting systems is increasing and extends to medium-sized companies.

Sustainability concerns everyone

The importance and demands of the topic of sustainability have evolved. At one time, it involved a rather one-dimensional charitable commitment by companies in the environmental or social spheres. Today, the issue has become a multi-dimensional management approach to the core business, touching numerous stakeholders. Nowadays, however, purely image- or market-oriented communication not only falls short of the mark, it can even damage a company’s reputation under certain circumstances. For this reason, it must meet the diverse demands of various stakeholders.

Sustainability management is the basis

The particular challenge lies in the development and implementation of sustainability management. With a precisely fitting and practice-oriented design, the foundation is laid for the future viability of the company and a value-oriented brand management. It is up to the management, owners, specialists and executives to drive the project forward in a holistic manner.

The introduction of sustainability management means that the following topics and areas are affected holistically.


  • Strategy
  • Human Resources
  • Training and qualification
  • Purchasing and procurement
  • Distribution
  • Production
  • Innovation Management (F+U)
  • Quality and risk management
  • Controlling
  • Environment and energy
  • Communication and marketing
  • PR and public relations
  • Legal and Compliance
  • Administration and organization

Making goals measurable, achieving goals

With the introduction of sustainability management, the demands on sustainability controlling are also increasing. Once you’ve developed a sustainability strategy for your business, the question is:” How can we make sure we meet our goals?”

Only what is measured is done” applies here: In sustainability controlling, you use the right key figures to ensure that you successfully implement your sustainability strategy and achieve your goals.

In addition to financial indicators, additional environmental and social indicators are thus added: CO2 emissions, differentiated energy consumption, employee structure, employee satisfaction and the proportion of women in management positions as examples.

The instruments are not only important from an internal point of view, they are increasingly becoming a must from an external point of view as well. For example, customers who request information about a company’s sustainability performance, programmes and standards in tenders. Or investors demanding that companies increasingly have appropriate measurement standards and measurable transparency around sustainability. This means that there is a direct link with future lending conditions, as sustainability performance and risks are directly incorporated into an assessment.

Communicate transparently

Due to the socio-political interest, the legislator will further tighten the requirements in the future. Employees will also have an impact. Many younger employees and applicants in particular expect companies to work sustainably, and they also expect transparency. As they are well connected in social networks, the requirements for transparency and measurable verifiability or clear reasoning increase.

Your company can gain reputation and, most importantly, become more credible in its sustainability efforts. The reputation gain can also have a positive impact on your company and market values.

Sustainability controlling creates the basis and figures to be able to provide facts in a timely manner. But it is also of great importance when it comes to keeping an eye on the profitability of the company. With all efforts for sustainability, influences on cost efficiency, competitiveness as well as market influences are of existential importance, if the company gets into difficulties due to the measures.

To sum up, we do not want you to wait until you are part of a minority that refuses to accept sustainable management.

We wish you much success with the topic. Make your decisions – we will be happy to support you.

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