LinkedIn Xing Facebook Instagram

Sustainability and controlling

Yvonne Wicke | 20. May 2019

The magic triangle of sustainability is becoming increasingly important.

It is about the equal consideration of economic, ecological and social aspects, which are increasingly being demanded of companies. Keeping an eye on this ensures the long-term trust of employees, customers, investors and society. In turn, a good reputation and the future viability of companies depend on this. These goals can be achieved with a successful sustainability strategy.

For many companies, the concept of sustainability is nothing new. Nevertheless, the importance of this topic has developed considerably in recent years. In particular due to the EU reporting obligation that has applied to more than 500 German companies since 2017. The pressure on professional CSR reporting systems is therefore increasing and extends to SMEs.

Sustainability is everyone's business

The importance and demands of sustainability have evolved. It once involved a rather one-dimensional charitable commitment by companies in the ecological or social field. Today, the topic has become a multidimensional management approach to the core business that affects numerous stakeholder groups. However, purely image- or market-oriented communication is not only insufficient these days, it can even damage a company's reputation under certain circumstances. For this reason, it must meet the diverse requirements of various stakeholders.

Sustainability management is the basis

The particular challenge lies in the development and implementation of sustainability management. A tailor-made and practice-oriented design lays the foundation for the future viability of the company and value-oriented brand management. Management, owners, specialists and executives are required to drive the project forward holistically.

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
  • Law and compliance
  • Administration and organization

Making goals measurable, achieving goals

The introduction of sustainability management also increases the demands on sustainability controlling. Once you have developed a sustainability strategy for your company, the question arises: "How can we ensure that we achieve 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 key financial figures, additional environmental and social indicators are added: CO2 emissions, differentiated energy consumption, employee structure, employee satisfaction and the proportion of women in management positions, for example.

The tools are not only important from an internal perspective, they are also increasingly becoming a must from an external perspective. For example, customers who request information about a company's sustainability performance, programs and standards in tenders. Or investors who demand that companies increasingly have appropriate measurement standards and measurable transparency in the area of sustainability. There is therefore a direct correlation with future credit conditions, as sustainability performance and risks are directly incorporated into an assessment.

Communicate transparently

The legislator will further tighten the requirements in the future due to socio-political interest. Employees will also have an influence. 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 and clear argumentation are increasing.

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

Sustainability controlling creates the basis and figures to be able to deliver facts promptly. However, it is also of great importance when it comes to keeping an eye on the company's profitability. Despite all efforts to achieve sustainability, influences on cost efficiency, competitiveness and market influences are of existential importance if the company gets into difficulties as a result of the measures.

In summary, we should not wait until you belong to a minority that refuses to engage in sustainable economic activity.

We wish you every success with this topic. Make your decisions - we will be happy to support you.

Free advice

We will be happy to help you with corporate management and data analysis.

This might also interest you.

You might also be interested in