NEW INDUSTRY INSIGHT BY BUREAU VERITAS EXPOSES THE NEED FOR BETTER KNOWLEDGE, FURTHER UNDERSTANDING, AND IMMEDIATE ACTION WHEN IT COMES TO SUSTAINABILITY REPORTING
Nov. 7 2022
Despite countless organisations being aware of the importance of responsible sustainability reporting, new industry insights reveal that many are still facing significant challenges when it comes to producing the complex data driven disclosures.
According to research1by Bureau Veritas, only a third (34%) of those surveyed currently publish a sustainability report, however, more than three quarters (76%) expect to produce one over the next few years.
When questioned on the drivers for businesses compiling such a report; increasing customer trust, enhancing shareholder value and ensuring regulatory compliance came out top.
The survey of 1,000 clients across varying sectors, also divulges that three quarters (75%) rate their management above average when it comes to engagement with sustainability reporting. Encouragingly, more than two thirds (68%) already have an in-house expert or CSR department to oversee their ESG strategy.
With mandatory assurance coming soon under the EU’s new Corporate Sustainability Reporting Directive, Bureau Veritas commissioned this global report to assess the sustainability reporting landscape across the world and advise on next steps in order to ensure compliance. Of those questioned, around a third aren’t even aware of any such initiative or legislation that will affect their reporting requirements.
Companies are still not well equipped to aggregate their ESG data with four fifths (81%) admitting they would benefit from more education on standards and good reporting practices. Topping the list of most required additional resources are knowledge, tools for emissions calculations, time and budget constraints.
Barriers for organisations producing the specific industry report include data collection, the complex number of frameworks surrounding it and insufficient internal resources.
David Murray, Technical Director for Sustainability at Bureau Veritas, comments: “We undertook this research to further strengthen our forward-thinking and ambitious five-year strategy focussing on maximising sustainability solutions for clients.
“Sustainability landscape reporting is a highly technical subject which is still evolving. It comes with many challenges including how to evaluate and adapt data collection to facilitate the results. Our survey clearly shows there is positive awareness on the impacts of reporting, however, there remains a lack of knowledge and understanding related to gathering intrinsic data.
Technical Director For Sustainability
The time for businesses to act on voluntary assurance is now, before it becomes mandatory and that is where our team of experts at Bureau Veritas can offer their expertise and advice as a third-party assurance service partner to help verify and process the report. We can help identify gaps in a lower risk environment than when it is driven by legislation.
As external advisors we are able to help navigate this difficult transition period for clients and advice how businesses can get started immediately by verifying their report voluntarily to be ready for compliance later on.
Encouragingly, half of those surveyed by Bureau Veritas are already seeking support from specialist consultants to help them navigate the reporting process. When asked about the drivers for third-party verification or assurance, the top reasons for investing were to ensure the accuracy, relevance, completeness and consistency of the information reported, to demonstrate the depth of commitment to the social and environmental accountability and to provide additional confidence for SRI (socially responsible investment) decision making.
To watch the on-demand webinar focussing on the findings from the Bureau Veritas sustainability reporting survey and results, click here
Bureau Veritas has experience and technical expertise in helping some of the world’s largest organisations improve their sustainability performance in a number of sectors.