5. Evaluate and Take Measures
In order to develop and ensure that your company is focusing on the right issues, it is important that it evaluates its work. If you have set measurable goals, it will be easier to demonstrate the outcomes of your work. Get your employees involved and regularly evaluate what works well and what needs to be addressed. Also, get external stakeholders involved in the process through, for example, a customer survey on the brand before and after the implementation of sustainability work.
As your company's circumstances are constantly changing, it is important that the analysis of risks and opportunities conducted regularly. In the same way, you will continuously develop the financial goals of the business, your company’s sustainability work needs to be evaluated and developed alongside economic tasks. This will give you an idea of how the financial performance of the company relates to its sustainability work
Reporting according to legislation
As stipulated in the Annual Accounts Act (Swedish only), depending on the size of your company, you may be required to file a report on the company's sustainability performance. On 1 December 2016, a new law came into force, which stipulates that some companies are required to report how the business handles issues and consequences relating to the environment, social conditions, labour legislation, anti-corruption and human rights. All companies that exceed at least two of the following three boundary values are subject to this legislation:
Average number of employees during the financial year ≥ 250
A balance sheet totalling in excess of SEK 175 million
Net sales in excess of SEK 350 million
For more information on how sustainability performance should be reported, and any exceptions, please refer to the FAQs dealt with in Sustainability Reporting according to ÅRL (Swedish only)
Even if the company is not legally required to submit a report, you may still choose to report on the company’s sustainability performance. This is a way of showing stakeholders how the work is being carried out and which results are being achieved in the area of sustainability. Many companies see the benefits of this and feel more motivated when they can report on their work. Below are some auditing tools you may find useful:
Communication on Progress (COP)Progress – if your company has joined the Global Compact, it is committed to reporting its efforts to the Global Compact.
Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) – The most common global standard for sustainability reporting.
International Integrated Reporting Councils (IIRC) – a framework for integrated reporting.
Human Rights Reporting and Assurance Frameworks Initiative (RAFI) – Assists companies in reporting their work on human rights in a structured way.
If you want to know more about this subject area, many organisations offer training on how to conduct sustainability reporting.