If an ESG Policy is not something currently on your radar as a business then chances are it very soon will be. ESG is the acronym for Environmental and Social and Governance and essentially an ESG policy outlines a company’s commitment to sustainability and societal impact.
The “E” mainly focuses on how the organisation impacts the environment and what it will do to help preserve it.
The “S” investigates the company’s relationships with other businesses and communities.
The “G” is concerned with the internal company’s affairs, Diverse boards and how it is being governed internally.
(Gihan Hyde, ESG Communications Consultant, Founder and CEO of Communique)
For those looking for guidance as to how to develop such a policy, there are a number of internationally recognised certification programs you can apply to join eg B Corps, or you could look to the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals for inspiration.
To date ESG policy has been a ‘nice to have’ but, increasingly, a robust ESG policy is becoming a must for a wide range of reasons
* To secure funding from financial institutions (84% of global investors and Asset Owners are currently looking into ESG when deciding how to invest).
* Legislation (In 2020 The EU taxonomy regulation passed into law, requiring every company in Europe to define its economic activities and how they are environmentally sustainable).
* For staff recruitment and retention
* Because customers are looking to their trusted brands to lead the way (75% of UK customers are modifying buying behaviour due to ethical concerns).
Fundamentally, businesses should implement a policy because they have ambitions to make a tangible difference to their wider community.
90% of people are in agreement that companies must not only say an ESG policy is beneficial, but also prove it. They need to ‘walk the talk’.
If you have an ESG policy then you should make sure that you communicate it, publicly stand by your commitments and use them as a source to inspire others. Great ways of doing this are a dedicated page on your site, updates within newsletters or a video/animated explainer that can be shared on social. Creativity is key to getting as wide an audience as possible but there is also is real momentum behind this movement
and customers and future staff alike are actively looking to source this information from brands – make sure it’s easy for them to do so.
As to when, well there is no time like the present! Creating a positive change within the industry you operate in, could position you as a market leader, showcasing your innovation and giving your customers reassurance that you care about the right things.
To talk ESG policies and how best to communicate them, drop us a line email@example.com