assess, measure, evaluation

Assessment: The Crucial 1st Step in Sustainability

Amongst the many lessons 2020 taught us, we learned a whole lot about the link between resilience and sustainability. The corporate world is increasingly confronted with the importance of sustainability and its role in transforming our economy for a greener, cleaner, and more equitable future. 

So why aren’t more organizations transiting into sustainability? 

It is not easy to make the transition for everyone. Professionals at the senior level of the organization often feel that these transitions require an insurmountable amount of work and often do not know where to start, which holds back organizations from taking any action at all. Organizations are pondering these questions: What is sustainability? How can we navigate it without feeling overwhelmed? Where and how do we even start improving on it?

To help them answer these questions, we developed a diagnostic tool for businesses and organizations to easily understand and assess their current sustainability level (for free!).

The Solution in a Simple Tool

english diagnostic tool radar graph

We developed the Sustainability Diagnostic Tool to help more organizations get started on their sustainability journey, by providing the assessment on their existing sustainability performance. The tool takes the user through 21 questions that expand on the 4 recognized themes of sustainability: Environmental, Social, Economic, and General. These questions are derived from the work of the Bureau de normalisation du Québec (BNQ)- a governmental standardization department, and the assessment of the results use the main aspects of sustainability reflected in international reporting standards such as SASB (Sustainability Accounting Standards Board), B Corp, and GRI (Global Reporting Initiative). 

The scope and structure of the diagnostic tool allows the user to get a holistic understanding of sustainability, while evaluating their organization’s performance in each of these categories. Our ESG strategy consultants use the results to gain a clear picture of the organization’s sustainability performance, and based on the industry, stakeholder interests, standards and science-based factors. We provide three prioritized sustainability-related risks or opportunities that the organization can start working on to improve their sustainability performance. Within the first few weeks of its launch, diagnostic users are already getting a better picture of how their organization can proceed in improving their sustainability.

What’s Next?

Once the initial assessment is done for an organization, the next step is to create meaningful narratives and a roadmap to navigate their sustainability journey. This is part of our Sustainability as a Strategy™ Framework; a five step framework to improve ESG performance and quantifyTriple Bottom Line Results: People, Planet, Profit. The Sustainability Diagnostic Tool is the entry point in this process. 

Bottom line

Sustainability solutions are not “one-size-fits-all”. The key to a successful sustainability transition is to build internal awareness: a first step is to identify areas of improvement with the help of the Sustainability Diagnostic Tool. Organizations will then have the ability to ask themselves the right questions that will eventually lead to integrating sustainability at the core level of their strategic decisions, ensuring long term resilience and success. 


On the Sustainability as a Strategy™ Framework:

After mapping the Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) baseline and the sustainability related risks and opportunities (R&Os) specific to that organization, the next step is to prioritize the R&Os and corresponding initiatives to address them, based on industry and stakeholder interests. 

After prioritization, organizations need to deploy these initiatives, and monitor these results with ESG metrics. Then, the organization is able to communicate those metrics and improvements through ESG reporting. Finally, the organization can take a leadership role to inspire and influence change among industry peers, cross-industry players and government policies as a recognized leader in sustainability.