Audits and action planning to answer the big sustainability questions about your business
Step 1 - Define the "big" questions and the improvement plan
What do you want to know about your business and your supply chain? What are the big questions about them and what would “good” look like to you for each of them? Our experts can help you to define those questions, sometimes suggesting ones you hadn’t first considered.
These questions might include:
- How sustainable are your own operations?
- What room for improvement is there?
- How ethical is your supply chain?
- What improvements are needed to your packaging?
- What are the most common sustainability issues with our suppliers?
- How have these trends changed over the past five years?
- What is your energy and water consumption?
- What are the sources of your energy?
- How is waste managed in your organisation and in your supply chain?
Answers to these high level questions may have to come from non-financial audits of your business, from which you could define your plan of action. That plan could include:
- Decide what you need to find out in order to help you to answer the questions
- Work out who you need to ask
- Define the reports you’ll produce later, which will inform what the bench-marking audit should contain
- Design your audit template to get the right data back, including questions at the next level of detail below “the big ones”
- Schedule the audit and notify all stakeholders involved in the process
- Do the audit and create the action plan to address issues identified
Step 2 - Benchmark and plan for improvements
Conduct the first audit in order to define the benchmarks, where you are now in each of the relevant areas. The audit will get answers to the detailed questions to which you need answers and could be conducted on internal operations or those in your supply chain.
We would help you to analyse the data in the audits: the answers, the action points and how they have been addressed. Action plans would be generated automatically and would form the basis of the plan of improvements you need to make progress on sustainability. The action plans would be shared with stakeholders, who could input directly on the work they have conducted.
The action points would be started and, where possible, completed – or carried over to the next audit.
Step 3 - Re-Audit and compare
Once the improvement programme has reached its first stage of completion, you could re-audit using the same templates. This would generate new action plans, highlighting:
- What had been completed
- What was still outstanding
- Why some actions may not be feasible in the light of experience
It would also allow you to compare the Re-Audit against the benchmark, highlighting differences to show the results of the improvement programme to date.
Multiple audits could be viewed in one dashboard.