Starting your sustainability journey

What if more small and medium sized businesses (SBMs) channelled some of the same magic that helped leaders like Patagonia, Microsoft and IKEA develop successful sustainability programs? 

While big companies have been leading the way in corporate sustainability, it’s equally important for smaller companies to get on board. One essential tool to get started is a materiality assessment. In this blog we’ll explain what a materiality assessment is and why this is beneficial for your business, especially when you’re about to start your sustainability journey!

So, what’s a materiality assessment? It’s a process that helps businesses figure out which sustainability themes are most important to their operations and stakeholders. By evaluating the impact and significance of various sustainability themes, companies can identify the ones that really matter to them. The outcome of a materiality assessment is a Matrix as depicted below. 

But why should you bother with this? Don’t sustainability matters only concern big corporations? Not at all! SMBs can benefit from conducting a materiality assessment for several reasons:

  1. Meeting stakeholder expectations: Nowadays, customers, employees, investors, and regulators expect businesses to show their commitment to sustainability practices. By understanding the material themes, you can align your actions with what stakeholders want, which will boost your business reputation and brand value.
  2. Make better decisions: While larger companies often use materiality assessments to manage risks, SMBs use it to make better decisions. Why? Because you can’t afford to waste time and other resources on actions that do not generate value for your business.
  3. Gaining a competitive edge: Sustainability performance sets your business apart from competitors. By pinpointing material themes, SMBs can make the most of their strengths and align their sustainability efforts to attract customers, partners, and investors who value responsible business practices.

At founders of now, we’ve got the expertise and know-how to guide you through the process and help you gain a clear understanding of the sustainability themes that matter to your business the most. From collecting and analysing data to engaging with stakeholders, we’ll provide the tools and knowledge you need to tackle this assessment.

But we don’t stop there! We also bring an external perspective to the table. We’ll challenge your assumptions, spark new ideas, and gather insights from diverse stakeholders. By working together, we’ll ensure your materiality assessment captures a comprehensive view of your sustainability themes, empowering you to make informed decisions that align with your goals and stakeholder expectations.

Partnering with us means streamlining the assessment process, saving you time and resources. We’ll provide customized frameworks, methodologies, and best practices to meet your unique needs. Our work doesn’t end with a fancy PowerPoint presentation as we’ll work with you through your entire journey.