Investing in companies that have embraced environmental, social and governance (ESG) standards is booming. Research shows the number of global ESG funds grew to 5,932 as of December 2021, up from 4,153 at the end of 2020 and represents investments valued at more than $2.7 trillion.
Today’s socially conscious and forward-thinking organizations might want to catch this fast-moving ESG train, and would be wise to explore how environment, health and safety (EHS) and ESG can together drive better business results.
It’s timely then that the current state of EHS and ESG adoption across Europe should be assessed to better understand how European businesses are progressing. Intelex’s European team undertook a survey of more than 700 EHS and ESG professionals from 10 European countries with respondents representing a wide range of industries – from energy and industrial manufacturing to construction and chemicals. The intent of the research was to better understand how European businesses are expanding their EHS and ESG focus, specifically around:
- Where their efforts are focused
- Where success is seen
- What are their challenges
The complete report, Engaging Workers, Growing Business and Protecting the Planet: How Improving EHS and ESG Performance Can Drive Competitive Advantage, is now available for download.
Research highlights reveal the struggle to get employees onboard with EHS initiatives may be slowing progress. Organizations continue looking for ways to improve employee engagement in health and safety by more effectively uncovering incidents and near-misses faster and many organizations are prioritizing technology and training so as to improve health and safety processes.
The research shows there is increasing concern around how poor EHS and ESG practices negatively impact wider business performance. More than 78 percent of those surveyed for the report say they “could lose business to competitors who can better demonstrate how they’re improving health and safety” while 74 percent say, “if they don’t improve ESG performance, it will harm their organization’s brand and reputation.”
There’s a need by many to drive employee safety participation. Education and training are among their greatest health and safety challenges. The question many organizations seem to be pondering is how to get everyone – from senior management to on-location workers – to own the task of improving how business operates across EHS and ESG?
Chapter 2 of the report, The Business Impact of Getting it Right (or Wrong), examines how doing the right things for people and the environment can have far-reaching consequences and affect everything from how easy it is for an organization to attract and retain key talent to whether customers want to do business with you.
Insight is offered into the risks of poor ESG performance and the impact of health and safety on the ability for a company to attract and retain key workers. Also highlighted is what ESG and EHS professionals say they believe are the consequences of poor ESG performance and whether EHS can provide competitive differentiation.
The ESG focused section of the report, Engaging Workers Growing Business and Protecting the Planet, reveals more than half of organizations surveyed are prioritizing environmentally focused ESG activities ahead of other considerations. The result is hardly surprising given the intense attention placed on environmental concerns of extreme weather conditions happening around the globe and the highly publicized collective efforts of many nations to move away from environmental polluting activities.
Among other topics related to ESG that those surveyed responded to in this section were considerations around the challenges of data collection and quality, plus worker engagement and education. Greater insight is offered regarding the level of confidence and optimism of ESG and EHS professionals around current ESG efforts, their use of management software and other technology applications, plus the challenge of disconnected data and the need to integrate disparate ESG systems.
The final section of the report spotlights and summarizes regional responses and perspectives from the following countries:
- Germany, Austria and Switzerland (DACH region)
- The United Kingdom and Ireland
- The Nordic Region
Download the complete Intelex’s research report today. On the same page, you can register to take a 10-minute maturity survey that will show how your business compares to similar organizations when it comes to EHS and ESG, as well as providing information and tips on how to improve your competitive edge.
This research is just one of Intelex’s efforts to heed “voice of the customer” to determine where environmental, health, safety and quality (EHSQ) professionals are focused as they strive to eliminate workplace deaths, protect the planet and improve production efficiencies.