Defining the maturity and integration of sustainability management in practice means addressing the following questions:
- How is your company managing sustainability issues that matter to the business? How mature is it in defining policies, managing performance and disclosing relevant matters?
- Is sustainability integrated within your business model and strategy? How are different functions and affiliates embedding material issues in their management processes?
So why is it increasingly important for companies to address these questions? The following four facts provide an overview of the relevance of having more mature and integrated sustainability management systems.
- Defining materiality is not enough.
While several reporting frameworks support companies in defining the materiality of sustainability topics (among the most referenced GRI, SASB, the IIRC), concluding a materiality assessment and publishing results though sustainability and/or integrated reports does not create value. In practice, materiality is about defining what matters to a specific company and its stakeholders and how identified topics have potential impact on the business value creation. As a clear consequence managing what matters is as important as, if not more, than defining it.