With the new year come new responsibilities, goals and expectations; and of course, the world of corporate sustainability is no exception to this, and could benefit greatly from anticipating which ESG trends are coming their way this time around.
It should be clear by now that sustainability is not going anywhere, but rather will continue to get more and more demanding of companies’ ESG and sustainable strategies.
So what better way to set off a successful corporate new year than by putting our minds to the sustainable achievements of the organization. Here we have gathered a few of the main ESG trends we can expect and anticipate for the year 2024.
Unpacking ESG trends for 2024
ESG concerns have been at the forefront of corporate priorities for a while now, and as companies and organizations continue improving their sustainable journey, new goals and responsibilities keep coming in.
There is no doubt in our minds that ESG is here to stay, and that environmental, social and governance factors will increasingly be looked more closely as the year moves on, fulfilling societal, legal and institutional demands.
But what exactly can we expect from this new year 2024 in terms of ESG trends? Which will follow through form past years? And how many new approaches can we anticipate for the coming months?
The impact of ESG on financial aspects
For those who were not already aware of the close relationship between ESG or sustainability and corporate financial aspects, this year should be the last year of doubt. Indeed we can expect to see an even closer link between the finance world and that of ESG.
Environmental, social and governance aspects of a company will continue to become deeply embedded in the financial foundation of businesses, as many CFOs are already trying to understand and manage the financial impacts of climate change, both tangible and intangible.
This means that through 2024 we should begin to see further recognition of sustainability and financial stability becoming parallel corporate goals, rather than opposing.
The politicized and polarizing meaning beneath ESG
Unfortunately, the term ESG is still highly politicized and polarizing for many, which leaves such important social, environmental and governance efforts under too much political and social scrutiny.
These kind of attitudes are likely to continue through the new year, specially as regions such as the European Union continue pushing forward relevant but evermore demanding legislation and rules on the topic of corporate sustainability.
In this regard, it may become relevant for some companies to focus on actual individual and specific actions that fall under the term ESG but could be rebranded to avoid such polarizing or politicized viewpoints.
Engage employees in the sustainability strategy
The rise of Scope 3 reporting and ethical supply chains
It should come as no surprise that supply chains are at the centre of the ethics of corporate sustainability efforts, and which in turn raise questions and responsibilities regarding scope 3 emissions.
In view of the newly emerged European regulations on corporate sustainability reporting, as well as a due diligence directive, supply chain social and environmental ethics will likely have a main role in companies’ sustainable strategies and reporting responsibilities.
The bottomline of this trend is that companies are expected (and many times obliged) to follow ethical ways of doing business, including the sourcing of resources, adhering to fair labor standards, or reducing the environmental impact of their activities locally and overseas.
The end of greenwashing claims
The last few years’ progress in sustainability has unfortunately been overshadowed by greenwashing claims from companies across all industries. And the dangers of such false statements are too often undermined and underestimated.
But things might start taking a dramatic turn in the upcoming months, as efforts begin to flourish for putting a legal and definitive definition to what constitutes as greenwashing and what is indeed a valid sustainability claim.
How your employees can help achieve company ESG goals
In DoGood, we aim to simplify the complex web of sustainability objectives for companies by offering a platform that translates the high-level ESG (Environmental, Social, Governance) objectives into actionable tasks for every single employee.
Then, each employee not only knows how to make an impact but also feels empowered to contribute meaningfully to the greater sustainable strategy.
No more vague directives. No confusion. DoGood automates the process, making it seamless for the workforce to know precisely what steps to take.