Sustainability reporting: from "nice to have" to "must have"

Announce sustainability efforts? Of course! But what and how exactly?

Many large companies and SMEs are strongly motivated to present their efforts. This presents them with a complex and often new challenge. An offer from WIRZ helps interested companies to communicate their sustainability reporting in a creative and well-founded way.

19. December 2023

The foundations for transparent and credible reporting should be laid at the outset:  This includes the development of a sustainability strategy and a materiality analysis involving all stakeholders. The reporting standards to which non-financial reporting should be aligned can be defined on the basis of the constantly growing new regulatory requirements. This enables a well-founded ESG report that does not run the risk of being accused of greenwashing. "A good sustainability report must be much more than a colorful advertising brochure. It is based on an ESG management system that is practised internally, continuously developed and coordinated with all stakeholder groups," explains Marleen Diener, Head of the Competence Center for Sustainability at WIRZ.

A one-stop shop from WIRZ

The WIRZ Competence Center for Sustainability, together with the PR experts and the branding team, is behind the new offer for SMEs and other companies. Marleen Diener clarifies: "Sustainable corporate orientation and communication based on this is a process. Our consultation starts with a workshop on the current situation and needs. We can then develop an individual roadmap together with the customer." The service provides companies with holistic support - from setting up internal company processes to creative translation into an attractively conceived and designed sustainability report.

The requirements are increasing

In 2022, Switzerland has already included provisions for sustainable corporate governance to protect people and the environment in the Swiss Code of Obligations (CO) - based on EU requirements. Swiss companies with more than 500 employees, a balance sheet total of CHF 20 million or an annual turnover of CHF 40 million will have to publish a non-financial report for the 2023 financial year for the first time next year. Mandatory reporting points include environmental, social, employee and human rights issues as well as measures to combat corruption. "Many medium-sized and small companies do not yet have corresponding management systems and are therefore entering uncharted territory," says Marleen Diener. "But with the right approach, sustainability efforts can be made transparent and communicated in an interesting and creative way."

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