The Streamlined Energy and Carbon Reporting (SECR) framework has brought environmental reporting and its benefits to the fore for many more organisations.
Businesses carrying out environmental reporting for the first time may not see the potential benefits, but rather view the new legislation as a burden and a box-ticking exercise to avoid non-compliance.
From a corporate point of view this may be an understandable perception. With pressures from investors to maximise profits and from customers to deliver high-quality products and services, allocating additional resource for environmental reporting could justifiably be a concern.
This blog highlights the benefits of environmental reporting and sets out why you should embrace SECR to deliver beyond your mandatory obligations.
Elevate your business as a sustainable supplier
As consumers are increasingly aware of the effects their choices and habits have on the environment, a brand’s reputation for sustainability is becoming of increasing importance.
As ethical consumption is a common topic, price and quality aren’t the only factors consumers are considering when making their purchasing choices. Therefore, an organisation’s approach to the environment is highly valued.
The same can be said for the supply chain. Often, businesses are looking further down the supply chain and are considering how a supplier’s energy usage impacts on their own emissions.
Does your business buy from manufacturers who keep their carbon emissions low? Are the logistics that support your operations operating sustainably? Factors like these will impact on your emissions.
SECR can help you demonstrate a transparent and positive analysis of your organisation’s energy and carbon impacts; allowing consumers and business partners to see you as a sustainable supplier with a positive and proactive approach towards helping the environment.
Improving staff retention and recruitment
As with your customers, people are also enthusiastic to be linked with an organisation who publicly values energy efficiency and sustainability. By getting fully behind SECR and optimising environmental reporting, an organisation becomes a more attractive place for current and future employees.
Strengthening your organisation’s reputation
By being included in your Companies House financial report, your SECR summary is in the public domain. You can use the SECR process to your advantage by producing a report that includes proactive efficiency projects providing your business with a real opportunity to promote sustainability. This has a positive impact on your Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and your reputation.
Helping you publicly contribute to the UK’s net-zero 2050 target
The UK’s ambitious goal of achieving net-zero by 2050 can only be realised if energy management is elevated to strategic and board level. SECR can help to shine a light on the good energy management and carbon reduction practices that are adopted by environmentally conscious organisations.
As part of your annual financial report, SECR is well placed to put your organisation’s environmental challenges and ambitions in front of your board team. Include your sustainability projections, demonstrate quantifiable cost and resource savings, and use it to your advantage as part of your business case for top level buy-in.
Energy cost savings
Embracing energy efficiency for SECR compliance doesn’t only improve your company’s reputation. Projects that improve energy efficiency through behaviour change and technical adaptations is a sure-fire way to reduce energy usage. With energy market volatility and price rises this is great way to keep the cost of energy down for your organisation. Money saved can be ploughed back into the business, to bolster stretched budgets elsewhere or invested in future energy schemes.
SECR doesn’t have to be complicated
There are some simple steps to take to help you prepare for your SECR reporting. A good place to start is by focusing on your data quality. Build a solid foundation of environmental reporting, starting with maximising your data and embedding a regular process for data aggregation. Setting regular intervals for data collection (e.g. monthly or quarterly) will also help eliminate the stress of last-minute data gathering.
There are some further helpful tips to follow in our SECR: getting prepared blog.
If you’re interested in outsourcing your SECR, we can help take you through the steps of environmental reporting and support you in achieving compliance. Our fully comprehensive service covers data collection and analysis, data auditing, processing and calculations, documenting a methodology and producing a SECR report.
If you’re interested learning more about our SECR service, call us on 01908 690018 or submit a contact form here.