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Radar 1/7 Corporate strategy


Transparency key to sustainability


Businesses must go beyond the limita- tions of regulation and ensure internal and external auditing is actively incor- porated into their day-to-day operations if they want to become market leaders. Many companies believe that meet-


ing minimum regulatory stand- ards is where the journey to becoming a socially responsi- ble corporation ends, but this trend has started to shift with companies of all sizes making efforts to exceed expectations. This active drive in corporate sus- tainable transparency has not solely been the result of a moral conscience, the motivation has also come from the com- mercial benefits it brings.


As a major player in the transportation sector, one of the highest contributing sectors of carbon emissions, UPS has had to make significant improvements


to its operations over the years. EMEA director of sustainability


at


UPS, Peter Harris (below), told SB: “Regulation is a minimum standard and our approach is that we do actively go beyond that in many cases. And the rea- son for that is fundamentally commer- cial – going beyond regulation is part of being sustainable”.


“Sustainability for us is the ability to sustain, which is to be successful for the long term. So this whole thing for us is a commercial thing and it’s about the future of the business,” added Harris.


UPS’s sustainability drive focuses on the company’s 100 year old heritage and looks at how it will secure the future of the business in uncertain eco- nomic times.


“It’s thinking about what it takes to


achieve this and in a sense that is a com- mercial message – it’s not about phi- lanthropy, it’s not about tree hugging. You end up doing things that some peo- ple might recognise as tree hugging but we’re not doing it for that reason, we’re doing it for the future of the business and sometimes the future of the business


requires us to think about going beyond compliant”.


The challenges of auditing a business are quite clear but UPS firmly supports the need for auditing to ensure transpar- ency throughout the company. “Auditing is challenging but at the end of the day there is no sustainability with- out transparency and there is no trans- parency without auditing because unless you audit you don’t really know what’s going on in the business,” says Harris. “You can set policies from the top and


you can issue as many procedure manu- als as you want but unless you are out looking at your operations you have no idea whether they are actually happen- ing,” he added.


Business models


Brands reinvented for brave new world


The business models of six brand leaders have been radically redesigned to cast a future scenario which offers long-term


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