Is your Business Plastic ?

Sustainability aside, having a long term viewpoint on where the global market is heading is good business.  If you are part of a supply chain,  keeping an eye on where you are sourcing raw materials and confirming compliance with conflict minerals and anti-slavery legislation is increasingly becoming part of any RFQ and tender processes.   Creating an agile business provides the strength to anticipate and respond swiftly to market fluctuations – so have you anticipated the ground swell movement against plastic, and in particular single use plastic?

This week, sees the major supermarkets signing up to the UK Plastics Pact which has been launched by WRAP which brings together businesses, NGOs and UK Government to tackle plastic packaging waste by redesigning  out waste and establishing reuse with targets set for incorporation of recycled plastics into products.  The pact which is the first of its kind in the world Continue reading “Is your Business Plastic ?”

Risk Management? – Not just for Health and Safety

Hear the words ‘Determining Risk’ and most small businesses  may instantly conjure up  health and safety risk assessments that have become part and parcel of day to day business  activities.

Increasingly, Corporate Responsibility relies on embracing a wider vision to ensure that the ethos of your business in congruent with the values and perceptions of your customers. For example, raw  materials and their sources  not being impacted by  conflict minerals, or that your supply chain does not contain any goods or services created through child or slave labour.   There is also a Mandatory annual statement required by businesses with £36m + turn over to demonstrate the actions taken to prevent slavery and human trafficking in their operations or supply chain under the UK Modern Slavery Act 2015.

For anyone with an ISO certification, the transition onto the 2015 standard, particularly for ISO 9001, ISO 14001 and 45001 requirements, risk management has become part of everyday vocabulary.   The new standards centre around the actions to address risk and opportunities, taking the focus for the context of the organisation wider than in previous versions.  Stakeholders both internal and external now have to be identified, along with any considerations that may be required to understand their needs and expectations.  Sub contractors and outsourced process activities have  now become  part of the system, with the risk of any perceived or actual affect on the products and services that the organisation produces needing to be identified and actioned.

For growing businesses, risk management is an everyday occurrence.  The potential market place, competition, customer satisfaction pressures, and being agile enough to embrace and ‘nutribullet the shit out of’  embryonic  technologies and talent requires a telescopic viewpoint of emerging risks and markets.  Taking that viewpoint one step closer, how many organisations  routinely consider the risks closer to home that would affect the delivery of their day to day business?  The risk of being left in the lurch by your skilled ‘Go To’ guru having a lottery win when he is the only one who knows a certain process,  or how you handle the change to a major supplier or logistic company to prevent chaos reigning?  Even your payment terms can create risks.   Will your small suppliers or specialist contractors still treat your break down as an emergency if you have put them on longer tighter payment terms that don’t serve them?   How many organisations have considered and planned contingencies for the affects of short term weather patterns, or the affect to their supply chain or overseas operations from climate change?

If any of these factors have made uncomfortable reading, then attending a Lean2Sustain workshop  can help you consider practically how you can plan for and affect a more sustainable business. Not only will we enable you  to  recognise where the risks lie to your business, but how to design out actual and transactional wastes to make you leaner and improve your sustainability – in both the Corporate Responsibility and viable meaning of sustainable business.