June 8, 2021

The benefits of sustainability dashboards – busting green myths with data

Sustainability is the driving force behind improving the health of the environment and our oceans.

8 minute read

There’s been a seismic growth in the role data can play for brands and organisations that put sustainability at the heart of everything they do.

You may already be using data dashboards for your business, but what about tracking your whole sustainability journey?

We’ll show you how later.

First, let’s showcase some of the key facts and statistics being highlighted by two global events that speak about a much-needed topic – sustainability – World Oceans Day and World Environment Day:

  • Oceans make up 70% of the planet’s surface
  • Containing roughly 97% of the water on Earth
  • Greenhouse Gas levels are higher than they have been in 800,000 years
  • The world’s seas have absorbed more than 90 percent of the heat from these gases
  • By 2050, sea levels are predicted to rise between 1 and 2.3 feet
  • Average sea levels have risen over 8 inches (about 23 cm) since 1880.

(National Geographic: CLIMATE 101: Oceans / Sea Level Rise Explained / Global Warming Overview.)

What myths have you heard about sustainability? 

That it would hurt your profits as a business? That it is a luxury only afforded by the few? 

The good news is we are going to bust these myths about business sustainability, with stories from companies who have integrated sustainability into their strategies, helping not only the planet but also improving their business.

Myth 1 – being sustainable only adds costs to your business…

Truth 1 – going green creates additional value for your business.

The number one myth about sustainability is that it is not profitable.

According to the Guardian, S&P 500 companies who have sustainability integrated into their strategies see an 18% higher ROI, because of the way they are managing and planning for climate change. 

‘We’ve been studying the sustainability initiatives of 30 large corporations for some time. Our research shows that sustainability is a mother lode of organizational and technological innovations that yield both bottom-line and top-line returns’

Harvard Business Review

Sustainability means growing your business while positively impacting the environment. Businesses that monitor their resource usage, for example – water, soil, and natural resources – as well as tracking the return on these resources, will have the benefit of potentially dramatically lowering costs. 

Measuring their usage of resources and reducing wastage is not only good for the environment, it makes good business sense.  

Sustainability trends have shown a clear shift in consumer behaviour, with sustainability becoming a major factor in customer’s purchase decisions. Nielsen reported:

‘A whopping 81% of global respondents feel strongly that companies should help improve the environment’

With consumer sentiment shifting to a more environmentally-conscious position, it will not be long before regulations in countries change with the times. Therefore, businesses that are prepared will reap the rewards and have numerous advantages over their competitors. 

Myth 2 – sustainability is a luxury for the few…

Truth 2 – sustainability is a focus for the many.

Sustainability is not only a luxury reserved for the few, in developing countries but there have also been some notable examples of businesses utilising sustainable business practices to significantly reduce their costs. A 2011 McKinsey survey found that 33% of businesses were using sustainable practices to improve operational efficiency and reduce costs. 

In the Philippines, the Manila Water Company simply focused on water lost from various leaks in its pipes, from 1997 to 2010 the supply of water they recovered is equal to a medium-sized dam, which would have cost $750 million to build (HBR: Making Sustainability Profitable). 

The benefits of sustainability dashboards

The number of benefits sustainability dashboards can have to business are endless, with every Ikano Insight data dashboard being a bespoke solution tailored to your brand. You choose what to measure, giving you complete flexibility for your business and your sustainability goals, whether you’re trying to:

  • Focus on your priorities.
  • Communicate with your stakeholders.
  • Celebrate your successes.

Whatever your sustainability journey holds, there are a number of dashboard features that will help along the way:

  • Make your data accessible and easy to understand across your whole organisation
  • Track changes month by month, week by week, or even day by day
  • Capture and tell your sustainability story
  • Strengthen your brand communications
  • Create stronger relationships with your customers
  • All based on real data, real insight, real impact.

At Ikano Insight we understand the complex problems businesses are facing, sustainability included. Our team are experts at simplifying your data, helping you understand incredibly complex challenges, and empowering you with the knowledge you need to make the right decisions and take the right actions. 

But to be truly sustainable, you must be sure that your actions make good business sense and are embedded in the plans and processes of your organisation. 

Those actions with the biggest impact need to be measured – only then can your ambitions be fully achieved. If you think about your business, there is a constant need to understand the metrics to make informed decisions. It is the same with sustainability goals; what gets measured gets done.

Dashboards designed for your business

You may already be using Business Intelligence Dashboards for your organisation, but what about tracking your whole sustainability journey?

“We’re incredibly excited to share our new Sustainability Dashboards, that will track your sustainability goals, goals that are tailorable to your individual business, to help you make right decisions and to grow your business in a more sustainable way. Everyone at Ikano Insight is passionate about supporting our clients to become more sustainable and help to create a better future.” 

Karen Pflug, CEO

Our dashboards are designed so that you can measure exactly what’s right for your business and your sustainability journey. They give you complete flexibility – plug in the measures you want to track and adjust over time as you test and learn. 

Get in touch with the team to discuss your business sustainability needs and challenges and find a bespoke dashboard that’s right for you.

How does Ikano use the business sustainability dashboard?

There’s probably no better way to show you the capabilities of our dashboard than by giving you our own real-world case study. We’re part of the Ikano Group who use our data platforms to track 3 core areas of business: 

Circular & Climate Positive Consumption: we track our data to monitor our energy and water consumption, while also highlighting the positive we are having through our sustainability initiatives, such as recycling waste. 

Healthy & Sustainable living: we measure co-workers’ health and well-being goals, healthy food available for our co-workers, and much more. In fact, the benefit of this dashboard is how it can be personalised to your business, you decide what matters and what to track. 

Fair & Inclusive Diversity: measuring gender diversity across our business, from senior managers to junior co-workers has enabled us to track the progress of this important diversity measurement over time. 

Set, measure and visualise your sustainability progress with our complete suite of sustainability data visualisation tools.

Contact us for more information and to get a tour, we’d love to show you around the dashboards.

Posted by Sarah Cumber

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