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Introduction to Sustainability

In the past, social and environmental concerns were sometimes viewed as obstacles, or contradictory, to the overall goal of making a profit. Executives were measured based on financial performance alone, so many executives were not as concerned with air and water pollution, child labor in third-world countries, climate change, worker’s rights, political turmoil, and so on. With the concept of sustainability becoming more of a societal value, this has now changed. In other words, organisations are taking the necessary steps to sustain operations long-term by using actions such as the reduction of waste, the use of fewer resources, producing reusable outputs, and reduction in energy consumption.Enter your text here...

Consumers are demanding more and more that the suppliers of their goods and services concentrate on sustainability in their supply chain and logistics operations. Until it becomes part of the corporate strategy and culture, however, most companies start down the “green” path to comply with current regulations, or because of customer mandates and external pressures.

What Is the Incentive to Become Sustainable?

Every company, whether it be manufacturing, distribution, or service, has some sort of supply chain that has a social or environmental impact. Several reasons exist for organizations to develop and sustain sustainable strategies and behaviors.
One way to determine an organization’s specific drivers is the use of a PESTLE analysis. Often used in conjunction with a SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats) analysis, it aids organizations in determining the environment in which they operate. Factors evaluated during PESTLE as well as corresponding sustainability drivers are shown below.

PESTLE Drivers

Political

governmental and local policies, regulations and incentives, internal and external stakeholder attitudes

Economic

supply and demand principles, cost, currency exchange rates, availability of supply and resources, performance improvement

Social/ethical

availability of skilled personnel, working conditions and labor practices, bribery and corruption, corporate social responsibility, fair trade, societal values, reputation and brand value

Technological

electronic communication and transactions, innovation, new product and process development

Legislative

environmental laws, social/ethical/workforce legislation, finance and tax laws

Environmental

energy availability and conservation, waste reduction and management, global climate change

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