Sustainable business case study in-class test


SECTION A – Materiality and Stakeholder Engagement

Question 1

  1. Why is it necessary to provide reporting guidance for Sustainability Reporting to organisations?                                                                                        

Providing guidance for Sustainability Reporting is essential its uphold transparency. The reporting ensures a firm considers the social, economic, and environmental issues affecting its activities, and through this, there is transparency about probable risks and opportunities. From the news, people have witnessed multinational firms pollute the environment or adversely impact society and fail to be accountable. As a result of this, making a mere claim about an organisation’s sustainability level is not enough. Organisations have to provide credible and substantial exhibitions of their level of sustainability, and this is by adhering to the guidelines for sustainability reporting. The reporting guidance instructs firms on what they should provide so that the public can trust them.                                                                                                                        10 marks (100 words)

  • Stakeholder Engagement is critical in developing a Sustainable Strategy. Evaluate whether Burberry’s stakeholder engagement has been comprehensive.    Ensure your answer refers to academic theories on Stakeholder management and Stakeholder attributes.

Stakeholders are critical elements for the wellbeing of an organisation. The main reason behind this is because these are the individuals the organisation depends on for labour, capital, funding and profits. Therefore, the involvement of stakeholders in developing a sustainable strategy is paramount. Burberry’s stakeholder engagement is comprehensive because the firm has identified all its stakeholders. The first step before creating a sustainability strategy is acknowledging the stakeholders as a valuable asset. Burberry recognises workers, shareholders, communities, government, partners, and customers. By identifying these individuals, they provide critical insights that help Burberry come up with informed decisions.

Another factor that shows Burberry’s stakeholder engagement is how the organisation aligns its sustainability objectives with those of the stakeholders. Burberry conducts a materiality assessment, which has helped the firm understand why sustainability is critical to specific stakeholder groups. For instance, Burberry employees’ material issues include operational efficiency (flexible working), wellbeing, and career development. Stakeholder Theory emphasises the value of the relationships between an organisation and its stakeholders. The theory demands that a firm create value for all stakeholders. Burberry ensures that its customers reap value from the product/service offered to them. The organisation provides clients with quality services by listening and engaging with them. Seeking feedback from customers is a sure way of ensuring a firm is meeting its needs.

When it comes to the employees, Burberry understands that this human force brings a diverse range of talents and perspectives, which is the foundation for success. Burberry attends to its workers’ demands in terms of working conditions. When workers work in a conducive working environment, they feel appreciated and in safe hands, which propel them to give their best. Burberry also invests in its relationship with the community. The firm seeks to build a long-term partnership with the surrounding society hoping it will drive positive change and help build a sustainable future. Burberry strives t empower the community by participating in communal activities that empower youths. An example of such an action can be seen from the partnership the organisation has with schools in Greater London, Yorkshire and New York. Burberry also has a good work relationship with ministries and regulators within its operation realm. When an organisation is aware of all its stakeholders and ensures their relationship is healthy, its stakeholder’s engagement is comprehensive.

40 marks (400 words)

SUBTOTAL 50 marks

Section B Environmental Performance Data


  1.  The Greenhouse Gas Protocol has four steps.  Explain the purpose of the fourth step, “Quality Control” giving reasons for its importance.

The greenhouse quality control aims to maximize crop production by giving plants optimal conditions favourable for growth. The protocol primarily aims to enhance photosynthesis by keeping light, water and carbon dioxide checked for enhanced growth. The management process ensures plants optimally use photosynthesis agents for efficiency in development, fertility and production. Light is controlled under the protocol depending on the type of crops; if they require more intensity, artificial methods are used. The protocol also keeps humidity low, ensuring water is not lost through transpiration and maximizes carbon dioxide. The protocol provides maximum production and reduces the release of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere.

10 marks (100 Words)

  • Evaluate the performance shown in the emissions reduction report provided. Ensure you show recognition of the type of metrics used (both absolute and relative) and base line years.

From the emission reduction report, the percentage of energy from renewable sources has been significantly increased over the last three years. Between the years 2017/18 to 2020/19, the per cent of the greenhouse gases coming from renewable sources rose from 48% to 83% globally. This increase is quite alarming. Total energy coming from the fuel used in vehicles has been reducing over the span of three years. In years 2017/18, power from cars was 82,309,197 kWh (globally). In the following year, it dropped to 76,657,440 kWh. By the year 2020/19, the total energy had dropped to 69,022,600 kWh.  Vehicles are known to contribute to the greenhouse gases in the atmosphere significantly; therefore, the reduction of the energy used by these vehicles implies less gas was emitted over the years. 

Total emissions (scope 1 & 2) in years 2017/18 was 19,673,957 kgCO2e (globally) and 1,714,807 kgCO2e (in UK and UK offshore). But by the year 2020/19 the total emissions had dropped to 5,206,437 kgCO2e (globally) and 807,805 kgCO2e (in UK and UK offshore). From the report provided, over the years, the usage of energy has been reducing. This shows that the organisation is practising effective energy conservation measures. In some forms of power, the reduction is relatively small. An example of such is the electricity purchased and used for operations. More efforts should be taken to ensure that the firm continues to cut on its greenhouse gases emission. As companies jump on to using renewable energy sources, the amount of greenhouse gases will continue to reduce. Renewable fuels are advisable not only because they have low greenhouse gases emission, but they are also cheaper. In most case, these renewable sources come from by-products. Organisations should channel more funds into inventions that promote the use of eco-friendly fuels.

30 marks (300 words)

  • Offer ONE recommendation on the company could implement for improvements in emissions reduction.  Ensure your recommendation is SMART (specific, measurable, actionable, realistic and time bound)

(10 marks) (100 words)

The business could adopt a technology that converts carbon emission into less harmful forms to the environment. Catalytic converters work by neutralising greenhouse gases and disposing of them as eco-friendly waste. An example of technology the company could adopt includes using electrostatic precipitators. The electrostatic mechanism is a cheap and efficient method to implement. It charges the air pollutants and attracts them to the surface as particles for damping rather than realising the air’s gases. Catalytic converters will enable the business to proceed with its usual activities for maximum production and generation of profits and simultaneously look at the environment’s welfare.

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