It has long been believed that companies could be sustainable, or profitable, but not both. Thankfully today, more and more companies are realizing that it is indeed possible to turn a profit while being sustainable. In fact, in some cases increased efforts in sustainability can actually decrease cost and increase revenue, making a company more profitable as they become more sustainable. A World Economic Forum report named companies such as Nestle and UPS among 25 multinational companies that were able to cut costs by over 15% and increase revenue by 20%, simply by focusing on improving sustainability within their company. There are 3 main ways which sustainability can increase profit within companies, which are explained below.
More than ever before, consumers are making smart and conscious choices about the companies they choose to support. Customers seek out companies who are committed to things that are important to them, such an environmental protection. When companies commit to greater sustainability efforts, this resonates with consumers who are passionate about the environment, leading to increased customer loyalty and a competitive advantage over less sustainable companies. This increases sales, and therefore increases revenue.
Reduction in Resources
Resources like fuel and paper are expensive for your company to use, and their use increases a company's carbon footprint. Efforts to reduce your carbon footprint go hand in hand with a reduction in money spent on fuel, paper, and other supplies. For example, DHL saved over 10% on fuel by switching to a more aerodynamic trailer. The World Economic Forum report showed that companies who reduced fuel usage by up to 22% saw an increased revenue of up to 20%! It pays to reduce your carbon footprint.
Our industrial world contributes a lot of pollution into our atmosphere, which in turn causes a variety of environmental problems such as floods, tornadoes, unpredictable weather patterns, and more. These environmental issues and natural disasters can cause interruptions in supply chains and workflow within our industries, in addition to the suffering caused to people living in those affected areas. When every company does their part to reduce this pollution, you are also helping to reduce the frequency and severity of these climate-change-induced weather phenomena. Every little bit helps, and any improvement in sustainability is a step in the right direction for improving our world.