SUEZ recycling and recovery UK

When it launched its sustainability initiative, national environmental solutions company Suez wanted to enhance its employee experience by harnessing and increasing employee enthusiasm for sustainability.

Its people share the firm’s commitment to the environment and to a triple bottom line, balancing people, the planet and profit in everything it does – indeed, it told judges that many people join the company because they share its environmental aspirations, and so building on this enthusiasm was a key aim. 

The initiative involved employee training, the creation of a network of ‘sustainability champions’, policy changes and, importantly for a company that employs a predominantly hands-on and practical workforce, the delivery of clear actions and projects on the ground. All of these actions have been captured through a bespoke and specially developed in-house People and Planet app, where employees record and share best practice. So far, reported activities have included community litter picks, site biodiversity activities such as the creation of bug hotels and pollinator planting, fundraising and energy efficiency projects.

Suez also introduced a sustainable travel policy, including a meeting impact calculator, so that meeting costs (both financial cost and carbon emissions) are understood. A ‘sustainable meeting decision aide’ helps staff decide which type of meeting to hold, with digital being the most sustainable and catching a flight the least. 

The panel was excited by Suez’s shift to leading on sustainability through people, and making employees proud to come to work. The judges said there was a “clear engaging strategy built on a strong purpose”, and that the entry successfully tied together Suez’s core values with the people strategy and employee experience, setting out to positively impact its staff, the environment and its customers.