What is Corporate Sustainability?

Corporate sustainability is essential to achieving long-term corporate success and ensuring that markets deliver value across society. To be sustainable, companies must operate responsibly, in alignment with universal principles and act to support the society around them.

To embed sustainability deep into the corporate culture, companies must commit themselves at the highest level, report regularly on their performance, and engage in local markets.

The relationship between the bottom-line and a company’s environmental, social, and governance practices is clear: the well-being of workers, communities and the planet is tied to the financial health of the business. The smart choice is to proactively manage a company’s operations and value chain – looking at risks and opportunities through a broader lens.

At the same time, we are facing global challenges ranging from climate change, water and food insecurity, to poverty, conflicts and wealth inequality – all of which require solutions that the business sector can help deliver. The private sector is responding, moving beyond its basic corporate responsibilities and going further into a strategic opportunity space. This includes:

  • business models, products, and services with a joint societal and economic return,
  • publicly advocating for government policies that advance sustainability priorities,
  • collaborating with peers to make systemic changes.

Corporate Sustainability and Alaya Consulting

At Alaya Consulting, we support the five defining features advocated by the United Nation Global Compact (UNGC):

1. Principled Business
For any company seeking to be sustainable, it begins with operating with integrity – respecting fundamental responsibilities in the areas of human rights, labour, environment, and anti-corruption.

2. Strengthened Society
Collaboration is essential. Companies and stakeholders are coming together to provide a collective voice and share risks in tackling major challenges that no single player can overcome.

3. Leadership Commitment
Effectuating change begins with the company’s leadership which must send a strong signal throughout the organization that corporate sustainability counts, and all responsibilities are important.

4. Reporting Progress
Corporate sustainability reporting expectations have evolved from a feel-good supplement to a strategic report showing measurable gains and losses.

5. Local Action
UN Global Compact (UNGC) has local networks in approximately 85 countries to help businesses navigate corporate sustainability on the ground.