By Aubree Halusic, 3R Sustainability Consultant
On a typical day, there are a lot of moving parts within my schedule. Consulting can be very fast paced—multiple client calls a day and a handful of internal calls in between, in addition to integrating project tasks and deliverables that provide enhanced, sustainable solutions to clients.
My Monday mornings are spent organizing my schedule—typically with a large cup of coffee and my cat, Camber, right by my side—so that I can best prioritize each daily task given that deadlines approach quickly. This helps keep the day structured, whether in a remote or in-office environment, and sets a foundation for the rest of my week.
Once my week is structured, I fill the non-meeting gaps in my schedule with client work, whether that be working on an EcoVadis submission, materiality assessment, sustainability plan and strategy, or supporting with writing sustainability report content. There are multiple services 3R offers, so it makes for an exciting day when I can allocate my time to multiple deliverables for various clients. The switch in focus can sometimes be challenging, but once you adapt to this process, it brings a lot of satisfaction when you fully complete the task that can be successfully delivered to the client.
Lately, my focus has been geared towards preparing EcoVadis submissions on behalf of our clients in addition to developing sustainability plans and strategies for other clients. No matter what the project is, I always look forward to client kick-off calls at the beginning each project, which truly “kick-off” our work together. These calls are one of my favorite parts of the process since it allows the project team to meet the client working group and begin building a strong relationship from the start.
Completing an EcoVadis Submission
When shifting my focus to something like an EcoVadis submission, it begins with organizing and collecting all of the necessary documentation and data from our client to fulfill the information requested by their specific EcoVadis questionnaire. Requested documentation can include a wide range of documents including policies, employee handbooks, standard operating procedures, training reports, health and safety certificates, and more. Depending on the industry, a variety of other documentation may be necessary to collect for the submission.
Once all documentation is collected, I complete a review process of each document to ensure that the information will comply with the requirements of EcoVadis, including the content, effective date, accurate company information, and other aspects of the assessment. For any documents that need more information or evidence to meet submission requirements, I directly communicate and work with the client to discuss improvement options.
Given that multiple parties from the client’s organization are needed to collect these documents, the document collection process typically spans over a few weeks. However, this process is a critical step in identifying any gaps within the EcoVadis submission, which then allows us to create an EcoVadis Gap Assessment and Improvement Plan, a deliverable included in the scope of our EcoVadis service line, for the client.
After creating the EcoVadis Improvement Plan, each reviewed document is then uploaded into the EcoVadis portal with the question it coincides with, providing EcoVadis with the correct evidence to be assessed. Once all relevant documentation has been uploaded and reviewed by myself, our team, and the client, I fully submit the questionnaire on the client’s behalf and patiently wait for the scoring results, which are eventually compiled into a scoring debrief and review with the client, bringing the project full circle.