Setting environmental goals

While the company was already fully carbon neutral through offsetting, its ultimate goal focuses on carbon reduction. SMR started the process of measuring carbon usage in 2022, partnering with us to build an accurate and detailed understanding of its impact on the environment and how to reduce its carbon footprint. Our scientific experience, hands-on approach and knowledge were behind SMR’s decision to work with us.

Simon Rispin, Director at SMR, says:

Flotilla was the obvious carbon accounting and net zero delivery partner choice as they are local to us and demonstrated that they have scientific experience and integrity, coupled with market leading technology to be able to simplify the complex, which helps us to make a difference and makes commercial sense too.  We also admire that Flotilla are passionate about our achievements and are in it for the long-term.

“As well as the huge benefits for the environment and team engagement, we also view this as a strong focus area for business development. We work with exceptional clients who have their own ESG agendas, and it is only right they look to work with like-minded consultants who have taken steps in the right direction to reduce their own carbon, as are we doing with our own suppliers.”

Taking the first steps

From the start of its journey it was essential that SMR assessed where it stood in terms of carbon usage. Working closely with directors and SMR’s sustainability team, we reviewed all practices to create a breakdown of emissions. The analysis left no stone unturned, examining everything including personal and business travel to energy usage, consumables, and supply chain. Using this data, we created a robust Carbon Report that focused on a baseline carbon footprint for SMR, providing actionable, evidence-driven insight at both high and granular levels.

Team SMR engagement

With a youthful and diverse team that enjoys an active social calendar during and outside of work, SMR made it a priority for the team to be fully on board with the company’s net zero commitments, and work together to deliver carbon reductions.

As well as reducing emissions, a crucial element of the net zero journey is about changing the team’s mindset to help them instinctively make choices that are beneficial to the environment. To support this, we carried out employee surveys to get a picture of the team’s views on sustainability. The response was overwhelmingly positive, and the feedback has helped inform SMR’s engagement and carbon reduction plans.

Of the 83% of employees who responded to the survey, 95% said they are willing to support the company to help reduce emissions and 95% acknowledge they have a personal responsibility to reduce impact at home and at work. In addition, many employees offered practical suggestions of sustainable actions they would like to see at work, which demonstrates their engagement with plans.

To further support team engagement, we introduced SMR to one of our partners, Make it Wild – a Yorkshire-based conservation organisation – which now works with the SMR team to raise awareness and educate them on the importance of sustainability. The company also organises team days to encourage staff to meet up, immerse themselves in the outdoors and contribute towards carbon mitigation through projects such as tree planting, peat restoration and rewilding.

What’s next?

Now a year into the journey, SMR plans to keep up the momentum, assess its findings and, with Flotilla’s support, set specific targets and formulate and implement strategies to reduce, eliminate, or mitigate carbon impact.

Truly holding itself accountable, SMR’s detailed net zero plan outlines agreed actions, suggested timescales for each project, and key performance indicators (KPIs) to support progress monitoring.

We have helped SMR to develop a plan, to include a strategy for sustainable travel, better energy and carbon data collection policies to understand usage. Work will involve working with landlords to ensure premises are as green as possible and agreeing a “going digital” strategy targeting waste reduction, creating a sustainable procurement policy, and engaging current suppliers to review carbon emissions and assist with carbon reductions.

With clear goals and a strong partnership, SMR is well on its way to achieving its mission of becoming net zero by 2030. The firm’s journey demonstrates the importance of involving the entire team to drive a purpose led culture from within, acting on regular data collection and feedback, and ensuring that it’s a continuous process to net zero and beyond.