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There’s no worse goal than no goal!

Successful Sustainability Measurement

The years when a responsible travel program was the exception rather than the rule are over. No more can it be regarded as a “nice-to-have”. Instead, it is key to:

  • remaining competitive as a supplier or business partner of choice,
  • winning and retaining talent to fuel continued success,
  • being compliant with requirements like the Paris Climate Agreement.

But, having implemented carbon reduction initiatives, how do you know that these are effective, that you have progressed far enough and, that you are in line with your company’s overall goals? How can you convince and influence your travelers that they have a role to play? It comes down to one key action: Measurement of success.

  • Dare: Set and commit to targets for tangible CO2 reduction.
  • If you don’t know how to set a measurable target, start simple: Have a look at your reporting and define a percentage from your baseline. It’s a start and can be adjusted. Don’t be afraid of setting a ‘wrong’ goal: “The goal can be updated, but having no goal makes it impossible to measure success”, says Richard Johnson, Senior Director of CWT’s Solutions Group and expert in sustainable business travel. Also, when establishing targets consider wider company objectives and any mandatory external factors like the Paris Agreement.

    In addition, you could get external assistance, e.g. from partnering with Science Based Targets as CWT did.

  • It’s in the mix: Choose the right parameters.
  • Overall, a broad set of metrics is preferable to having just one or two. However, as a start, you might want to focus on the quick wins. Monitoring the overall carbon footprint at a company level is a must-have. But for a tailored approach it makes sense to break it down further by business unit or even at an employee level. Don’t forget the important role employees play as ambassadors. Employees are your key to success. For them to contribute and act as role models they need to be motivated and, more than ever, a company’s employees are socially-conscious and care deeply about theirs and their organization’s contribution to a sustainable environment. Therefore, employee satisfaction should also be tracked.

    Another key indicator is the carbon intensity which measures the CO2 costs per trip or employee. To get the full picture we recommend you benchmark your emissions and KPI's against those of your industry peers, to know if your program performs above or below your industry average.

    Most goals are set for a year. This is good for short-term tactical activities and for checking if you are on track with budgets and other company goals of the same timeline. But be aware that some progress measures will be long-term, so it’s best to set both long- and short-term goals; which helps build and maintain momentum.

  • Reporting: Make the most of your data.
  • It’s the key source for setting realistic, reasonable and achievable objectives and measuring success. Your data will tell a story; the progress people make together as a team, or how close they are to achieving a target. Data strengthens the power of your communication with employees. It underpins your messages with facts and influences the behavior of your traveling employees. 


    CWT’s business intelligence platform 

    Depending on your travel mix, CWT’s reporting tool will be sufficient to provide accurate and meaningful data for your green travel program. If you have a more complex program, or travel mix which requires more in-depth reporting and a holistic approach, CWT Solutions Group provides enhanced carbon reporting on all major travel categories (including hotel and car) as well as traveler well-being.

    Partnering with Atmosfair, CWT Solutions Group’s comprehensive ECO (short for Employee Wellbeing, Climate Impact and Organizational Performance) Reporting can also calculate on various science-based methodologies and parameters which provide more granular and wide-ranging detail than our regular reporting. CWT Solutions Group can help you to:

    The ECO Reporting is part of our 5 steps to a holistic and successful sustainable travel program.

    In case you missed our podcast, you can still listen to it and get additional valuable insights of experts from Facebook, Atmosfair and United Airlines.

    • Monitor your carbon footprint and track reduction progress. Deep dive by business unit or region and help drive meaningful conversations with internal stakeholders. 
    • Benchmark how you are tracking against industry peers who started their sustainability journey at the same time as you. 
    • Enable you to make adjustments along the journey to meet your end goals using proprietary predictive analytics to forecast CO2 emissions vs reduction goals, and estimate annual achievements.



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CWT Solutions Group