In August 2022, QBS Technology Group attained B Corp certification with a score of 93.6, marking a significant milestone in our commitment to sustainability. This achievement not only enhanced our visibility among partners, publishers, and customers but also provided a robust framework for ongoing improvement and learning, setting an example for other businesses to initiate their B Corp journey.
Advancing Transparency in Environmental Impact Assessment
Understanding the importance of transparent environmental practices, we have for the second year expanded our carbon footprint assessment to include our pension carbon footprint. This move, a first for us, aims to present a more accurate picture of our environmental impact. Our analysis showed that pension-related emissions now exceed our previous year’s total carbon footprint, accounting for over a third of our total emissions.
Through this comprehensive approach to carbon accounting, we aspire to inspire similar actions in other organisations.
Expanding Our Carbon Footprint Scope
In response to evolving post-COVID dynamics, QBS Technology Group has taken significant steps to broaden the scope of our carbon footprint assessment. This comprehensive approach encompasses various aspects of our operations:
- Increased Travel and Office Activity: The easing of COVID-19 travel restrictions has led to a rise in business travel, office activities, and commuting. However, emissions from homeworking have concurrently decreased by 48%.
- Enhanced Data Collection: Our scope for data collection regarding purchased goods and services now includes an extended range of professional services.
- Challenges in Data Acquisition: In the UK, we continue to face challenges in obtaining necessary environmental data from landlords of our leased offices. We are optimistic about future improvements in this area.
- Adherence to UN GHG Protocol: Despite not meeting our carbon reduction targets due to post-COVID operational changes, our efforts have exceeded the United Nations Greenhouse Gas Protocol requirements in carbon footprinting. It’s noteworthy that we exclude the consumer use phase of our retail software from our footprint, as this is accounted for by the developers.
Our forward-looking targets include transitioning our offices in Germany, Wembley, and Alderley Edge to 100% renewable energy sources. Additionally, we aim to encourage our staff to adopt renewable energy at home and plan to invest in high-performing, fossil fuel-free funds, targeting a 15% reduction in our pension-related carbon emissions.
ESG Achievements in 2023
Achieving Carbon Neutral Status with Gold Standard VER Offsets
QBS Technology Group has attained carbon neutral status by offsetting 110% of our emissions using Gold Standard Verified Emission Reduction (VER) offsets. While there are debates around the use of offsets, we believe in their effectiveness when responsibly chosen. Our offset strategy focuses on Health & Livelihood projects, ensuring immediate and verified emission reductions, rather than prospective outcomes like tree planting.
By partnering with Climate Impact Partners, a certified B Corp, for our offsetting efforts, we aim to go beyond achieving net-zero carbon status. Our goal is to be a climate-positive enterprise, leading the way in responsible and impactful environmental stewardship.
Go to our full report at the end of the page to read more about our projects: Gyapa efficient cookstoves (Ghana), Bondhu Chula clean cookstoves (Bangladesh), and Orb Rooftop Solar (India).
Worker Engagement and Well-being Initiatives
Up to July 2023, QBS Technology Group has made significant strides in enhancing our workplace environment and employee well-being:
- Renamed our HR department to ‘Human Capital’ to emphasise the value of our staff.
- Attained the Investors in People Gold award.
- Adopted a flexible hybrid working model (2 days in-office, 3 days remote).
- Enhanced medical benefits for all employees.
- Launched a travel booking app displaying the carbon footprint of business travel.
- Introduced an employee engagement portal and an improved feedback platform.
- Implemented Employee Net Promoter Scoring, achieving a score of 50.
- Re-established the QBS social committee for organising social events.
- Developed an industry-leading Employer Value Proposition (EVP) initiative.
- Roll out of the enhanced EVP initiative.
- Introducing new leadership in Human Capital.
- Launching the QBS Women’s Group and annual employee awards.
- Enhancing mental health support.
- Implementing a Learning Management System (LMS) for comprehensive professional development.
- Offering sustainable merchandise for significant life events.
Community Engagement and Support
Customer Engagement and Innovation
Enhancing Governance and Corporate Responsibility
Up to July 2023, QBS Technology Group has implemented key measures to strengthen our governance and corporate responsibility:
- Launched the QBS Technology Group Corporate Responsibility Charter.
- Conducted Quarterly Business Updates (QBUs) virtually, ensuring company-wide transparency in performance sharing.
- Amended our articles of association to prioritise both employee and societal interests equally, moving away from a shareholder-centric approach.
- Established a comprehensive Corporate Operating Model (COM).
- Achieved recertification in ISO 14001, ISO 9001, and ISO 27001, underscoring our commitment to quality, environmental management, and information security standards.
- Proactively disclosed our carbon emissions in the annual report and to the Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP).
- Enhanced cybersecurity measures, including increased frequency of penetration testing and comprehensive security awareness training for all staff through Usecure.
QBS Technology Group’s latest initiatives reflect our unwavering commitment to sustainability, employee well-being, community support, customer engagement, and robust governance.
Discover how we are forging a path towards a sustainable and inclusive future, and see the significant impact of our efforts across various sectors by downloading our full report ➡