This was originally posted on LinkedIn.Sustainability initiatives are becoming a focal point for companies that produce packaging or products. And for good reason. In addition to consumers demanding more sustainable options, governments are getting involved as well to force the issue. Whether that’s by the implementation of standards or regulations, like the Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) for example, or from corporate initiatives focused on social responsibility – every company is being challenged to innovate when it comes to raw materials used across their supply chain and in their products and packaging.But oftentimes, companies aren’t sure where to start when it comes to taking action. And that’s because the necessary data to report on raw materials often lives in disparate systems or is scattered across their supply chain partners. And while executives are often aligned on their vision for sustainability and setting big goals, the actual people doing the work – in product development, packaging, and supply chain operations – are typically left with more questions than answers.
“How can we benchmark or achieve goals if we can’t easily manage the data those metrics are based on?” Or “how can we easily innovate or pivot when trying to meet or exceed goals?” are common questions I hear when talking to operators on the front lines of sustainability commitments.
The reality is, you can’t think of these initiatives as individual projects – they’re long-term initiatives that are ongoing. So the next question is typically “how can I manage sustainability initiatives from a resource standpoint and from a business perspective?”
I recently spoke with packaging influencer Cory Connors on his Sustainable Packaging podcast about why so many companies are struggling and how I believe Specification Management is the key to a sustainable future. Take a listen and let’s keep the discussion around a sustainable future going… What are some of the sustainability “horror stories” you’ve seen in your experience? Share your comments on my LinkedIn post.