Since BearingPoint’s founding in 2009, we have been determined to create value for our people, our clients’ people and people in society while respecting our planet. Early on, we committed to investing at least 1% of the firm’s annual revenue in promoting sustainability. These investments encompass +time donations, awareness training and campaigns, other donations (from in-kind over licenses to money) and connecting diverse stakeholders for impactful collaboration.
We understand that we have our biggest impact by doing things right with clients. That said, it is important for us to emphatically improve our internal doing to be both authentic and equipped to drive positive change for people and planet together with our clients.
Consequently, we decided to be “sustainable by design” on all levels. With our internal governance and actions, we shall deliver more than just nice-to-have results regarding sustainable practices. We aim to incorporate sustainability (social and ecological concerns next to profit considerations) into the flesh and bone of our firm. Consequently, sustainability has become a key component of our firm’s core beliefs, our purpose and our Strategy 2025.
Sustainability at BearingPoint
People-centricity is a core principle of how we think, decide and act in our firm. It also means being responsible for our people (as part of our social responsibility as a firm). We want BearingPoint to be a firm where colleagues can grow and create impact, both today and in the future. Many teams (from HR and compliance to sustainability) are working toward this with benefits, support schemes, collaboration tools, development opportunities, and central guidelines and policies.
People working in our organization shall see BearingPoint as a place where they feel respected and challenged, supported and cared for, and where they can develop. Together with our affinity groups, we want to improve continuously. Affinity initiatives and their allies create spaces to meet, exchange and improve – and by doing so, they advocate for the needs and perspectives of those that deserve more attention in society and our firm. Currently, we have four affinity initiatives: The Women-network engages for gender equality, the Proud-network raises LGBTQ+ awareness, the Ability-network discusses health and impairment in the work environment and MORE, advocates for the needs of Minorities or Religion and Ethnicity.
The umbrella of all these groups is DIVE (diversity, inclusion, variety, and equality). With our DIVE Council, an international team of passionate DIVE leads and sponsors, we promote collective actions and communication across the firm.
Giving people the room to thrive, feel supported and be instilled with purpose is vital to our sustainability agenda. That is why we seek to offer our people exciting project opportunities and frequent local, firmwide and external training to let them grow personally and professionally.
To complement our people-centric Strategy 2025, we see female acceleration and higher female representation across all levels and with all leadership teams as a priority. Not only does this positively impact innovation and culture, but it also ensures that all our people balance their work and private/family roles. Beyond, we strive to keep engagement and belonging levels high with everybody in our firm.
For our clients, we want to be known as the partner that accompanies them on their critical transformations in a personal and solution-oriented way. With the numerous sustainability challenges people and our planet face, we continuously enrich our services and product portfolio to be our clients’ sustainability partner of choice. Lately, the renowned consulting firm “I Care” became part of the BearingPoint family. Together, we can tackle our clients’ diverse ecological abatement needs across industries even better.
We not only address the what but also the how. Our sustainability agenda defines our ambition to deliver all our projects “sustainably by design.” We also want to have a conversation with our clients on how we can jointly work on our projects in a responsible, emission-reduced way. We encourage our teams to think outside the box. The idea is to use the power of our client networks to increase sustainable impact by pitching collaboration in pro bono projects, engaging clients in an industry study on sustainable practices and innovating new sustainable practices with them (beyond the original scope of a specific project).
We want our impact to be positive and lasting beyond our firm. BearingPoint sees itself as a corporate citizen helping deprived people in the communities around our people. Again, it is our people that make the difference! As a firm, we ensure that our people can engage with society in any way that their interest, preferences, and private/work situation allows.
With our program “We reach out to people,” we support mainly local good causes and organizations by making in-kind and monetary donations or giving our attention and time. In addition to these local setups, we have developed the firmwide program “Enable Helpers.” Here, we advocate for pro bono support of nonprofits and social start-ups since we see that sharing our skills in project management, IT implementation and data analytics is valuable to many non-commercial partners. We treat these pro bono projects as professionally as client projects.
We are looking to allow for at least one medium-term pro bono project per country per year.
We know that we have no time to waste when it comes to reducing emissions and the impacts of climate change. As clear as the task is, the required change is significant. Even as a service company with comparably small emissions, we have homework to do.
To make our ambitions clear, we came up with an emission reduction target that is compliant with SBTi. Our goal to cut emissions is absolute – despite our ambitious growth targets. Actually, we seek to reduce our carbon emissions by 50% until the end of 2025 (compared to 2019, which is our baseline year).
It is only when we bring all of these elements together, that we and our clients can succeed because “Together, we are more than business.”
When considering our approach to sustainability, we see the many important actions already taken – and the big challenges ahead. We are not perfect. Yet, we have incorporated the idea of continuous improvement and increasing transparency to make sustainable change happen as much as possible within our organizational setup. To benchmark ourselves with external standards, we decided to start the B Corp certification process. This process will challenge us, but it will also accelerate our firm’s transformation. If everything works out well, we will not only have learned a lot but will also be a certified B Corp soon.