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Published: 2011-04-21 00:00:00

The Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) framework provides tools for management that have the potential to increase a business’s profits by improving its image and credibility, as well as helping to develop a better connection with stakeholders.

Registrations are now being sought for the two morning workshops being held next month – the first on Wednesday 4 May and the second on Wednesday 18 May. Sustainabiz is subsidising the half-day programme, reducing the cost from $600 to $390.

The workshops will be delivered by Calum Revfem, a certified GRI trainer and director at New Zealand consultancy, Envirostate.

Sustainabiz coordinator Barnaby Smith said some small to medium businesses may be finding their customers now require a higher level of environmental or sustainable accountability.

“Some small to medium sized businesses slot into the supply chains of larger companies which may be seeking to ‘green’ their supply chain,” Mr Smith said.

“A sustainability report can demonstrate that your business meets the international standard.

“Demonstrating that you meet this standard increases the potential for credible market leadership. In some cases it may also be required for market entry, such as in the case of New Zealand wine producers and UK supermarket chain demands for carbon certification.”

Mr Smith said next month’s workshops could potentially help businesses not only retain customers, but also attract further clients. Monitoring and reporting eco-efficiencies – such as energy use, waste, water and transportation – could also help to reduce a business’s costs.

For report users, the GRI reporting framework is a useful benchmarking and corporate governance tool, and an avenue for long term dialogue with reporting organisations.

More information on the workshops is available at www.sustainabiz.co.nz/news. Alternatively, contact Envirostate on (07) 575 9266 to register.

Sustainabiz is a not-for-profit sustainable business support programme funded by the Waikato Regional Council and local councils. For more information, visit www.sustainabiz.co.nz.