B Corp (B Corporation) certification is awarded to companies that meet strict standards of social and environmental performance, transparency and accountability. In recent years, more than 8,000 companies have joined the B Corp movement. Why are we seeing a steady increase in the number of companies opting to join the movement? Is it a way for companies to attract new partners, to stand out from the competition or to recruit top talent? These are all key factors of strategic importance, but the real answer to this question is as simple as it is critical: “Because the future depends on it.” 

These companies are not the only ones to think so. Many major clients are now choosing to include environmental and social performance in their assessment of suppliers. While arduous and challenging, for all concerned (i.e. both clients and suppliers), this exercise has the potential to significantly transform the way business is done.

By taking it upon themselves to review the environmental and social impact of their entire supply chains, large companies at home and abroad are paving the way for a more inclusive and sustainable economy in the service of the common good.

Ready to join the B Corp movement

The biggest benefit of B Corp certification is that it forces us to rethink our business model, with a view to transforming it into a true impact business model. How do we generate income? What influence do we have on the impact of our clients’ project activities? Do the answers to these questions have a positive impact on partners, employees, the community, and the planet?

  • If not, then we need to go back to the drawing board and build a new value proposition.
  • If so, let us make the most of this model and ensure it accounts for as much of our income as possible.

B Corp-certified companies understand the impact their activities have on the environment and stakeholders. This vision gives rise to a proactive approach to transforming and improving their business model to achieve the desired impact. As a result, they are better positioned to respond to new clients and market demands.

Norda Stelo, an impact company

Like its B Corp peers, Norda Stelo wishes to give meaning to its activities for its employees and for the ecosystem in which it operates. How can an engineering firm that carries out projects for its clients have a real impact on the issues of our time? By pushing the envelope—that is how our company developed its impact business model.

This gives a whole new meaning to project performance. Technical and financial success are balanced against the benefits for the human and ecological environments. This drive to make an impact and to harness the ingenuity and expertise of the consulting engineering community for the common good has led to the development of various approaches, including smart, sustainable asset management.

By extending an asset’s useful life through judicious management of inspection and maintenance and the use of appropriate technological tools, it is possible to significantly reduce its environmental footprint, improve safety and operational efficiency, and most importantly, reduce the resources required to replace the whole asset.

Whether through asset sustainability, carbon reduction or lifecycle analysis in a climate change perspective, each project can have one or more tangible, measurable impacts. Assessing the environmental, social and governance (ESG) impacts of projects is becoming a key objective. We do not ask ourselves how much of a positive impact a project has had after completion, we ask ourselves what impact we can create by going ahead with a project. Looking at a project in terms of its impact from the initial brainstorming session to the final delivery means giving ourselves the freedom and capacity to innovate and design solutions that are sustainable, resilient and in harmony with the environment and communities.

The ESG impacts of projects

Norda Stelo firmly believes that every company has a vital role to play in ensuring a sustainable future for generations to come. As such, its mission goes beyond mere financial profitability. This vision guided the development of Norda Stelo’s ESG impact assessment approach. Our teams have designed an in-house tool to conduct in-depth analyses of the ESG impacts of our projects. The ultimate aim of this model is to measure these impacts quantitatively, verifiably, and systematically. The impact categories selected by our teams allow us to draw up comprehensive, holistic assessments of the benefits of each project. By using this grid of 18 impact criteria from the outset of a project, our teams can integrate design elements that will generate benefits. This criteria grid also facilitates the communication of project analyses and results to clients and partners, allowing for informed decision-making and highlighting the impacts achieved. This promotes the sustainability and long-term success of our engineering projects and marks a fundamental change in the way we do business.

United we stand

In developing this impact business model, Norda Stelo is fulfilling its corporate responsibility to create a more equitable and sustainable future for society as a whole. Each company plays a crucial role in the world’s extensive supply networks. It is by recognizing this interconnectedness that companies can seize the opportunity to co-construct a better future, cultivate strong partnerships, and capitalize on virtuous synergies, because the future depends on it.