EcoVadis is one of the world’s most comprehensive sustainability rating tools; assessing private and public companies on social, ethical and environmental impacts. Their assessment rates an organisation’s material sustainability impacts based on a thorough documentation analysis, making them a sort-after tool for ensuring transparency across the supply chain. Currently, more than 65,000 organisations globally are rated by them.
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The methodology is built – and continuously updated – on international sustainability standards (UNGC, GRI, ISO, and more), which are used to identify 21 indicators across four main pillars: Environment, Labour and Human Rights, Ethics and Sustainable Procurement.
The EcoVadis Assessment process follows a five-step journey that starts with registration and ends with recognition:
Step 1. Registration
To start the assessment process, you have to create a profile on the EcoVadis website, where you will be asked to specify your business activity and update your contact information. This information is used to create a customised questionnaire based on the industry, sector, size, and country of operations of your organisation.
Step 2. Questionnaire
Once the registration is complete, you can enter the platform and access the Dashboard page which summarises your progress, the latest news from EcoVadis, and where you can start completing the questionnaire and uploading documents.
Step 3. Expert Analysis
Once you have completed and submitted your questionnaire, EcoVadis experts will analyse your answers and the uploaded documents. The process usually takes from 6 to 8 weeks.
Step 4. Results
Your answers will be distilled into a Scorecard, which summarises: (1) your overall score with the average industry score (black marker); (2) the scores across the four sustainability themes and average industry score per theme; (3) each pillar’s weight – from 1 to 4. Additionally, the scorecard summarises the company’s strengths and improvement areas.
Step 5. Recognition
Once you receive your score, you might also receive your EcoVadis medal.
As of 2024, EcoVadis introduced changes to:
- Scoring & Medals
- 360 Watch
- Technical Features
Scoring & Medals
Companies now have the possibility of achieving a badge in recognition of their good progress on the sustainability journey.
The Committed Badge is granted to companies with a minimum score of 45, representing ‘good’ performance in the EcoVadis Methodology.
The Fast-Mover Badge identifies companies with a score between 34-44 with a minimum of 6-point improvement versus the previous assessment in an 18th months period.
Concerning medals, these will only be granted on the basis of percentiles instead of score points. The percentile compares a company’s performance with all rated companies on EcoVadis’ database over the previous 12 months.
Before the introduction of these changes, medals were assigned to companies with overall scores of at least 47 points and no theme score lower than 20. Thus, the new recognition approach is based on percentile thresholds instead of score ranges, reflecting the growing size of EcoVadis’ network.
Only companies with a minimum of 30 points per pillar can be considered for a medal and the findings of the 360 Watch can turn a company ineligible for obtaining a medal.
The EcoVadis 360 Watch uses an artificial intelligence algorithm to identify positive and negative news related to an organisation’s sustainability activities in the public domain. 360 Watch Findings are scraped from:
- Official statements or publications of administrative government bodies;
- Content of court rulings or legal settlements;
- Factual statements by the press or organisations recognised as working by scientific standards and financially neutral to the content of said statements (e.g. independent NGOs).
When 360 Watch Findings detect a combination of major violations, the organisation is affected by medal ineligibility for:
- 3 years for the Environment, Labour & Human Rights, and Sustainable Procurement themes;
- 5 years for the Ethics theme.
The effects of 360 Watch Findings on companies’ scores apply for:
- 5 years for the Environment, Labour & Human Rights, and Sustainable Procurement themes;
- 8 years for the Ethics theme.
Companies cannot appeal the 360 Watch Finding while in court. They can only appeal if the issue has been resolved and the company was found innocent.
Finally, as of 2024, the following technical updates will take place:
- Assessed companies will be able to download the questionnaire as an Excel spreadsheet;
- Immediate extensions of deadlines in the questionnaire will be possible;
- The 360 Watch Findings will take visible validity;
- There will be ongoing EcoVadis Academy courses;
- Companies will benefit from an enhanced medal design;
- Metrics benchmarking will help with more transparent communication on a company’s performance across different frameworks such as the Ecovadis methodology, CSRD and SFDR.
The EcoVadis Assessment guides organisations on their sustainability journey and presents a unique opportunity to catalyze positive change throughout supply chains. Rather than viewing it as a routine checkbox exercise, it should be considered a powerful tool to foster a culture of sustainability, both within the company and its suppliers.
DO NOT MISS OUR NEXT WEBINAR!
Join our upcoming free webinar on the 25th of January 2024 on “How to Maintain Your EcoVadis Rating in 2024”.