PrimeGlobal: Championing Sustainability & Social Responsibility
Talent DevelopmentNovember 23, 2020
PrimeGlobal is passionate about promoting sustainability and corporate social responsibility through its staff, member firms and wider stakeholders. Alongside being named the IAB Sustainable Organization of the year. PrimeGlobal also launched initiatives to make events environmentally sustainable, promoted the benefits of diversity, and encouraged member firms to have a positive social impact and to prepare sustainability reports.
The PrimeGlobal Planet initiative was created to lessen the environmental footprint created by PrimeGlobal events. This sustainability initiative produces events that incorporate environmental considerations throughout all stages of the planning process in order to minimise the negative impact on the environment.
PrimeGlobal focuses on producing green events that go beyond specific actions such as recycling, serving local and organic food, or reducing printing. While on site, PrimeGlobal strives to promote at least one initiative in each of these areas – ranging from accommodation, food and beverage, meeting venues and transport.
PrimeGlobal was proud to work with Thomson Reuters to launch a multi-year global partnership, which included hosting a series of events and thought leadership content on inclusion, diversity and women’s leadership. PrimeGlobal encouraged member firms to invest in social responsibility efforts such as charitable donations and projects that give back to the community through teambuilding events that also provide networking opportunities for members. To create yet more impact, PrimeGlobal encouraged member firms to prepare sustainability reports that demonstrate good practices to their clients.
Partnering with suppliers on the Green Planet initiative helped to reduce the organisation’s carbon footprint. Some examples include:
• Using water pitchers instead of bottled water;
• Working with chefs to select food items from sustainable vendors, and local and fresh items;
• Negotiating with audio-visual suppliers to secure favourable Wi-Fi costs to utilise event mobile instead of printed agendas;
• Selecting off-site venues within walking distance to eliminate transportation, and
• Selecting gifting vendors that provide socially conscious gifts – with proceeds benefiting causes and using environmentally friendly materials.
PrimeGlobal’s sustainability efforts also included selecting hotel partners that have aligned initiatives. For example, at the 2019 Women’s Leadership Conference, for every room night booked, one meal was donated to Feed America. As a result over 500 meals were provided to families in need. Hotels are selected for conservation of water, choice of detergents for towels and sheets, energy conservation, and use of renewable energy and lighting using low-impact fluorescent bulbs.
A highlight of the partnership with Thomson Reuters was the virtual Women’s Leadership Conference, attended by 300 participants from four continents. Working with Thomson Reuters increased awareness, while influencing the profession with education on unconscious bias and gender discrepancies.
PrimeGlobal employees work remotely. Working ‘green’ makes a significant impact in three key areas: daily commute, office space and data energy. Prior to working remotely, employees were commuting to work by car for just under one hour each day – approximately 32 miles, which equates to about 3.2 tons of CO2 per person every year. Another advantage of working remotely is the reduction of data energy. Utilising the cloud is more energy-efficient and has a smaller carbon footprint than on-premise servers.
The PrimeGlobal staff team have led various initiatives to partner with member firms to benefit wider society. Examples of these include:
• 2019 World Conference: 150 meals were provided to local shelters in Rome;
• 2019 Tax and Assurance Conference: 150 prosthetic hands were donated to children missing a hand. Delegates were challenged to complete the task of building prosthetic hands by using only one hand;
• 2019 Marketing/IT Conference: Proceeds from gifts purchased by PrimeGlobal benefited breast cancer research. Delegates received stylish socks during a scheduled ‘pink’ coffee break;
• 2019 Emerging Leaders Conference: 500 pairs of socks were donated to the homeless. For every pair PrimeGlobal gifted, Bombas donated one pair on PrimeGlobal’s behalf;
• 2020 Tax and Business Conference: 180 care packages were donated to veterans and service dogs. Delegates were assigned to teams and challenged to complete tasks building care packages for veterans suffering from PTSD, and their service dogs.
As part of its initiatives, PrimeGlobal encourages member firms to implement their own sustainability efforts. Many member firms are committed to giving back to the community through various corporate social responsibility initiatives. For example, many firms:
• Provide paid leave to give back to the community: Sikich’s Focusing on Raising Community Engagement (Force) initiative offers employees four hours of paid leave per year to volunteer. Krost and BLS have similar schemes;
• Match staff donations: KSM bolsters individual volunteer efforts with a $500 donation to any not-for-profit organisations at which employees volunteer;
• Have polices to reduce their environmental footprint: KCoe runs a computer recycling program, paperless processes and paperless employee training, and offers recycling bins in offices;
• Establish funds to support the community: Buzzacott set up a fund to help children and young people from deprived backgrounds;
• Establish diversity and inclusion policies: AAFCPAs have a strong diversity and inclusion policy and committee.
PrimeGlobal encourages reporting by suppliers against our Green Planet KPIs. PrimeGlobal also encourages members to track their carbon footprints to see how small choices can make a significant difference. For example, taking public transport, selecting one non-beef meal, turning off cooling, heating and lights, and using reusable water bottles can significantly reduce personal environmental impact. For a two-day conference, just one attendee can save over 4,000 litres of water – enough to fill 15 bathtubs – and close to 500 kilograms of CO2 – enough to take a car off the road for 1,200 miles. Attendees track their footprint savings on a web page. PrimeGlobal also encourages member firms to prepare sustainability reports which are promoted on our CSR and Sustainability page.