A blog by Amanda Williams, Sustainability Manager

Landmarc has a longstanding relationship with Business in the Community (BITC). As a corporate member we work with them on a wide range of issues that are essential to creating a more sustainable future, from wellbeing and diversity to social value and environmental protection.

Amanda Williams

Sustainability Manager Amanda Williams is part of the assessment team for the Environmental Sustainability Category at this year’s BITC Responsible Business Awards.

Amanda Williams, Sustainability Manager, was therefore delighted to be invited by BITC to be an Award Assessor for their flagship programme, the Responsible Business Awards, for the second time in 2018. The Responsible Business Awards are the Oscars of responsible business, with organisations of every size and scale competing on an equal footing for recognition for the initiatives they have driven forward in their organisations. Amanda shares her experience here.

“This year the awards feature 11 categories, but I was part of a team of professional environmentalists tasked with assessing entries to the Environmental Sustainability Award, which recognises businesses that are developing models of smart growth or growing their business in a way that leads to better use of resources, nurtures healthy ecosystems or tackles climate change.

“Applications can be submitted by businesses that are tackling either a specific sustainability challenge or taking an holistic approach to embedding environmental sustainability across the whole organisation. As assessors we were looking for evidence that the business is creating value for itself and for society by addressing the challenges of sustainable resource use, healthy ecosystems and climate change.

“The nominations were required to demonstrate the contribution the business is making to those challenges, the benefits to the business (including economic benefits), and the benefit to wider society. Excellent collaboration with stakeholders and evidence of innovation were essential, and the initiative had to go above and beyond what is required by law or established as the norm in responsible business today.

“The awards assessment process is traditionally extremely robust, and this year it included an additional stage, which involved awards assessors reviewing and marking applications online in advance of a formal assessment day when the longlist and the finalists are agreed. The assessment day was hosted by Barclays in Canary Wharf and I was once again impressed by the degree of scrutiny in the process, with much deliberation and discussion about the relative benefits of each entry and great care taken to provide detailed and constructive feedback to assist applicants in developing their programmes further.

“As an awards assessor, it is essential that you maintain confidentiality about the detail of the discussions so it was a great relief when the longlist was announced during April’s Responsible Business Week.

“Huge congratulations to the 14 organisations that made it through to the longlist stage of the process, as this is a great achievement in itself. The finalists will be revealed this evening (3 July) at a Gala Dinner hosted by Lenny Henry.

“The experience of being an award assessor was extremely valuable, as it provides an opportunity to review initiatives from a range of organisations in some detail, networking with other sustainability professionals from major organisations, and sharing the benefit of your own experience with others. It was inspiring to see so many fantastic applications, and provided lots of food for thought to take back to our own organisations.”