ESG might be on the SaaS agenda, but there is still a long wait to go. According to Serena Capital survey:
- 13% of SaaS startups have assessed their carbon footprint.
- Only 7% are made up of at least 50% women.
Given that Atomico found that more than half of newly-raised venture funds were channeled into companies with a pre-existing sustainability statement or ESG policy listed on their website, the race is on for SaaS companies to verify and improve their ESG credentials. Below are three ways of doing just that:
Accreddited certifications are a simple way of highlighting your ESG credentials both internally and externally. More than a box-ticking exercise, accreditations from the likes of B Corp or EcoVadis show your business’ commitment to practices including sustainability, charitable giving and employee benefits.
What’s more, this type of certification is becoming more common, and therefore something investors and potential employees will likely be looking for. Serena Capital found that a quarter of SaaS companies either have an ESG certification, or are considering getting one.
This rise in ESG consciousness has created a new arm of SaaS products designed to help companies verify and improve their environmental and social goals.
For example, Berlin-based Plan A has developed a SaaS platform that automates ESG reporting and Silicon Valley-based pulsESG’s platform enables companies to track and improve their ESG compliance. This includes help tracking things like carbon emissions, energy efficiency, and health and safety.
3. D&I diagnostic
Diversity and inclusion is more than hosting events, and sharing posts on social media. Take time to review your diversity and inclusion metrics and take action to improve them. Important metrics to focus on are: hiring stats, pay equality and representation. For example, the Future of SaaS’ SaaS Landscape 2021 showed how far companies still need to go with only 8% of respondents reporting a disability and just 2% of female respondents in leadership positions.
You can read more about ESG and what investors are looking for in the full report. Check it out here.