EcoVadis Response Check

EcoVadis Response Check: the best way to make sure your answers are accurate

ecovadis case response check

DFGE is the official partner of EcoVadis since December 2015. Since 2016, DFGE had the opportunity to support various companies with EcoVadis Response Checks.

EcoVadis is a sustainability rating platform for global supply chains. Buyers asked the suppliers to be rated. Suppliers have then to fill in a declarative questionnaire, to which they attach various supporting documents such as policies, internal processes, certificates. Then all the documentation is analyzed by EcoVadis experts, under a defined assessment methodology, and scores are made available to supplier and requesting buyers.

“We are happy to support such a wide range of companies with EcoVadis Response Checks. The Response Check helps them tackle short-term improvements, to make sure their answers actually reflect the company’s performance. They can then focus on actual improvements when the scorecard is published.”
picture of Dr. Thomas Fleissner
Dr.-Ing. Thomas Fleissner, founder & CEO DFGE

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Challenges of participating in EcoVadis

Large corporations with experience

DFGE supported a large company, a worldwide leader in its market, with core competencies in the areas of healthcare and agriculture with an EcoVadis Response Check.

As a large company, our customer has a robust sustainability management in place — committed through many policies, with various actions implemented, all described in the sustainability report, where related KPIs can be found.

With such an advanced sustainability management system, the challenge lies in streamlining existing information into dedicated requests such as EcoVadis.

Therefore, our customer wished to know more about the EcoVadis methodology and how they could best leverage existing sustainability documents.

For companies answering for the first time

It was the first time that the company, a major player in worldwide logistics, was asked to take the EcoVadis questionnaire.

Though the company was confident about their robust sustainability program, they did not know EcoVadis.

Thus, they were neither aware of the EcoVadis rating criteria, nor did they have experience with this complex questionnaire. They opted for the Response Check to know how to prioritize and check that their answers were in line with EcoVadis.

For companies at the subsidiary level

DFGE provided an EcoVadis Response Check to the subsidiary of a large logistics group composed of various business units and different legal sub-entities.

Many of them fill already the EcoVadis questionnaire. The challenge in this case was to provide documents for the right scope of application, without duplicating the reporting effort.

In addition, their customer set a certain target in terms of scoring that needed to be reached in order to remain a supplier.

To identify how they could quickly improve the current score and reporting, they asked DFGE to perform a Response Check at subsidiary level.

For a small company

DFGE carried out an EcoVadis Response Check for a SMB (small medium sized business), a construction company based in Germany.

Operating in an already well-regulated environment such as Germany can make it difficult to know which supporting documents to attach for the EcoVadis rating.

Also, normally a SMB has no department or responsible employee for sustainability, hence the need to resort to external experts.

The company thus opted for our solution to better understand how to fill in the questionnaire and which type of documents to add.

For better ratings – EcoVadis Response Check from DFGE

The solution: Response Check

All these challenges can be addressed with the EcoVadis Response Check executed by DFGE.

Most of the customers first take part in the free webinars offered by DFGE to learn more about the methodology, and then wished to know how this applies to their own answers with the EcoVadis Response Checks.

The EcoVadis Response Check consists checking whether:

  • Questions have not been answered or not properly ticked
  • A company has clearly chosen the wrong question path
  • Answers have not been provided in the appropriate format, e.g. documents are not respecting EcoVadis requirements
  • Attachments/Links to documents are missing

In addition, DFGE also pays attention on new questions from one year and focuses on priority questions for more in-depth feedback.

Devil often lies in detail

Results: Improvements

The findings of the EcoVadis Response Check lead to:

  • Add missing references. This helps the EcoVadis analysts to find the right answer, especially when the company has many documents, which is usually the case for large multinational corporations.
  • Activate questions to make sure all is rated
  • Provide existing documents which have the right format
  • Focus on important questions to improve/refine them
  • Identify further improvement areas which are then confirmed by the scorecard

As a general trend, the general or theme-related scores have all increased. In addition, our customers could meet their customers’ expectations by reaching the scores targets.

Many of these customers rely on DFGE’s expertise also for their sustainability strategy and their participation in other sustainability ratings like UNGC, CDP, GRI or SDG.

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