Building a truly sustainable supply chain sounds easier than it actually is. Entrepreneurs have to carry out a large number of different of tasks, ranging from thorough research of key figures and data, the obligation of suppliers to provide data, to the establishment of an infrastructure enabeling the company to produce a CSR report not only once a year, but ideally at any time. And thus providing a 24/7 overview of your own carbon footprint.

It is the only way for the management to uncover potential grievances as well as trends at an early stage and to take fast corresponding decisions. But what are the key figures that are relevant for the companys carbon footprint?

On the one hand, it is the products themselves or their manufacturing which contribute to the carbon footprint of a fashion brand, and on the other hand, the way of transportation. At the latest in your annual CSR report, it becomes visible how many goods were transported by ship, plane, train or truck – and what CO2 emissions are associated with them. Or how many tonnes of organic cotton, recycled fabrics or down were processed. Then, ideally, the emission values of the various suppliers and transport service providers are compared with each other and consequences are derived.

The Challenge

Clever companies do not record the carbon footprint of every single product or the entire brand only once a year as part of the mandatory CSR report, but on a monthly – or even better – a weekly basis. In this way, decision-makers can always access up-to-date key figures and use them for their tactical and strategic decisions.

However, the compilation and, above all, the consolidation of the data required for this purpose requires a considerable amount of time. Especially if you do not have direct access to the suppliers. However, numerous suppliers and manufacturers are already represented in the common index lists and are willing to provide information on their manufacturing process and its key figures.

ERP Systems are a Convenient Solution because…

Once the corresponding basic data has been stored in the ERP system, you may call up every data relevant for the companys carbon footprint at any time, even via smartphone. Suppliers and service providers can or must independently enter data relevant for the carbon footprint via intranet portals. If they forget to do so, they are automatically reminded. The missing sustainability data is clearly marked in the ERP system. The effort for maintenance and monitoring of the required data is thus considerably reduced.

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