SmartHead Case Study – Tesco

“All you need to know about our corporate sustainability, sharing best practices, and lots of inspiration – that’s SmartHead,” says Michaela Lehotská from Tesco

Tesco is one of SmartHead‘s longest-standing clients and one of the most active companies using the SmartHead software. The company has already won three SmartHead Awards, presented annually to the most active companies in sustainability on SmartHead.

Using SmartHead over the years, Tesco has gained valuable experience, which we have decided to share with you. We interviewed Michaela Lehotská, Corporate Responsibility Manager, who gave us an insight into why Tesco decided to use Smarthead, what the company sees as the benefits of the software, and what its main strengths are.

Proper communication of corporate sustainability

  • Appropriate communication and transparency are some of the key factors in corporate sustainability. How did Tesco communicate sustainability before joining SmartHead?

From the very beginning, we have supported and promoted what matters most to our colleagues and customers – from affordability of our products, to health, the environment, and to supporting local projects. It’s one of the driving forces behind our updated mission statement – to go the extra mile every day. For customers, communities, and the planet.

We have integrated sustainability into our group strategic priorities, reflected it in business plans for all operations within Slovakia, and incorporated a sustainability criteria into our performance plans. We have set broad yet proportionate targets for CO2 reduction, food waste, diversity, inclusion, and other areas.

Corporate sustainability communication at Tesco Slovakia can be divided into two categories: internal (i.e., communication to colleagues), and external (i.e., communication to customers, the media, or the government, and non-profit sectors). Within internal communication we mainly use direct mail, internal newsletters, subpages on our own internal website, meetings, and events.

External communication was mostly covered by marketing activities, be it social media, newsletters or various advertisements on TV and radio, press releases and other PR activities, e-mail communication, in-person or online events, or on our unique website dedicated to corporate social responsibility

We are happy using SmartHead; it gives us a way to communicate our projects and create partnerships through a combination of internal and external communication, as not only companies or external environments like to visit our Sustainability Profile, but also our colleagues.

  • What did Tesco perceive to be the biggest weakness in its corporate sustainability communications before using SmartHead?

Before using the SmartHead, it was challenging to share best practices in sustainability between companies. This is where SmartHead really excels, as best practices from a wide range of industries can be found here, so we can be inspired by or compare ourselves to the best, regardless of industry. At the same time, others can be inspired by our activities.

  • What was the main factor in Tesco choosing SmartHead?

One of the decisive factors was the professional approach of the entire SmartHead team. The uniqueness of the software, practically being the first solution of its kind that we have encountered so far, also played a role. As I mentioned earlier, the possibility of sharing best-practises between companies also weighed in.

SmartHead as an excellent source of expertise in corporate sustainability

  • As an official GRI Software & Tool partner, SmartHead combines the ability to manage and report ESG/sustainability data while engaging stakeholders in corporate sustainability. What specifically does Tesco see as the benefits of the SmartHead software?

In SmartHead, we see a strong sustainability partner and a software for sharing sustainability activities, above all else. There is also a great deal of inspiration to be found here from other companies.

  • Since you started using the SmartHead software, has Tesco observed an increase in engagement and interest from internal/external stakeholders (customers, employees, business partners…) in its corporate sustainability?

It is difficult to determine precise data in this regard, but we are certainly seeing more interest in our activities. Another advantage is that all activities are clearly arranged in one place, so it is not difficult to find previous years’ activities, which have a long tradition.

  • Has SmartHead’s software helped Tesco move their corporate sustainability forward? If so, how?

We are witnessing a shift in our corporate sustainability in two main directions. Firstly because of inspiration from other companies. Sharing knowledge together moves not only our company’s sustainability forward, but that of the entire business. Sharing best practices with each other is a great way to move forward together towards a greener business. At the same time, we can share our own know-how through SmartHead and compare ourselves with companies across industries.

  • Stakeholders are the cornerstone of corporate sustainability. Has SmartHead’s software helped Tesco to involve employees more in your company’s sustainability? If so, how?

We often communicate SmartHead internally as a user-friendy software where colleagues can find all information about our corporate sustainability. Because of the platform’s ability to store Tesco’s specific sustainability commitments in addition to activities; the impacts we are creating through activities and the SDGs we are fulfilling with them, we are considering using the platform as the main source of activities shared between colleagues, hence the move from articles on the internal website to a sub-page on the Tesco Sustainability Profile on SmartHead.

  • SmartHead allows an unlimited number of administrators to manage a company’s Sustainability Profile, providing cross-department access to corporate sustainability data. Which departments work with SmartHead most often at Tesco?

Tesco’s communication and implementation of corporate social responsibility is the responsibility of the communication department, so it is our department, with the help of the Tesco Foundation coordinators, that ensures that the data is kept up to date. The communications department can effectively gather data across the company and also run some CSR activities themselves, so it’s a natural way for us to go.

Sustainable activities – best practices – of Tesco

All you need to know about company’s corporate sustainability, sharing best practices, and lots of inspiration – that’s SmartHead

Finding the right way to communicate corporate sustainability is one of the key points of approach to your stakeholders. The ability to share best practices with stakeholders and know-how between companies is valued by Tesco as one of the most important strengths of the SmartHead software.

Thousands of sustainability activities can already be found on SmartHead, from companies such as Tesco, VUB Bank, Dell Technologies, EY, Tesco, McDonald’s, Kaufland, IBM, Henkel, BMW, HB Reavis, and others.

In addition, as an official GRI Software & Tool Partner, the software enables companies to easily manage and report ESG/sustainability data, providing a combination of increasing stakeholder engagement with hard data management.

Author: Blog content courtesy of our partner, SmartHead