Sustainability management

Sustainability management serves to help embed sustainability in our core business and ensures that whenever economic and environmental or social considerations affect one another, overlaps are dealt with in an efficient, solution-oriented way. It also assists in shaping sustainability-related guidelines such as legal requirements or standards that apply to the company.

Sustainability management is closely connected with METRO GROUP’s risk and opportunity management. Management is assisted in systematically identifying, assessing and controlling potential risks due to deviations from sustainability targets and opportunities.

More information on risk and opportunity management is available in the Risk and opportunity report of the Annual Report 2015/16.

As there are many different companies and retail formats within METRO GROUP, clear structures have been put in place to ensure that the strategic and operational levels interlock optimally. Our objective is to preserve the sales lines’ operational independence so that we can meet the requirements of local markets and customers. At the same time, it is important to tap synergies with a view to achieving the group’s shared strategic goals. The structure and processes of METRO GROUP’s sustainability management enable us to deliver on this.

Sustainability Board (Grafik)Sustainability Board (Grafik)

As an official METRO GROUP body, the Sustainability Board makes sure that the right strategic course is pursued with respect to the group’s sustainability performance and key issues are covered by means of relevant targets. The Board consists of the director responsible for sustainability, the CEOs of the sales lines and the sustainability managers from METRO AG and the sales lines. The sustainability managers are responsible for making sure that sustainability is integrated into the business at the level of the sales lines and the group. This is done by rolling out this concept in the various corporate divisions and taking it into account during decision-making.

Round table on corporate responsibility

The round table on corporate responsibility acts as an interface between the strategic and operational dimensions of sustainability. This body prepares decisions to be approved by the Sustainability Board and helps to implement them. Action taken by the individual sales lines that contributes to achieving METRO GROUP’s sustainability targets is coordinated by the round table. In this manner, the committee serves as a platform that brings together all the sustainability managers and allows them to pool their expertise. Synergies are created, for example when the participants discuss how they view certain topics and deal with them. These can help the operating divisions to manage their specific issues.

Operational responsibility lies with the sales lines

The sales lines are responsible for defining specific targets and measures at the operational level, acting on them in day-to-day business and ensuring that goals are met in a sustained fashion. They inform the Sustainability Board about their progress via the round table. Each METRO GROUP sales line has developed its own approach – based on the specific requirements of its operational business – to deal with relevant aspects of sustainability.

Each of these approaches is presented in the chapter Sustainability approaches of the sales lines.