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'Extreme importance' of sustainability to organisations back to 2011 level - BIFM Sustainability Report

26 July 2013

BIFM's Sustainability in FM Report 2013 reveals that 30% of respondents say their organisations regard sustainability as 'extremely important' - slightly down on the 2012 figure, and back to the levels of 2011.

The question 'How Important is Sustainability to Your Organisation?' provides for five answers - extremely important, very important, important, not very important and not important. In 2011 it was found that 30% of respondents considered sustainability to be 'extremely important' for their organisation. This increased slightly in 2012, but was back down to 30% this year.

Another marked change is that those answering 'extremely important' or 'very important' is down on last year's figure - although both figures remain over 70%. The good news from a sustainability point-of-view is that this is still an improvement on the 2011 figure when less than 70% of organisations were seen to regard sustainability as 'extremely important' or 'very important'.

It is BIFM's 7th annual Sustainability in FM survey, and is intended to provide a barometer on how FM professionals and the businesses they represent are engaging with the sustainability agenda. The report identifies the overwhelming support for sustainability to be embedded into business operations, but also the challenges of delivering those aspirations.

Of the top five barriers to implementation success three related to engagement; engagement overall, among senior management and middle management. The report found that many FMs are not targeting the areas of highest priority relating to behaviours or processes which have the highest impact, but tend to focus on technologies. The cultural change management aspect of delivering sustainability policies is an area identified by many and reinforced by the need to have board level leadership, and that staff at every level should be actively responsible.

Legislation and increasing pressures on brands and business to demonstrate their Corporate Social Responsibility play the prominent roles in driving these agendas forward. Since 2007, there has been significant progress in the implementation of the sustainability policy within organisations, with positive ratings (excellent and very good) rising from 26 per cent to 43 per cent.

The Executive Summary is available to download at:
The full report can be accessed at

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