As Randstad is a people-centered business, we have a strong sense of responsibility to support the preservation of our planet through the UN-sponsored Net Zero coalition. This initiative encompasses the whole of society: from businesses to governments, educational institutions to communities – every aspect of our countries and communities has a role to play in decimating greenhouse gas emissions to as close to zero as possible. These emissions are generated by human activities, trap heat, and contribute to significant climate change damage.
The world of work is our core business at Randstad; we need to ensure that the world is truly preserved for both present and future generations to enjoy and thrive. That’s why we joined the Business Ambition for 1.5°C, alongside over 1,000 other companies who collectively represent more than USD 23 trillion in market capitalization – more than the GDP of the United States.
Together, we are working in line with UN Sustainability Goal 13: Climate Change. To make sure we stay within the 1.5°C limit set by the Paris Agreement, we've got to cut emissions by 45% before 2030 and achieve net zero by 2050. These goals require fundamental changes in how countries, businesses, and all entities operate, produce, and consume.
how Randstad contributes
At a global level, Randstad has set Science-Based Targets (SBTis). These targets offer us a well-defined roadmap so that we can reduce our emissions in a way that helps prevent the most disastrous results of climate change. In essence, these help us towards becoming future-proof.
Our dedicated governance structure supports the steering of these targets by focusing on 5 key areas. These include:
1. a sustainable mobility policy
Randstad aims to transition to electric vehicles (EVs) where possible and reduced mileage due to hybrid working options. By first focusing on our markets with larger car fleets and gradually implementing EVs, we have seen a 29% reduction in emissions since 2019. Beyond this, in Germany for example, business travel is limited, but where impossible to avoid, rail journeys are climate-neutral thanks to a framework agreement with the railroad company. We also have an e-bike plan for flex staff to reach their work at client locations that are difficult to reach by public transport.
2. energy-efficiency in buildings
Our offices continue to transition towards energy-efficiency, including improved operational practices by our teams, leading to a 22% reduction in emissions over the last 4 years. Randstad in Belgium, for instance, is certified for BREEAM (Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Method), and already has 100% renewable energy in place. 75-90% of mail is digital and ‘smart’ printers save 20% of paper and ink waste.
3. conversion to renewable electricity
In 2022, 96% of electricity used by Randstad was from sustainable sources, up from 40% the year before. This has led to a 92% reduction in this emissions category since 2019. An example is our head office in the Netherlands, which has made the transition to 100% renewable energy, including investments in solar. Our Tempo Team trained 21 solar panel mechanics by July this year, and will soon have new training spots reserved again for new solar panel mechanic apprentices.
4. sustainable business travel
As a people business, our environmental impact is significantly lower than other sectors. Our operations are mostly localized, with many branches near clients and talent, resulting in reduced travel and CO2 emissions. While our impact is already minimal, we continue to actively work on reducing our carbon footprint through targeted measures. And when we do need to travel, we try to focus on energy-efficient options like rail. Moreover, our travel provider includes CO2 reports for flights and indicates these emissions on a cost center level, so that as a whole organization, we are fully aware and take ownership of this. With limitations on travel, we have seen a 27% reduction in this emissions category since 2019.
5. supplier engagement policy
We strive to partner with like minded organizations and encourage our suppliers to share our vision. Currently, suppliers who account for approximately 25% of our downstream emissions have committed to climate change targets. We are also improving our systems to better track emissions per supplier.
our colleagues around the world continue to step up and take action to improve our overall carbon footprint
In 2022, Randstad India planted over 2,000 saplings in northern India in just one day. Steps were taken towards sustainability, such as replacing plastic water bottles with reusable glass ones at their Bangalore office, and upcoming plans involve the installation of solar panels at major sites in Bangalore and Chennai to promote greener energy usage. On Women’s Day this year, the team supported the plantation of 3,208 trees, creating over 260 workdays of employment for rural communities. These trees can offset approximately more than 64,000 kilograms of CO2 every year after maturity. In the long term, these trees will be assets for rural communities in the form of fruits, fodder, medicines, and other NTFPs (non timber forest produce).
Randstad Portugal signed the Lisbon Green Capital 2020 Commitment - Action Lisbon 2030. In 2021 and 2022, they promoted environmental awareness through activities like the Green Commitment Game. They organized special days focused on sustainability with internal teams and collaborated with a social entity supporting people with disabilities in agriculture. Efforts include reducing single-use plastics, enhancing recycling, and training team members in daily sustainability practices. The team also has an increase in electric or hybrid vehicles in their Randstad fleet.
Randstad Norway holds ISO 9001 and 14001 certifications and aims to enhance environmental consciousness by decreasing paper usage and mitigating electricity-related environmental impact through LED lighting and renewable energy sources. The team is also able to track employees' carbon footprint via a web-based tool and conducts sustainability awareness training for employees.
Randstad Hungary moved to a new office in Budapest, a BREEAM Excellent certified nearly-zero-energy building (NZEB). They stopped purchasing diesel cars and installed an electric car charging station. Waste separation is rigorously practiced through three distinct containers placed within the office. Recycling efforts extend to used batteries and light bulbs, with provisions for personal waste disposal, and printing is restricted to essential obligations, embracing a paperless approach.
In Spain last year, 92 Randstad employees, 112 family members and 50 people with disabilities participated in environmental volunteering. They planted 485 trees and made and dispersed 1,807 seed balls.
our Net Zero ambassadors
At a global level, Randstad has a Net Zero programme for employees to become Ambassadors of our sustainable initiatives. Ambassadors build bridges across our operating markets and countries, sharing ideas and best practices as well as the impact these have on communities. Currently, 23 different markets are represented by 135 ambassadors.
Due to our focus on people-centric operations, our environmental footprint is considerably smaller compared to other industries. The majority of our activities take place within local markets, with numerous nearby offices for clients and talent, significantly cutting down on travel and CO2 emissions. Although our impact is relatively limited, we remain committed to reducing our carbon footprint and making a significant contribution wherever possible. For more information, please take a look at our 2023 Local Sustainability Initiatives Report.