Although the Digital with Purpose movement was initially aimed at big multinationals, it has real relevance for smaller organisations, including law firms, Luís Neves insists.
But where to start?
There are a number of components of the framework that will apply to any organisation, Luís says, and it’s important to start with purpose. “What is the purpose of your company? How can your firm contribute to those 17 sustainable development goals? Where can you make an impact?”
The second aim should be to change negative impacts into positives.
“So in a law firm if you implement more digital technology you can improve your footprint because you can avoid people coming into the office everyday, you can improve the infrastructure of your building, you can work in less space.
“There are a lot of things that can happen through the deployment of technology in relation to climate, the circular economy (where things are designed for re-use or re-purposing rather than disposal), as well as in the supply chain where you can reduce your emissions further down the chain.”
For law firms issues related to privacy and security will be key. But this is a complex area, lighting on a range of difficult issues including behaviour, compliance, freedom of expression, governance and safety, he says.
For bigger companies, GeSI has developed up to 80 different indicators to guide them on this very sensitive issue. For a smaller organisation, the framework can be scaled back and adapted.
“There are lots of indicators that could be translated for a law firm the same way that we are translating them to SMEs. Again it is all about purpose – how your operation contributes to a better society and a better environment.”
An interview with Luís Neves,
CEO of GeSI (Global Enabling Sustainability Initiative)