The Sustainable EnterpriseThe Rezidor Hotel Group:Sustainability Report 2012 Annelli Nealon: 10714437 10/19/2012
The Rezidor Hotel Group began in the 1960‟s and now owns over 400 hotels in 70 Countriesacross Europe, the Middle East and Africa. Rezidor host a portfolio of iconic hotels andbrands, they are passionate about innovative hospitality and groundbreaking designs. Theyhave won numerous awards for their service concepts, culinary prestige and ResponsibleBusiness Programme.The Sustainability ReportTheir 34 page Sustainability Report 2012 is an extensive outline of the activities they arecarrying out in order to be „Responsible‟ for their impact on society and the environment. It ispacked with clear facts on key resource measurements.The award winning Responsible Business Program is about proactively taking responsibilityfor the environment and local communities. This has been in effect since the launch of theirfirst environmental policy in 1989. “Rezidor‟s Responsibility Business Programme is built onthe principles of sustainable development and the triple bottom-line, where all hotels strive totake economic, social, ethical and environmental issues into consideration when makingdecisions in their everyday work” (The Rezidor Hotel Group 2012).Their claim of being Responsible is backed up by actions that clearly indicate that this is notjust „fluffy language‟, irrelevant or suggestive „gobbledygook‟ to „greenwash‟ the exterior ofthe company in the eyes of the public. Credible proof of eco labels such as the ISO 14001,Green Key and the Nordic Swan Eco-Label indicate true „best in class‟ approach.Why is sustainability important to this company?The President & CEO, Kurt Ritter, claims that sustainability is important because „we have ashared responsibility for the planet and the resources it contains‟. The programme is alsoimportant because it aligns with company objectives in a mission to be an industry leader andmaintain long term profits. There is no doubt that being an innovative industry leader inpopular areas such as sustainability is attractive to stakeholders who are focused on corporatesocial responsibility (CSR) and environmental issues. Many customers these days, B2B andB2C, won‟t buy from or do business with companies that have a bad CSR/environmentalreputation.Facts from The UN World Tourism Organisation and the World Travel and Tourism Council,in the report, state how three identified critical global impacts, climate change; resource useand employment, affect the industry‟s business and value chain. The tourism sector faceshuge risks if weather patterns, legislative pressures and taxation all increase. Hence, if longterm profits are to be maintained in the industry action must be taken now, makingsustainability in the forefront of importance to Rezidor.
What is the company doing to address sustainability?The Hotel Group address sustainability in every aspect of their business. The CEO highlightshow it is each employees responsibility to be environmentally conscious; for this reasontraining is provided (and compulsory) for all staff, Heads of Departments and GeneralManagers. The Responsible Business Department report directly to the CEO and theExecutive Committee are regularly updated on Plans, Progress and Strategies.Their involvement in initiatives such as the Global Responsible Business Month (2011),World Cleanup (2012), the UN Global Compact and caring for Climate initiative, „ThinkPlanet‟ and many more; show that they are actively taking the time to be engaged in externaldevelopment as well as internal.Pioneering programmes to conserve resources are integrated into hundreds of their hotels atthe renovation and construction phase, and reviewed regularly for possible improvements.Integrating the newest technologies in water saving, thermal insulation, waste and recyclingmanagement, carbon emission control and energy reduction is applied to the majority of theirhotels.How well have the company succeeded in sustainability?The successes of the Rezidor‟s responsible actions are clear to see in their key performancemetrics and comparison statistics, stated in the report. The incremental improvement fromyear to year of their sustainability reports are complimented by an increase in recognition byestablished, recognised, environmental organisations such as the Ethisphere Institute, UnitedStates, who awarded Rezidor one of the World‟s Most Ethical Companies 2010, 2011, 2012.At present Rezidor are succeeding in sustainability. They have received eco-labels for 202hotels (61%) and have made it their mission to 100% certification by 2015.These eco-labels include: Austrian Eco-label (3) BREEAM (1) Gold Leaf (1) Green Globe (2) Green Hospitality Award, Ireland (12) Green Key (75) The Green Tourism Business Scheme, UK (24) Green Leaf, South Africa (1) Hungarian Green Hotel Award (2) ISO 14001 (19) Maltese Eco-Label (1) Nordic Swan Eco-Label (38) Tunisian Eco-Label (1)
The Green Key is a non-profit, non-Governmental programme hosting the largest global eco-labels for accommodation; from which Rezidor have 75 accredited locations. To be awardeda Green Key label hotels must meet a list of criteria based on the Green Key 5 pillars ofsustainability and responsibility (Green Key 2012). Similarly the Nordic Swan Eco-Label hasa stringent set of criteria, in compliance with the ISO 14024 eco-labelling system, that mustbe met to receive its‟ accreditation (Nordic Ecolabelling 2012). This proves that the Rezidormake significant commitments in addressing sustainability and are growing in their successof achieving their responsible mission.When compared with other top global hotel groups, the Hilton and the InterContinental HotelGroup, Rezidor stand somewhat in the middle. The Hilton has 100% ISO 14001 certificationon their hotels, and their percentage of resource reduction outweigh the Rezidor by a small,but no doubt significant, number (Hilton Worldwide 2012). The InterContinental HotelGroup, on the other hand, have not quite yet met their mission of 50% green engagement ofhotels and only one third of staff have received green training. However, with 4,400 hotels towork on it is of no surprise that it will take this hotel group longer to catch up with theindustry leaders than the Rezidor (IHG 2012).I think it is fair to conclude that the Rezidor Hotel Group do a remarkable job of striving forsustainability. With some of their hotels using 30% less energy per square metre that theaverage household I would feel confident that by staying in one of their award winning hotelsI am actually decreasing my own carbon footprint rather than increasing it, which is often notthe case when we engage in leisurely activities.
ReferencesThe Rezidor Hotel Group (2012) Sustainability Report [online] Available @http://www.rezidor.com/phoenix.zhtml?c=205430&p=respsustainabilityreports viewed(12/10/12)The Hilton Worldwide (2012) corporate social responsibility/ sustainability [online]Available @ http://www.hiltonworldwide.com/corporate-responsibility/sustainably/ (viewed16/10/12)The Hilton Worldwide (2012) ISO details [online] Available @http://news.hiltonworldwide.com/index.cfm/newsroom/detail/14408 (viewed 16/10/12)The InterContinental Hotel Group (2012) Corporate Responsibility Report [online] Available@ http://www.ihgplc.com/index.asp?pageid=740 (viewed 16/10/12)Green Key (2012) Green Key eco- label home page [online] available @ http://www.green-key.org/ (viewed 18/10/12)Nordic Ecolabelling (2012) The Nordic Swan Eco- Label home page [online] Available @http://www.nordic-ecolabel.org (viewed 18/10/12)