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ESG Data Management & Sustainability Software Market Observations


Recently I have spent a lot of time assessing the ESG and sustainability software market. I have listened to 30+ webinars from software providers, sustainability experts, consultants and analysts. I have engaged with sustainability leaders. I have read sustainability reports, and I have reflected on my own experience as an auditor for both financial reports, and for some limited assurance sustainability reports. 

And I was catching up with a report from Gartner, the renowned research and advisory firm. The report stressed the need for CIOs to upgrade their sustainability data management practices to align with the forthcoming CSRD reporting standards. An important detail that was beyond the scope of the article, however, is the urgency surrounding the implementation of these standards—they become effective for major organizations by 2024.

I agree with the premise, but let’s be honest: following Gartner’s recommendation is far easier said than done. I talk about how you could overcome some of these reporting challenges here.

ESG & Sustainability Challenges


ESG data is scattered across organizations, resides in multiple systems, is managed by different owners, and is subject to varying governance practices. It’s a mishmash of formats, making life harder than solving a Rubik’s Cube blindfolded. The typical organizations response involves tedious downloading, uploading, spreadsheet transfers, and manual processes, culminating in reports that demand significant time and effort to validate.

Sure, There’s a myriad of new software promising to solve some ESG reporting needs—carbon accounting, for instance. But here’s the catch: they often fall short in three ways. Firstly, they address certain aspects of ESG reporting, but not all. Secondly, they demand clean data in specific formats. Lastly, they force organizations to shape themselves around the software instead of the othe

r way around. Frankly, it’s like trying to force a square peg into a round hole.

Now, if I were a CIO, CSO, or CFO, I’d prioritize tackling the biggest ESG challenge: data management.

To overcome this hurdle, I’d be on the lookout for a comprehensive solution that checks all the boxes:

  1. Seamlessly connects to all disparate systems and data sources, providing live data access with lightning speed.
  2. Offers automated and auditable data cleansing and transformation processes, bidding farewell to those dreaded spreadsheets.
  3. Integrates various systems, software, algorithms, and calculations along with an array of data sources, creating a robust end-to-end solution.
  4. Provides the flexibility to swiftly design a responsive solution tailored to the organization’s unique needs and adaptable to different reporting frameworks.
  5. Ensures auditability and robust security measures.
  6. Comes at a reasonable price in terms of licensing, implementation, and organizational resource consumption.

Imagine having data management tools that meet these criteria—a solid foundation for an all-encompassing ESG solution. They might even render the need for specialist software targeting limited ESG aspects obsolete.

If this sounds like a breath of fresh air to 

your overwhelmed C-suite, look no further than r4apps. We specialize in delivering 100% success in solving complex problems. Let us be your trusted partner on your ESG journey.

Disclaimer: Side effects may include increased efficiency, reduced stress levels, and an overwhelming sense of accomplishment.

kelly allin

Author: Kelly Allin