Sustainability 101 Case Example: Gannett Fleming

Gannett Fleming is a planning, design, technology, and construction management service firm with more than 2,000 employees in 65 countries and with 2014 revenues in excess of $327 million.

With respect to Gannett Fleming’s work in the private sector, there is a clear link between being green and the bottom line. Nearly $70 million of the global “infrastructure and environmental” firm’s annual revenue is generated from private-sector clients who elect only to work with firms that have a documented corporate sustainability program.

The results of Gannett Fleming’s internal strategic sourcing program created an “aha moment” among the firm’s leadership. In mid-2013, the firm formalized a partnership with a large national retailer to handle procurement of office supplies, products, office furniture, shipping, and equipment. The program goal is to realize cost reductions from contractual pricing, reduce the administrative burden associated with accounts payable, eliminate unnecessary office supply purchases and waste, and be better equipped to monitor its cleaning product purchases to ensure it uses environmentally friendly supplies. Within only one year, Gannett Fleming has been able to demonstrate:

  • 38 percent of the products it purchased included recycled, remanufactured, or other green attributes.
  • None of its corporate purchases were made at a retail store, which means it eliminated any carbon emissions associated with travel to a store.
  • The company had 191 fewer deliveries for office supplies in 2014 than 2013, eliminating 860 pounds of CO2.
  • It significantly reduced the administrative burden associated with processing payments for supplies, which saved time and money.

[This case study originally appeared in GEMI’s Sustainability 101 Quick Guide.]

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