Overview

Brand

SUSTAINABILITY

For us here at VOK DAMS, sustainability is not only green – it has all kinds of colors. It is as colorful as the world is and as we are. And it is about creating better results – in all facets possible. As effective and efficient, as inspiring and as long-lasting as possible.

Sustainability is not just about saving resources – it is about questioning one’s approach, about finding new solutions and not being satisfied with the standard answer.

This is why we initiated a CSR team to help us think big and to focus on all three sustainability pillars: on social, ecological and economical solutions. Our multidisciplinary team is a co-working unit representing the different departments and personalities of the VOK DAMS family. It works relentlessly on new solutions and ideas to challenge standards and tackles concrete proposals and developments. As consultants, it members are on hand to help the various contact persons with a wide range of tasks in order to jointly develop solutions on how concepts can be implemented even more sustainably and how VOK DAMS itself can act even more responsibly.

 

OUR ROAD TO SUSTAINABILITY

Sustainability is about little steps as much as about big steps. As regards big steps and our pioneering spirit, we have created several groundbreaking changes for us and the industry over the past decades. In the late 1990s, we created "sustainable events", carried out the first surveys and, a little later, set new standards with a "Carbon Footprint Calculation for Events", which we, years later, developed further as the CO2 climate calculator.

In 1998 we were the first agency in Germany to be ISO certified - here, too, strict sustainability requirements applied and still apply. A little later we joined the UN Global Compact. As a result of our early and intensive commitment to sustainable action, we supported the first-ever award ceremony of the German Sustainability Award in 2008 and ensured the sustainability of the event through our consulting services.

In January 2023, the Act on Corporate Due Diligence Obligations in Supply Chains (Lieferkettensorgfaltspflichtengesetz, LkSG) came into force in Germany. The approach is good: It is about companies fulfilling their human rights responsibility and sustainability due diligence along the entire supply chains. To fulfill the supply chain due diligence obligation, our certifications help us. The major reputable standards such as ISO and TÜV provide guidance and confidence. For years, we have been regularly audited by the TÜV Rheinland Group and currently hold the following certificates:

 

ISO 20121

Our agency offers sustainable event management according to the internationally recognized ISO 20121 standard. The standard covers all three pillars of sustainability and offers a holistic approach to making events more sustainable. An ISO structure of the standard also facilitates integration into an existing management system, such as a quality management system.

 

ISO 9001

ISO 9001, the most widely used international standard, requires companies to address internal workflows, responsibilities and accountabilities within the company as well as external processes when working with customers and business partners. Sustainable event management and a quality management system in accordance with ISO 9001 also form the basis for meeting the requirements of the supply chain due diligence obligation. Like the Act on Corporate Due Diligence Obligations in Supply Chains, ISO 9001 requires, among other things, that companies analyze and reduce risks through appropriate measures and evaluate suppliers.

 

ZNU Certification

But we can do more than just ensure sustainable event management. VOK DAMS also has a certified sustainability management system. Initiated by the ZNU – Center for Sustainable Leadership at the University of Witten/Herdecke, the ZNU certification stands for an agile sustainability management system. The ZNU standard certifies more sustainable management in agencies by promoting and requiring the development of an integrated management system in the areas of environment, economy, and social affairs.

 

CREATING SUSTAINABLE RESULTS

However, what sets us apart is our mindset. Here, agile thinking and behavior meets sustainability. Since 2018, we have defined ourselves as an agile agency. For us, agile is more than just a way of working or organizing. It describes our entire mindset. And besides elements like "continuous learning", "failure acceptance", "positive attitude", "sustainable approach" has long been one of the essential characteristics that we not only live by, but also continuously train and develop. Sustainability@VOK DAMS has always been part of our culture. But now we enter a new dimension by implementing a fully sustainable management system with international acceptance, which helps us as well as our clients and partners to reach ambitious corporate responsibility goals.

 

WE SET CLEAR GOALS

On our path of optimisation, we continuously set concrete goals that relate to the three most important pillars of sustainability: Environmental, Social and Economic. Our commitment includes measures to reduce our environmental impact, promote social justice and strengthen our economic stability. We are persistent in our approach to achieving our goals, with a commitment to change, to ensure we create a better future for all. Below we have summarised our top issues that we are currently focusing on.

 

ENVIRONMENT

Our top priority in the environmental sector is to significantly reduce our agency's CO2 emissions. After achieving a remarkable 15% reduction in our footprint from 2020 to 2021, we narrowly missed our goal of further reducing CO2 emissions by 10% in 2022. Despite increased team presence in the office and a high workload since 2021, we achieved an 8.8% reduction in 2023. Our CO2 footprint (Scope 1+2) stands at 82.36t CO2e in 2023. To further optimize our energy supply, we have invested in a new, more efficient heating system to significantly reduce energy consumption and thus CO2 emissions.

In 2024, we continue to strive for a 10% reduction in CO2 emissions compared to 2021.

 

SOCIAL

Last year, our goal was to increase the male representation in project management by 2.5%. After a 3.5% increase in 2022, unfortunately, we observed a decline of 2.6% in 2023 compared to 2021. Nevertheless, at VOK DAMS, we firmly believe that diversity is key to innovation. While we have made significant progress in promoting diversity among our employees in recent years, we see further potential for improvement. To strengthen diversity in our agency, we have already introduced initiatives, including our Happy Survey and Diversity Survey, which provide all employees with the opportunity to share their opinions and suggestions for improvement on diversity, equality, and inclusion issues, either publicly or anonymously. Our goal is always to create an environment where all team members have equal opportunities, regardless of their background.

In 2024, we aim to further enhance equal opportunities in the agency, both in terms of age and gender.

 

ECONOMY

In the economic field, our focus lies on strengthening local suppliers as well as on the development and integration of product innovations. Our supplier structure is already regionally oriented, and in 2023, we were able to acquire a new major local partner to further support the industry and the local economy. We regularly review the procurement of our materials and services to ensure that we preferentially engage reputable local providers. For 2024, we aim to continue this approach. Furthermore, we are working on product innovations aimed at making processes in the event sector more sustainable and efficient.

We aim to onboard two new local suppliers as preferred partners and launch two product innovations in 2024.

 

We are convinced that by implementing our clearly defined goals, we will contribute to a sustainable future and are confident that through continuous efforts and optimisations, we can bring about a positive change.

“By constantly questioning and optimizing our own actions, monitoring what we do and did, we are in an exciting process of dialogue and improvements for more sustainability. Strictly in line with our purpose: Creating better results." – Claudia Verena Krause, Head of CSR

 

LATEST UPDATES

CREATING SUSTAINABLE RESULTS: CERTIFICATION ISO 20121

CIRCULAR ECONOMY AND AI IN THE FOCUS OF EVENTS

AI AS A GAMECHANGER FOR SUSTAINABLE EVENT MANAGEMENT?

SUCCESSFUL AGENCY MANAGEMENT WITH DE&I

BINDING 100 TONS OF CO2 IN THE WESTERWALD

METAVERSE AS A SUSTAINABLE INNOVATION DRIVER?

NFTS: A MORE SUSTAINABLE OPTION TO CONVENTIONAL GIVEAWAYS

DIVERSITY, EQUITY AND INCLUSION IN EVENTS

HEAD OF CSR CLAUDIA KRAUSE ON EVENTS OF THE FUTURE

VOK DAMS SIGNS DIVERSITY CHARTER

TAKING ACTION AGAINST CLIMATE CHANGE

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