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3 tips for improving your 2024 CDP score

As we wrap up the first quarter of the year, many of us are looking forward to a well-deserved break after the busy reporting season. But if you are a sustainability professional, the upcoming quarter is usually synonymous with CDP reporting – which can be an administrative burden for many. Hot off the press from the CDP Awards conference at the ChangeNOW summit in Paris, here are our experts’ top tips for making your 2024 response the most effective and efficient one to date.
3 tips for CDP reporting

1. Be aware of the 2024 questionnaire and timeline changes

For the next reporting cycle, CDP is transforming the way it collects data from over 23 000 companies. Firstly, CDP is combining the three existing questionnaires (Climate, Water Security and Forests) into one CDP Corporate Questionnaire, so that companies asked to respond across multiple environmental issues can do so in a single place, as well as encouraging a more holistic and balanced disclosure across different environmental issues. Further, supply chain questions will be spread across the questionnaire rather than having a separate section. Organizations will have to demonstrate their understanding of the various actors in their value chain and interconnections between them. Previously, this information was exclusively gathered through the forests questionnaire, but is now being collected for all environmental issues.

And speaking of a holistic approach, more emphasis will be put on the environment as its entirety, rather than climate only. More extensive assessment of dependencies and impacts will be included, rather than just risks and opportunities, throughout ecosystems (including land use, biodiversity and plastics) can be expected.

In terms of resource allocation for working on the CDP disclosure, bear in mind that this year the reporting cycle has been shifted: rather than reporting from April to July, the platform for disclosure will now open on 4 June 2024, with a deadline to submit on 18 September 2024. This might impact any holiday plans therefore plan early!

The CDP reporting season isn’t just about hitting a deadline

Pola Nachyla – Position Green

2. Don’t think about this as “another” reporting season

Reporting to CDP is not answering another set of new questions, but it is aligned with a company’s work towards sustainability work transparency and reporting compliance. For CDP, it is all about transparency and putting in the work. The more your company has done to assess and integrate climate or nature related risks and strategies into the DNA of a business, the more likely you will do well when it comes to scoring.

And for those of you experiencing reporting fatigue, rest assured that CDP is working globally to align with the current and incoming frameworks. For the past several years, CDP has incorporated TCFD considerations into the questionnaires to streamline the reporting process. Therefore, conducting a TCFD assessment is an essential piece of the puzzle in receiving a good score. Looking forward, CDP has already announced it is fully aligned with the ISSB S2 standard, demonstrates partial alignment with the TNFD, and it is currently reviewing alignment with ESRS and SEC Climate Disclosure Rule.

At the ChangeNOW summit in Paris, where the CDP Awards Europe took place last week, Sherry Madera, the CEO of CDP highlighted that the same data that companies are being required to report on for compliance reasons is the same data they need to drive action. Data gathered for CDP allows companies to set targets, action plans, and, most importantly, develop incentives across organizations and their supply chains to transform. The CDP reporting season isn’t just about hitting a deadline; it’s the start of an exciting journey for companies to keep pushing forward with their sustainability actions, using their reports as guidance for continuous improvement long after September.

3. Look for a partner to fully showcase all the work you’ve done so far!

CDP questionnaire and scoring might not be as obvious as one might expect. The way companies interact with the reporting platform and phrase their answers might affect the final scoring, even if the company is a leader in sustainability in its sector! To maneuver around the tricky questions and make the most out of the different chapters of the questionnaire, make sure to engage with an expert that knows the CDP methodology through and through.

Our advisors at Position Green every year help companies both just starting to report and the ones that have been kicking up their efforts to get on the prestigious A-list. From training to kick-starting this new or recurring process for you, to reviews of answers and reporting assistance, we can guarantee your business’ sustainability efforts will not go unnoticed in the next CDP report!

See the story of one of our clients’ Volvo Cars, succeeding in their CDP reporting: How Volvo Cars succeeded with their CDP scoring – Position Green

pola nachyla

Pola Nachyla

Senior Associate

Position Green

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