During the Covid-19 crisis, HR services company Acerta and Etion, the forum for corporate social responsibility, conducted a survey among more than 1,000 companies, 187 of which responded. This Flemish survey shows that the Covid-19 crisis is widely viewed as a catalyst for the switch to a circular economy.

Teleworking provides crucial leverage

Almost six in ten business leaders (59.1%) believe that the Covid-19 crisis will act as a catalyst for the switch to a circular economy. Another striking conclusion is that eight in ten entrepreneurs are convinced that sustainability and circularity will become the new normal. Avoiding waste tops the list but telework is also regarded as an important lever for sustainable and circular entrepreneurship. It also plays a key role in terms of HR: six in ten respondents indicate that sustainability and circularity are important topics for applicants.

Biggest challenges

The survey shows that the biggest challenges are making the figures measurable and raising consumer awareness.

Etion’s chief economist Geert Janssens advocates looking at the bigger picture: “Those measuring instruments are gradually becoming commonplace. They are tools to convince competitors/colleagues, suppliers and customers in the sector to go down the same path. Because here, too, we must overcome significant obstacles. Things get interesting when we don’t just look at the cost but also consider the bigger picture in terms of revenue, such as market opportunities and employee motivation.”