Mastering Sustainability: Leveraging MDM for a Greener Future

November 21, 2023
Green Data Solutions

Summary: Sustainability efforts can gain significantly from MDM solutions which can impact, derive, and manage sustainability claims. Syndigo connects the larger supply chain for the product and, with capabilities that support innovations like Digital Product Passport (DPP), provides a unique combination of capabilities for customers to have a supply chain Product MDM with a commerce-enabled PXM in one seamless solution. Most importantly, Syndigo MDM is ideally placed to support ESG initiatives without additional modules, features, or components.

Sustainability is a growing impetus for manufacturers everywhere

Manufacturers have long sought to identify digital solutions to support and improve their sustainability initiatives. While there has always been a drive to manufacture more efficiently and economically, sustainability has become a more critical focus lately. In addition to profitability and scalability, factors like environmental pressures and political pressures (regional initiatives like ESG and the EU drive to implement Digital Product Passports (DPP)) are adding to this thrust. Recent events have brought into question the reliability of long supply chains and forced businesses to explore flexible alternatives. This requires businesses to attain a greater understanding of the capabilities of their current supply chains and how best they can leverage them to improve sustainability without compromising profitability.

What is ESG?

According to Gartner, Environmental, social and governance (ESG) refers to the business practice of evaluating how robust it governs and manages its environmental and social impacts.

Multidomain MDM as an invaluable enabler of sustainability

Multi-domain Master Data Management (MDM) solutions like Syndigo MDM can support corporate sustainability initiatives by providing a centralized, accurate, consistent, and measurable view of key data assets such as location, product, vendor, supplier, manufacturer, and customer information. This helps organizations to better understand and track their environmental impact, improve supply chain transparency, and enhance their ability to report on sustainability metrics.

Here are some more ways in which MDM solutions help with insights into your sustainability capabilities:

Accuracy, Quality and Transparency of Data and Data Silos: MDM helps maintain high data quality by eliminating duplicates, errors, and inconsistencies in master data. Accurate data is crucial for tracking and managing resources, emissions, and sustainability metrics effectively. MDM also breaks down data silos by centralizing master data from various departments and systems. This enables cross-functional collaboration on sustainability initiatives and ensures that everyone in the organization has access to the same, accurate sustainability data. Lastly, MDM systems provide a centralized view of supplier data, including information on their sustainability practices, certifications, and compliance with environmental regulations. This transparency enables manufacturers to make informed decisions about their supply chain partners, selecting those aligned with sustainability goals. Sustainable manufacturing also touches on ethical employment practices including modern slavery statements.

Efficiency, Waste, and Emission Reduction: By maintaining accurate data on materials and resources, MDMs help manufacturers optimize resource utilization, minimize waste, and reduce the environmental footprint of their operations. MDMs also centralize data related to energy consumption and production, and waste generation and disposal. This data is used to identify opportunities for energy efficiency improvements, track energy usage, optimize processes to reduce energy consumption, and help manufacturers identify areas where waste can be reduced or recycled, thereby minimizing the environmental impact. In the context of the production lifecycle  – manufacturing, transport, inventory, even disposal  – MDMs help provide transparency into the carbon footprint of each product, or even other emissions for that matter. Because manufacturers can use historical data and analytics to identify trends, they can set sustainability goals, and measure progress over time leading to continuous improvement of their efforts.

Regulatory Compliance and Reporting: MDM systems can be used to manage data related to a product’s entire lifecycle, including design, production, use, and disposal. This helps manufacturers ensure compliance with environmental regulations by maintaining up-to-date data on regulations and facilitating the tracking and reporting of relevant data. MDM also streamlines the process of collecting, aggregating, and reporting sustainability data required for compliance with reporting standards and reporting to stakeholders, including customers, investors, and regulatory bodies.

Syndigo’s Digital Product Passport as a game changer for sustainability

Syndigo’s vast industry knowledge and experience have helped us provide the necessary tools to help manufacturers with sustainability. Of particular note is the Digital Product Passport. The Digital Product Passport (DPP) is a digital label, tool, or format that aims to provide consumers with transparent and reliable information about a product’s environmental and social impact over its entire lifecycle. The DPP can impact data initiatives by requiring companies to collect and share data on a product’s environmental and social impact, integrating with an MDM solution, sharing data with consumers and other stakeholders, and helping companies comply with sustainability reporting regulations and standards.

It can impact data initiatives in several ways:

  • Data collection: DPPs require companies to collect and share data on a product’s environmental and social impact, such as energy and water usage, carbon emissions, and labor conditions. This can help companies to better understand their sustainability performance and identify areas for improvement.
  • Data management: DPPs can be integrated with a Master Data Management (MDM) solution to provide a centralized repository for data on a product’s environmental and social impact. This can help to ensure that data is accurate, consistent, and up to date.
  • Data sharing: DPPs can be shared with consumers and other stakeholders, such as investors and regulators, providing them with transparent and reliable information about a product’s environmental and social impact.
  • Compliance: DPPs can help companies comply with sustainability reporting regulations and standards, such as the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) and the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board (SASB)

Syndigo MDM offers an agnostic approach to data models, fostering a symbiotic relationship between critical business data and ESG-focused models, ensuring complete transparency across the entire data lifecycle. This discipline, coupled with robust data governance, provides you with all the necessary technology and tools. The crucial factor lies in how effectively you leverage these resources.

Solutions like Syndigo MDM plays a pivotal role in ESG compliance and delivering more sustainable manufacturing by serving as the foundation for accurate, consistent, and comprehensive data management. Empowered with reliable data, manufacturers can make informed decisions, streamline processes, and monitor progress towards sustainability objectives, thereby minimizing their environmental footprint and contributing to a more sustainable future. To learn more about how Syndigo MDM can help you move toward your sustainability goals, contact us.

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