World Environment Day 2021 – Reimagine, recreate, restore

SCORE Training re-imagined and equipped to help SMEs build back greener

The COVID-19 crisis has forced all companies to re-imagine their ways of doing business in order to ensure the continuity of their activities and the health of their employees. SCORE Training has not been spared the changes in the working environment and has also had to re-imagine the way it delivers its training modules. On this World Environment Day, it is an opportunity to re-think the recovery, restore good working conditions and more importantly create better conditions for SMEs and the environment in which they operate.

Article | 31 May 2021

The virtualisation of SCORE Training

The health measures that were put in place in response to the COVID-19 pandemic forced SCORE Training to move from face-to-face to online. The virtualisation of SCORE Training was unprecedented and allowed the delivery of the training to continue during the crisis, and also positively reduced of the environmental impact of the project. Most notably, in Bolivia and Colombia, the carbon footprint of the project was significantly reduced.

SCORE Training delivered online

In the face of the unprecedented situation imposed by the pandemic, the SCORE Training offer had to be redefined. Not only were two modules created specifically to address the challenges of COVID-19: one on Occupational Health and Safety and one on Business Continuity Planning, but customised counselling was also provided to SMEs according to the individual challenges that they faced. For example, in Peru, although there was no demand from SMEs for the Resource Efficiency module, many environmental measures were integrated into Business Improvement Plans to save water and energy, reduce waste and promote recycling.

In order to provide SMEs with the best possible advice on how to deal with the COVID-19 crisis, it was also important to strengthen the knowledge and skills of SCORE trainers. In Myanmar, the focus was on COVID-19 protection measures at the heart of the crisis, but soon sessions were planned to strengthen the skills of trainers in promoting resource efficiency, a key element to ensure recovery. The SCORE Training module "Resource Efficiency" teaches how to increase productivity through more environmentally friendly production processes and methods, focusing on waste reduction and energy saving.

Furniture manufacturer Lam Viet recycles scrap wood to make kitchen cutting boards (ILO Vietnam)

SMEs forced to maximise production

The negative effects of the COVID-19 pandemic and the accompanying crisis have positively forced many SMEs to rethink their production, their management of raw materials and machinery and sometimes their product range to ensure the continuity of their activities. In order to survive, many SMEs decided to take SCORE Training and in particular to follow the new module "COVID-19 Business Continuity Planning" which offers advice on process optimisation. An Indonesian company producing cosmetics, despite a sharp drop in demand for most of its products, was able to reorient its production to sanitary products in high demand such as soap and disinfectants.

All companies had to innovate to cope with, and survive COVID-19 and were sometimes able to achieve good results in terms of waste reduction while focusing on increasing productivity. A textile company in China, in order to both ensure business continuity and protect its employees, found a way to reuse unused textile that was destined to end up as waste to make masks for all employees. This allowed the company to reduce waste in the short term and to think about the potential of unused raw materials in the long term.

SCORE Training helps SMEs, through its modules, to implement better waste management but also helps certain SMEs that contribute to waste management in the communities in which they are located to have a more significant impact. For example, in Bolivia, a company dedicated to the collection and management of municipal waste in the city of La Paz participated in the SCORE online training and was able to improve the efficiency of its practices and processes.

SCORE Training module ready to support recovery

After suffering the negative effects of the COVID-19 pandemic and implementing all the necessary measures to protect employees and customers, and measures to protect their activities from the economic effects of the crisis, all companies are now looking to the future and looking towards the recovery. But everyone agrees that going back to the way things were before is not an option, and being prepared for future crises is now essential. Whether health or environmental, no company can ignore the dramatic threats they face. Up until now, surviving and restoring business has been essential , but it is now time for SMEs to reconceptualise ways of doing business to better anticipate and prepare for future challenges.

SCORE Training is well placed to support SMEs equipping themselves with the best knowledge, practices and tools, to implement improvements to better face future challenges, not only by improving productivity and working conditions but also by being more environmentally friendly and sustainable. The Resource Efficiency training module helps companies identify opportunities for improvement in terms of energy saving and maximising use of resources.

 Resource Efficiency - Cutting waste to improve productivity

Productivity is the efficient and effective use of resources such as labour, machines, energy, materials, etc. in the production and distribution of goods and services that meet customers’ needs and requirements. This module provides tools for workers and managers to measure and improve productivity with a particular focus on strategies to improve energy and material productivity, leading to more environmental sustainability

At every level of business and policy, it is essential to restore and recreate a more solid and sustainable business environment, but above all to reimagine ways of working in order to prepare for future crises. The environmental crisis is looming large… Let us better anticipate the inevitable challenges we are facing and act proactively by equipping SMEs with the tools that will empower them and their workers to forge a better future, together.

*The SCORE Programme is currently preparing and multiplying partnerships in China and Indonesia to help companies produce cleaner, reduce waste and contribute to the green economy. The SCORE Training Resource Efficiency module is available in all countries where SCORE Training operates. If you are interested in SCORE Training module "Resource efficiency - Cutting waste to improve productivity" find out where we are and who to contact to have more information.