Client: Bouygues E&S
Location: UK


Bouygues Energies & Services (Bouygues E&S) have been a partner of The SMFI since 2015 and have achieved the Platinum Award for the second year running, the highest award available. Dave Farebrother, Head of Environment and Sustainability at Bouygues E&S said, “The SFMI Index highlights our own performance and provides a benchmark against our peers. There is always a desire amongst our leadership team to keep doing better. Achieving and retaining Platinum is now a goal of the company.”

Applying sustainability to all aspects of the business, including contracts, helps integrate and build new practices which utilise and promote the positive outcomes achieved. Incorporating this into bid creation establishes a foundation of sustainability which can be developed and refined as the company continues to grow. Many companies offer sustainability as a paid-for extra, however, the SFMI promotes incorporating it as a standard aspect of the bid. As a result, all customers will experience the benefits of embedded sustainability without seeing it as an additional cost.

The challenge

Bouygues E&S originally joined The SFMI as it wanted to develop its corporate philosophy to be aligned with sustainability. It recognised the need, for the sake of both the climate and the company, to change the way things are done by looking at embedding sustainability and increasing transparency and accountability throughout the organisation.

Sustainability is a unique selling point and often helps to distinguish responsible FM companies from their competitors. Bouygues E&S recognises the overall need for a holistic sustainability approach whilst acknowledging the positive impact it has on its reputation among all stakeholders.

Bouygues E&S has always seen the winning of contracts to be almost solely decided by price and therefore greatly affected by purchasing power. However, it has identified and experienced the benefits of incorporating sustainability benefits into contracts as a standard. Clients tend to adopt a more holistic view and Bouygues E&S are now in a position to demonstrate and deliver the ‘whole package’; this means providing a service alongside accountability, transparency and a company-wide responsible approach.

This development in attitude and direction has led to new projects which differentiate Bouygues E&S from its competitors. A prime example of this is the delivery of its free desktop environmental impact assessments. They are the first of their kind in the industry and have led to increased added value for contract bids. This has proven to be a strategic tool for winning business. Clients are increasingly recognising the value and overall benefit of this over price.

The solution

FM Providers take part annually in the SFMI.  They undergo an annual responsible business assessment which quantifies their ESG performance, identifies performance gaps, benchmarks them against industry peers and acts as an annual sustainability training programme with a wide variety of employees across the business.

The SFMI assessment, collaboration forums, webinars and research projects aim to:

  • Deliver a sustainability roadmap
  • Upskill the FM sector
  • Communicate the challenges and solutions of sustainability in FM
  • Celebrate the success and excellence in the sector

By partnering with the SMFI, Bouygues E&S has been able to benchmark itself directly to competitors and measure best practices. This has encouraged continuous improvement and highlights market trends which should be taken into consideration when planning a sustainability strategy.

The results

With the influence of the SFMI, Bouygues E&S strategically connects ideas from different areas and levels of the business to drive sustainability. It has created a crossflow of information which creates a more centralised system rather than purely isolated activities. As result, Bouygues E&S has been able to bring together three previously separate sustainability committees into one panel. Combining the committees helped to target and focus on different areas simultaneously. This highlights the increased collaboration and focus of the company.

Bouygues E&S sees The SFMI as a great auditing tool as the company can evaluate its own sustainability performance year on year. The audit works as a gap analysis and provides an outside perspective and evaluation of their performance. The feedback is seen as reputable and substantiated and can be utilised to help develop and refine its approaches and targets.

By meticulously focusing on best practices of environmental, social and governance, Bouygues E&S has become more involved in activities such as employee development and stakeholder engagement. With the encouragement of the SFMI, Bouygues E&S has developed a learning and development programme for knowledge sharing, including a mandatory carbon module for all staff to drive sustainability within the business. This has been recognised through the assessment which first saw an increase in the stakeholder engagement score in 2020; the company achieved the highest possible score for this criterion in that year.

Bouygues E&S collaborates with universities to promote diversity in the workplace and enables innovation in shared practice. This addresses two of the SMFI criteria: Diversity and Collaboration. The 23 criteria of The SMFI highlight the wider scope of sustainability. The framework provides a clear and robust breakdown of these criteria and how they relate to the FM industry.

Bouygues E&S’ achievement of the Platinum Award in The SFMI assessments has led to increased recognition and enhanced reputation. The company has found that its positive sustainability status has had a positive impact on its recruitment of high-calibre employees. Graduates joining the company highlight sustainability as a key area of interest and feel encouraged that Bouygues E&S aligns with this.

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