MatchZINE – The MarTech Magazine
MatchZINE – The MarTech Magazine
irst off: You're not alone. In the coming years, almost all companies in the German-speaking and European regions will have to deal with the obligation for sustainability reports. As with so many topics, you are quite lost at the beginning. Here, we provide you with a guide as well as a matching for the selection of a CSRD software, so you can save valuable resources in many areas and integrate excellent reporting processes.
The requirements for companies with regard to reporting obligations and compliance will increase in the next few years. The main reason for this is the European Union’s Corporate Sustainability Reporting Directive (CSRD). It is no longer enough to simply have good intentions; companies must be transparent about their sustainability efforts and comply with legal requirements. You probably ended up here for this very reason!?
CSRD reporting tools enable companies to consistently track their CSR activities, collect and analyze data, and create robust reports. Tools and software solutions are not mandatory for most companies in the overall context of a CSR software stack (i.e. all technical solutions for sustainability), but in most cases they are a must.
There are currently well over 50 CSR or ESG software providers in Europe (as of June 2023), 30 of which offer a reporting solution, either standalone or as a feature in a suite.
Easy entry into reporting
Many companies face a huge mountain of challenges with the new obligations. Many providers support the process as part of software onboarding or with efficient consulting. One of the most important factors – especially for CSRD beginners!
Increase efficiency and cost savings
Manual CSR reporting is time-consuming and error-prone. CSRD tools automate processes by aggregating data, performing analysis and generating user-friendly reports. Especially for annually recurring processes, you save immensely time and resources that a CSR manager would better use elsewhere.
By using CSRD tools, you minimize the risk of human error in data collection and processing. The automated processes ensure consistency and accuracy of data, resulting in reliable CSR reports. In some cases, the process starts with individual documents.
Transparency and trust
CSR is already an important factor for image. Transparent, standardized reports give stakeholders, investors and customers constant insight into sustainability efforts. Consistency strengthens trust and increases credibility.
Choosing the right CSRD tool provider is absolutely central to what you do next. After all, you probably won’t change your provider for years to come. Here are some key criteria you should consider when choosing:
Pre-filter References/Use Cases
The current 50 or so relevant providers of CSRD solutions in Europe have different focuses in terms of sectors, company sizes, reporting types etc. Filter out the providers who have already collected reports with similar companies in order to draw on existing know-how for your challenges.
Data and privacy
CSRD tools should be able to manage and analyze large amounts of data. A user-friendly interface and data visualization features facilitate interpretation. And you probably have to pay attention to the GDPR as well, right?
Integration of CSRD tools with existing systems such as Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP), Customer Relationship Management (CRM) or an ESG platform or supply chain software you already use should be an important criterion for the CSR tech stack. Seamless data transfer and synchronisation between different platforms simplifies the workflow and avoids redundant work.
Since CSR reporting comes with specific legal requirements, the tools selected should ensure that the company complies with regulatory requirements. Verify that the software meets the required and optional standards and provides audit trail capabilities.
We ask for additional criteria in our Match Assistant for CSRD reporting tools at the end.
The costs depend very much on, for example, the size of the company and the areas of application – as far as that is clear. The monthly costs for recommended providers start at €190. More complex solutions, especially with an ESG suite, are up to 5,000 € per month – but offer appropriate support in the overall context. For a medium-sized company, the costs for the first 12 months are around €12,000 to €35,000.
In most cases, however, this budget also includes an initial consultation and personal support from the providers for the first report. Tip: For a non-binding budget estimate, simply complete our CSRD provider comparison (see below in the next section).
In answer to the question “Is it worth investing in a reporting tool?” a quick fact: The CSRD requires companies to report in accordance with the 12 European Sustainability Reporting Standards (ESRS), which include about 1,150 data points. And that’s just one argument from a data management perspective.
Using CSRD tools and software solutions is virtually key to efficiently meeting reporting and compliance requirements. It doesn’t matter if you see CSRD as a duty or if you want to seize the opportunities to position yourself better than your competitors through your sustainable measures. Because one thing is pretty certain: sustainability is becoming more and more important on the customer side when making purchasing decisions.
As you can see from this article, we at Matchilla deal intensively with the topic of CSRD reporting tools and screen the provider market successively and carefully for our platform users. Our database contains more than 30 CSRD reporting software providers – with hard and soft factors such as functions, reporting standards, interfaces, support, strategy and industry expertise, pricing etc.
This market overview and our expertise from over 50 CSR and ESG provider matchings (mainly for medium-sized companies and corporations). We would be happy to help you from the CSRD software criteria catalogue to the final provider selection.
Through our matching process, we identify the three most relevant providers of reporting solutions in an individual shortlist that fit you as a company. With an investment of only a few minutes in the information of your individual criteria, we assign you the suitable matches. Best of all, this comparison of CSRD providers is free of charge and without obligation for you.
Do you want to know which CSRD solution fits your requirements best? Simply fill out the Match Assistant.
Match me if you can!