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Environmental damage is one of the greatest challenges the world faces. And as a founding member of the Legal Sustainability Alliance and accredited to ISO14001, we are keen to play our part.

We are committed to achieving net zero status by 2030, twenty years before the Government’s proposed 2050 deadline.
And we will publish our plans for how to achieve this during 2022.

The environment is high on a lot of people’s agendas. However as we all well know, it is action, not words, which are required to make a difference. Our management team are keen to lead by example, and to reach beyond our obligations and so set a benchmark for others to follow. So:

  • We are reducing our paper usage substantially, already operating paper-lite throughout the firm and paperless in some departments, with targets to become virtually paperless across the board by 2025.
  • We have joined the Sustainable Recruitment Alliance to reduce the environmental impact on early talent recruitment, as described by Matt later.
  • We recycle all possible materials.
  • We encourage our teams to minimise travel, and have put in place the technology to make this possible.
  • We encourage and incentivise use of bikes to work, having doubled the amount available under the ‘Cycle to Work’ scheme to enable the purchase of electric bikes if desired.
  • We are working with our landlords to promote electric charging points in our car parks.
  • We have issued metal business cards which digitally transfer contact details to a recipient’s phone, reducing paper business card wastage. We also use QR codes across all literature to reduce paper usage, and enable updates to be made to information without reprinting.
  • And we are ensuring that we learn from the recent past – a reduction in printing, travel, commuting and electricity use as a result of home working during the pandemic – to create an ongoing flexible working pattern which maintains and secures this into the future.

Objectives

Our objectives and commitments

To publish our carbon reduction plan by autumn 2022.

 

To maintain paper usage at 50% of historic levels.

 

To achieve net zero status by 2030.

 

To keep travel at under 50% of historic levels, and reduce the following year by a further 10%.

Headlines

CO2 emissions

In 2021, we cut CO2 emissions as a result of paper usage by 54% compared to 2019.

Travel

Travel in 2021 was 15% of historic levels.

Recycling

As a result of recycling, in 2021 we saved 415 trees, 56 m3 of landfill, 102,585 kwH, 11,714kg CO2, and 781,600 litres of water.

Cycle to work

In 2021, we doubled our contribution to the Cycle to Work Scheme to enable people to choose electric bikes

Energy usage

Due to the energy mix we have chosen, CO2 emissions as a result of our power usage is zero, against the UK average equivalent of 9,000 kg CO2.

Spotlight: In conversation with...

Matthew Cormack, Training Principal: Sustainable and award-winning approach to recruitment of early talent

In the summer of 2021, Ward Hadaway joined the Sustainable Recruitment Alliance.

The Alliance was set up to encourage organisations to take a more eco-friendly approach to early talent recruitment. With over half a million graduate vacancies and apprenticeships annually, the impact across the industry promises to be significant.

As an early signatory of the pledge and one of a handful of law firms, we committed to review, reduce and report on its trainee and apprentice recruitment processes and as a result identify more sustainable alternatives.

Like everyone else, we have for many years handed out post-it notes, highlighter pens, stress balls and chargers at careers fairs. Our teams have travelled the country to attract the best talent to our firm. Whilst our aspirations remain the same, the way we do it is changing.

As part of our pledge to the Sustainable Recruitment Alliance, we commit to reduce our environmental impact and carbon footprint by not producing any ‘freebies’, and to cut our travel by taking advantage of the move to digital alternatives by many of the universities.

By doing so, we are leading by example in our sector, adding our voice to an impressive list of signatories including Clifford Chance, Aviva, Vodafone and Co-op who are encouraging businesses to reduce the environmental impact of their early talent recruitment.

As a result of which we were delighted to recognised with a national award. We walked away with the Sustainability in Early Talent Recruitment Award 2022, at the targetjobs Awards, judged by industry professionals, seeing off the likes of PwC, L’Oréal and Johnson Matthey Plc.

We look forward to seeing future applicants go through our new process, which we are confident strikes the right balance between sustainability and giving candidates a great experience and insight into Ward Hadaway and its culture. We will continue to ask candidates for feedback on our processes, to ensure that we are offering the best possible experience of the firm.

This is just one of many environmental initiatives that Ward Hadaway is undertaking. The next generation of lawyers strongly influence our responsible business strategy, so it is essential that our early talent recruitment efforts are conducted in the most environmentally friendly fashion possible.

Find out more about our responsible business initiatives

Our Communities

Giving back to the communities in which we operate has always been, and will continue to be, a key priority for Ward Hadaway.

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Our People

Our people are our most important asset. We have spent many years building a business and a team to be extremely proud of.

Find out more