Draper has been a family-run firm for four generations. So we understand that handing on a sustainable inheritance is vitally important.
That’s why we take our environmental and corporate social responsibilities very seriously. We wanted to share some of the ways we try to do the right thing in all areas of the business. You can see our full report here and read on for an overview.
We build for the future
Simply by being here and going about our business, we naturally affect the environment. However, we strive to minimise our impact – and make a positive difference wherever we can.
Within our physical buildings, we constantly review our ability to improve efficiency and minimise waste.
We employ a dedicated maintenance team at our current head office in Chandlers Ford, Hampshire. A critical part of its remit is to make things better rather than simply keep them running – whether that means making it easier to recycle everything that can be recycled, or replacing energy-hungry systems with more efficient and environmentally-friendly alternatives.
With lighting systems, for example, LEDs use 90% less energy than traditional incandescents. That’s why we are transitioning to LED lighting installations across our warehouse estate with increased use of motion sensors in low footfall areas so lights are only on when they are actually needed. We are working to cut waste and reduce energy consumption in many other ways too and happily go well beyond our legal obligations.
WHY? Because we believe that’s the right thing for the environment as well as being good for business – and that’s a great model for true sustainability
Working towards a carbon neutral, net zero future
Part of our expansion has included a new warehouse facility currently under construction at North Baddesley. This has been built from the ground up with the aim of coping with a changing climate and working towards a carbon neutral, net zero future. You’ll find more details on our plans in our report.
We cut waste
We meet our regulatory requirements in the UK to minimise the disposal of Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE) to landfill and to achieve high levels of collection of WEEE for environmentally sound treatment.
For the past 21 years, we’ve also been certified under the rigorous ISO 14001 environmental management standard. It’s an important part of our efforts to be transparent and accountable as we make progress in environmental efficiency savings. We value our partnership with the environment experts at Valpak as we work together to improve our performance on this.
It’s no secret that using packaging in an environmentally responsible way is a challenge across many industries. We are no exception – but we are working hard to make things better, cutting down on single use plastic and reducing packaging material weight to minimise our environmental impact.
We care about supply chain ethics
Wherever we operate, we will not knowingly do business with suppliers that breach acceptable moral and ethical standards.
That’s why we aim to audit every factory that we work with to ensure they meet our social, moral, ethical and safety requirements. Environmental awareness is very much part of this auditing criteria.
This task is so important that we do not feel it can be delegated to a third party. We therefore employ our own General Manager in Shanghai – a senior Quality Assurance professional who has been with the company for three decades.
Working with him, a team of local staff use their best efforts to make sure that products (and component parts) across our range are not produced using exploited labour and meet quality tests in line with internationally recognised ISO 9001 standards.
We care about colleagues
A family business should be just that: a gathering of people whose relationships are not purely transactional.
It’s not a question of fair pay and good working conditions alone. There should be a real and enduring concern for the wellbeing of each and every colleague in the business – including their mental health.
This was our culture even before the Covid pandemic and its value was proved as we all faced into the disruption of our day-today working patterns and the challenges to mental health which have come in its wake.
Mental health matters
We have made some big improvements when it comes to health and wellbeing. We have regular wellbeing meetings with all teams in the business – both home and abroad – to see how people are and offer any support we can. You can read more about this including our mental health champions in our full report.
Putting people first
We think globally and act locally, taking an active role in local community programmes and charity initiatives as well as being keenly aware of our responsibility to be a good corporate citizen in the wider world too.
Close to home, we recognise that not everyone is fortunate enough to have a roof over their heads. That’s why we donate to Trinity Winchester supporting homeless people in Winchester, and to the Society of St. James who carry out similarly vital work in Southampton. Our support for the latter includes racking to help them organise supplies within their units, as well as a financial contribution.
Now more than ever, many of us recognise the great work undertaken by charities dedicated to health and wellbeing – and the fact that they are struggling to raise funds in the aftermath of coronavirus.
We share that sense of gratitude and are happy to continue with a tradition of support for organisations including the Wessex Cancer Trust and SANDS United FC which helps bereaved dads and other family members cope with the impact of stillbirth and neonatal death through a shared love of sport.
On the sporting theme, we love to see people enjoying the benefits for mental and physical health that flow from involvement in community sports – whether that’s as players, volunteers or supporters. So as a proud Hampshire-based family business, we’re pleased to show support for local team Havant & Waterlooville FC through community partnership initiatives. We’re also proud to be working with the official charity of Southampton FC, the Saints Foundation, who transform lives in and around Southampton.
Think globally, act locally
Combining the local with the global, we are also enthusiastic supporters of Tools for Self Reliance, sharing their vision for a people-centred approach to development assistance. Based just down the road from our HQ, this amazing charity refurbishes used tools before distributing them to communities in Ghana, Malawi, Tanzania, Uganda, Sierra Leone and Zambia where they can once again be put to work and make a real difference to people’s lives. It’s such a rewarding partnership – both for the practical help it delivers to communities in need, and for the contribution it makes to reducing the waste generated by old tools just being thrown away when they could be refurbished and recycled with relative ease.
We also demonstrated our support for the NHS and the selfless efforts undertaken by its frontline workers during the Covid pandemic. In the run up to Christmas 2020, we launched a tool advent calendar, featuring 24 doors of tools to open in the countdown to Christmas. With Christmas being the season of goodwill, we donated £1 from the sale of every calendar to NHS Charities Together in recognition of hardworking NHS staff everywhere. The calendar was so popular that we were able to donate £3,000 to the charity.
We’re proud of all this work, but by no means complacent. In fact, in every aspect of sustainability and ethics, we recognise there is much more work for us to do. But far from being daunted, it’s an obligation we approach with enormous commitment, enthusiasm and optimism for the future
Thank you for reading about our commitment to sustainability and ethics, if you’d like to find out more you can download the full report here. If you have any questions please feel free to get in touch.