Feb 27 2024

The Benefits of Using ESRS Reporting Software for Your Organization



The Benefits of Using ESRS Reporting Software for Your Organization

Sustainability has become a defining issue of our time. With the world facing urgent challenges like climate change, biodiversity loss, and social inequality, stakeholders across the board – from investors and regulators to customers and employees – are demanding greater transparency and accountability from companies on their environmental, social, and governance (ESG) performance.
In response to this growing pressure, the European Union has introduced a new set of sustainability reporting standards, known as the European Sustainability Reporting Standards (ESRS). These standards, which will come into effect in stages starting from 2024, represent a major step forward in the harmonization and digitalization of corporate sustainability disclosures in the EU.
Under the ESRS, nearly 50,000 large companies and listed SMEs will be required to report detailed information on a wide range of ESG topics, using a double materiality perspective that considers both the impact of the company on sustainability issues and the financial risks and opportunities arising from those issues. Companies will also need to prepare their reports in a standardized digital format, using the European Single Electronic Format (ESEF) and a set of predefined templates and taxonomies.
For many organizations, complying with the ESRS will require significant changes to their reporting processes, data management systems, and governance structures. Collecting, calculating, and disclosing ESG data across complex global operations and value chains is no small feat, and doing so in a way that meets the rigorous standards of the ESRS can be a daunting challenge.
This is where ESRS reporting software comes in. These specialized tools are designed to help companies streamline and automate their ESRS reporting, from data collection and validation to calculation and mapping to final disclosure and assurance. By leveraging the power of technology and best practices, ESRS reporting software can help organizations navigate the complexity of the new standards with greater efficiency, accuracy, and confidence.
But the benefits of using ESRS reporting software go far beyond just compliance. These tools can also deliver significant business value by enabling companies to:

Save time and resources
One of the biggest advantages of ESRS reporting software is its ability to automate and streamline many of the manual and time-consuming tasks involved in sustainability reporting. By integrating with existing ERP, HR, and other business systems, these tools can pull in relevant ESG data automatically, eliminating the need for manual data entry and reconciliation. They can also perform complex calculations and transformations on that data, such as converting energy consumption into greenhouse gas emissions or mapping diversity metrics to the relevant ESRS disclosures.

What's more, ESRS reporting software can help companies manage the entire reporting process from end to end, with features like customizable workflows, data validation checks, version control, and audit trails. This can significantly reduce the time and effort required to prepare and review sustainability reports, freeing up resources to focus on more strategic activities like data analysis, stakeholder engagement, and performance improvement.
For example, one global manufacturing company was able to reduce the time spent on data collection and validation for its sustainability report by 60% after implementing an ESRS reporting software solution. By automating data integrations and calculations, the company was able to eliminate manual errors and inconsistencies, while also providing greater transparency and traceability for its reported ESG metrics.

Improve data quality and reliability
Another key benefit of ESRS reporting software is its ability to enhance the quality, consistency, and reliability of ESG data. With the ESRS introducing new requirements for the assurance of sustainability disclosures, companies will need to be able to demonstrate the accuracy and integrity of their reported information to both internal and external auditors.

ESRS reporting software can support this by providing a centralized platform for data management and governance, with features like data validation rules, error checks, and approval workflows. By enforcing consistent data standards and processes across the organization, these tools can help reduce the risk of errors, omissions, or inconsistencies that could undermine the credibility of the sustainability report.
Moreover, by integrating with external data sources like government databases, industry benchmarks, or supplier systems, ESRS reporting software can help companies enhance the completeness and comparability of their ESG data. This is particularly important for Scope 3 emissions and other value chain metrics, which can be difficult to measure and verify using internal data alone.
For instance, a leading European bank was able to improve the accuracy and auditability of its financed emissions data by 85% after implementing an ESRS reporting software tool that integrated with its loan and investment systems. By automating the data collection and calculation process, the bank was able to reduce manual errors and provide a clear audit trail for its reported emissions, enhancing the credibility of its sustainability disclosures to investors and regulators.

Enable better decision-making and performance management
Beyond just compliance and reporting, ESRS reporting software can also help companies leverage their ESG data for better decision-making and performance management. By providing a comprehensive and real-time view of sustainability metrics across the organization, these tools can help identify areas of risk or opportunity, track progress against targets, and benchmark performance against industry peers.

Many ESRS reporting software solutions come with built-in analytics and visualization capabilities, such as interactive dashboards, trend analysis, and scenario modeling. These features can help sustainability teams and business leaders explore their ESG data in more depth, uncovering insights and patterns that may not be immediately apparent from raw data tables or static reports.
For example, a global consumer goods company used its ESRS reporting software to identify a significant opportunity to reduce packaging waste in its supply chain. By analyzing data on material usage and disposal across different product lines and regions, the company was able to pinpoint specific areas where it could redesign packaging for greater recyclability or reuse, leading to both cost savings and environmental benefits.
In another case, a European utility company used its ESRS reporting software to set and track progress against science-based targets for carbon reduction. By modeling different scenarios based on factors like energy mix, grid infrastructure, and customer demand, the company was able to develop a robust decarbonization roadmap and make data-driven decisions about investments in renewable energy and energy efficiency.

Strengthen stakeholder trust and reputation
Perhaps most importantly, ESRS reporting software can help companies build and maintain trust with their key stakeholders by providing transparent, consistent, and assured sustainability disclosures. With the ESRS introducing new requirements for the digital tagging and submission of sustainability reports, investors and other stakeholders will be able to access and analyze ESG data more easily than ever before.

By using ESRS reporting software to automate the digital reporting process and ensure compliance with the ESEF taxonomy and other technical standards, companies can demonstrate their commitment to transparency and accountability. They can also use the software to generate visually engaging and interactive reports that help stakeholders understand and engage with their ESG performance in a more meaningful way.
Moreover, by providing a clear and auditable record of their sustainability data and processes, companies can build greater confidence among investors, customers, and regulators in the reliability and credibility of their disclosures. This can help strengthen their reputation as a sustainable and responsible business, potentially leading to benefits like improved access to capital, enhanced customer loyalty, and reduced regulatory risk.
For example, a leading European telecommunications company was able to improve its CDP Climate Change score from a B to an A- after implementing an ESRS reporting software solution that enabled more comprehensive and assured disclosure of its carbon emissions and climate risks. By providing investors with higher-quality and more transparent ESG data, the company was able to attract new sustainability-focused investors and reduce its cost of capital.

Drive innovation and transformation
Finally, ESRS reporting software can be a powerful catalyst for driving innovation and transformation in sustainability performance. By providing a robust and flexible platform for managing ESG data and processes, these tools can help companies experiment with new approaches, technologies, and business models that create value for both the business and society.

For instance, a global food and beverage company used its ESRS reporting software to launch a new sustainable agriculture program aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions and improving farmer livelihoods in its supply chain. By collecting and analyzing data on farm-level practices and impacts, the company was able to identify opportunities to provide targeted training, financing, and other support to help farmers adopt more sustainable and resilient practices, leading to both environmental and social benefits.
In another example, a European fashion retailer used its ESRS reporting software to develop a new circularity strategy for its products and packaging. By tracking data on material flows, customer use patterns, and end-of-life disposal, the company was able to redesign its products for greater durability, repairability, and recyclability, as well as develop new business models like clothing rental and take-back schemes. This helped the company reduce waste and emissions while also creating new sources of revenue and customer engagement.

Implementing ESRS Reporting Software: Key Considerations

Of course, realizing the full benefits of ESRS reporting software requires more than just purchasing a tool off the shelf. Companies need to carefully consider a range of factors when selecting and implementing these solutions, such as:

Alignment with ESRS requirements and other reporting frameworks: The software should be fully compatible with the latest ESRS standards and taxonomies, as well as any other reporting frameworks or standards the company needs to comply with (e.g. GRI, SASB, TCFD).

Integration with existing systems and data sources: The software should be able to seamlessly integrate with the company's existing IT landscape, including ERP, HR, and sustainability-specific systems, to enable automated data collection and exchange.

Flexibility and scalability: The software should be flexible enough to accommodate the company's unique data models, workflows, and reporting needs, while also being scalable to support future growth and changes in requirements.

Ease of use and adoption: The software should be intuitive and user-friendly for both technical and non-technical users, with clear documentation, training, and support resources to ensure successful adoption and use.

Security and compliance: The software should have robust security controls and compliance features to protect sensitive ESG data and meet relevant data privacy and protection regulations.

Vendor track record and ecosystem: The software vendor should have a proven track record of successful implementations and satisfied customers, as well as a strong ecosystem of partners and complementary solutions to support the company's broader sustainability goals.

Moreover, implementing ESRS reporting software is not just a technical exercise, but also a change management and capability-building effort. Companies need to engage stakeholders across the organization to build awareness, gather input, and drive adoption of the new tools and processes. They also need to invest in training and upskilling their teams to ensure they have the necessary knowledge and skills to effectively use and benefit from the software.
Looking Ahead

As the ESRS and other sustainability reporting requirements continue to evolve and mature, so too will the landscape of ESRS reporting software. We can expect to see ongoing innovation and consolidation in this space, with vendors developing new features and capabilities to help companies keep pace with the latest standards and best practices.
Some key trends and developments to watch include:

Greater integration and interoperability: As ESG data becomes more integrated into core business processes and decision-making, we can expect to see greater convergence between ESRS reporting software and other enterprise systems like ERP, financial planning, and risk management.
Advanced analytics and AI: With the growing volume and complexity of ESG data, companies will increasingly leverage advanced analytics and artificial intelligence techniques to extract insights, identify patterns and anomalies, and predict future performance.
Blockchain and other emerging technologies: Blockchain and other distributed ledger technologies have the potential to revolutionize ESG data management and verification, enabling secure, transparent, and tamper-proof recording and exchange of sustainability information across complex value chains.
Expansion beyond reporting: As companies mature in their sustainability reporting practices, they will increasingly look to use their ESG data and insights to drive broader business transformation and value creation, from product innovation and supply chain optimization to stakeholder engagement and reputation management.

Ultimately, the future of ESRS reporting software will be shaped by the evolving needs and expectations of companies, investors, regulators, and society at large. As the imperative for sustainable business practices becomes ever more urgent and non-negotiable, these tools will play an increasingly critical role in enabling transparency, accountability, and performance improvement.
For companies that embrace this opportunity and invest in the right tools and capabilities, the benefits can be significant – not only in terms of compliance and risk management, but also in terms of innovation, competitiveness, and long-term value creation. By harnessing the power of ESG data and technology, these leaders will be well-positioned to thrive in the new era of sustainability and help shape a more resilient, equitable, and sustainable future for all.


The introduction of the ESRS marks a new chapter in the evolution of corporate sustainability reporting – one that will require significant changes and investments from companies across the EU and beyond. To navigate this complex and rapidly-evolving landscape, organizations will need to rethink their approaches to ESG data management, governance, and disclosure, and embrace new technologies and best practices that can help them keep pace with the latest standards and stakeholder expectations.

ESRS reporting software can be a powerful enabler of this transformation, offering a range of benefits that go beyond just compliance and reporting. By automating and streamlining key processes, improving data quality and reliability, enabling better decision-making and performance management, strengthening stakeholder trust and reputation, and driving innovation and transformation, these tools can help companies unlock the full value of their sustainability efforts and position themselves for success in the low-carbon, resource-efficient economy of the future.

Of course, realizing these benefits will require more than just technology alone. It will require visionary leadership, cross-functional collaboration, and a willingness to challenge the status quo and embrace new ways of thinking and working. It will require ongoing engagement and dialogue with stakeholders to understand their needs and expectations, and a commitment to continuous improvement and learning.

But for those companies that are willing to make the investment and put in the hard work, the rewards can be immense. By providing high-quality, decision-useful ESG information to the market, they can help accelerate the flow of capital towards sustainable business models and solutions, and contribute to the urgent global effort to build a more just, resilient, and thriving world for all.

As a sustainability professional and advocate, I am excited by the potential of ESRS reporting software to enable and catalyze this transformation. While the road ahead may be challenging and uncertain, I am confident that with the right tools, partnerships, and mindset, we can rise to the occasion and create a future in which business and society can prosper in harmony with each other and the planet.

So if you're a company looking to get started on your ESRS reporting journey, or take your existing practices to the next level, I encourage you to explore the many benefits that ESRS reporting software can offer. By investing in these tools and capabilities, you can not only meet the demands of the new standards, but also unleash the full potential of your sustainability efforts to create value for your business, your stakeholders, and the world at large.

The time to act is now, and the stakes have never been higher. With the help of ESRS reporting software and other innovations in sustainability data and technology, let us seize this moment to accelerate the transition to a net-zero, nature-positive, and socially-inclusive economy – one that works for people and planet alike. The future is ours to shape, and it starts with the decisions we make today.

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We help organizations automate their ESG metric measurements, tracking and reporting across company as well as their supply chain. Our platform solves for all corporate sustainability reporting and carbon accounting needs.

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