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Bespoke sustainability and carbon management consultancy for SMEs in Nottingham

NTU students take part in student consultancy and deliver innovative sustainable solutions to local businesses.

Roudwan Gibril
Roudwan Gibril talks about the Sustainability in Enterprise project at NBS
European Regional Development Fund logo

Are you a small and medium-sized enterprise (SME) based in Nottingham? Do you want to be a cleaner, greener business, but you’re not sure where to begin? Or perhaps you’ve already started your sustainability journey, but you want to know what else you could do?

Read on to find out how we can offer your business bespoke sustainability and carbon management consultancy, delivered by a team of Student Consultants in their final year undergraduate course.

A comprehensive package of support including sustainability consultancy is available for SMEs in Greater Nottingham through the 'Sustainability in Enterprise' project. It helps SMEs to fully understand their current carbon emissions and identify effective carbon reduction measures, supporting them on their journey to Net Zero.

How can sustainability consultancy from Nottingham Business School support SMEs?

Remote support and virtual workshops

The Nottingham Business School (NBS) strand of the Sustainability in Enterprise (SiE) project supports SMEs through bespoke sustainability and carbon management consultancy delivered by a team of student consultants studying in their final year undergraduate courses.

Students from a broad range of courses such as Accountancy and Finance, Economics, Marketing and Management will work in teams supported by academics with expertise in sustainability and carbon management.

As a result of carbon management consultancy project, the student recommendations can help save the 2021-22 cohort of businesses approximately 32 tCO2e of carbon emissions and over £21,000 in cost savings. As many of the SMEs were micro-businesses, this represents a significant impact in the current climate and can help them on a journey towards Net Zero.

This consultancy support will help SMEs to:

  • Save costs and protect the environment by reducing the consumption of resources
  • Mitigate the risks to business from current or future carbon management/ sustainability policy or legislation
  • Help meet clients' expectations and carbon reduction targets

Carbon impact assessment

The team will undertake the following to produce a carbon impact assessment for your business:

  • Business needs assessment/ project brief
  • SME desk research including review of current environmental policy and strategy
  • Identification of risks and opportunities associated with carbon management
  • Setting the scopes and operational boundary (the area of the business to be audited)
  • Audit of resource consumption data for carbon footprinting, for example, energy (electricity, gas), fuel consumption, water, waste etc.
  • Assessment of carbon footprint and associated costs of consumption.

The final product is a carbon footprint assessment complete with recommendations to reduce carbon emissions, associated cost savings and set carbon reduction targets. The project findings will be presented to the business by means of a poster presentation.

Leonard Design Architects: student consultancy

Leonard design architects logo on the wall

Leonard Design Architects is an award-winning architectural practice with a specialist focus on commercial architectural design and consultancy. Through NTU’s Sustainability in Enterprise project, the practice has been working closely with a team of student consultants supported by academics with expertise in sustainability and carbon management, to calculate their carbon impact and put an action plan in place to reduce emissions.

We spoke to Leonard Design’s Facilities Manager, Susan Hayes to find out how they and the practice have benefited from the student consultancy. “The student consultants came into the office and were really engaged in learning about our business. They asked loads of questions and gave me guidance on the data they needed from us to assess our carbon footprint.”

She adds: “How the student consultants from NBS presented their findings to us was clear and impactful. The presentation was excellent. We invited them in to present to the whole Leonard Design team and now everyone is really engaged with what we’ve got to do and why. Seeing our energy consumption visually has kickstarted us into another level of action”

HR Manager, Estelle Morris also says: “Working with NBS’s student consultants has been really educational because they’ve given us clear recommendations to reduce our energy use. Not everyone understands the jargon, but the student consultants’ presentation made it really easy to understand. Their presentation was really good. It brought our first carbon footprint to life.”

Estelle explains “The Sustainability in Enterprise project makes you think. It’s a good insight into sustainability especially when it isn’t your day job. It gives you an insight into how you can improve as a business, and at home. We wouldn’t have known where to start without the time and expertise we were given by Nottingham Business School’s student consultants and their academic tutors”.

Overall, students’ proposed recommendations could help the company save 8.8 tCO2e of carbon emissions a year, reducing Leonard Design’s carbon footprint by almost 50%.
Read the full case study here.

Key members of the project and academic team

SiE Staff

NBS SiE Project Strand Lead: Dr Muhammad Mazhar

Academic team: Dr Justin UdieDr Ramez Kian, Al Dharmasasmita

NBS Sustainability Consultancy Projects Coordinator: Helen Taylor

How to access the support available

Find out more about the broad range of support that NTU is providing to local businesses through the Sustainability in Enterprise project.

You can also contact us via: