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The Association of Equipment Manufacturers Unveils Its Sustainability Toolkit 

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MILWAUKEE — The Association of Equipment Manufacturers (AEM) launched its equipment industry Sustainability Toolkit, which provides assessments and resources to aid manufacturers and their supply chains to minimize operational environmental impacts. 

The toolkit will help the equipment manufacturing industry with its efforts to align with evolving environmental regulations and support a more sustainable world. Several assessments are available through the toolkit, and all of them provide actionable best practices for minimizing risk while improving sustainability and efficiency. 

The Sustainability Maturity Model Assessment can determine where an organization falls within the four stages of maturity and develop an action plan on how to move forward by collecting a list of attributes of the organization’s business. The first stage is compliance, followed by efficiency, leadership and purpose.  

“The different attributes include what would motivate a company at this stage, what is your organizational motivation, what are the boundaries that are around this stage and who’s accountable for this,” Senior Director Workforce and Industry Initiatives at AEM Julie Davis said. “A company can be in one area for motivation and a different area for tools, actions and accountability. This model gives you an idea of what stage you’re mostly in.”  

Davis said that the assessments are meant to be helpful tools to companies, to provide guidance and resources, and can be used by any that in some ways are involved in manufacturing, no matter the size of the business. 

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“In the compliance stage, things are very reactionary. You’re doing it because it is the law, but when you start to get farther ahead (in the model), you’re not just reacting. There are different guidelines and regulations that may be coming, and you want to get ahead of them,” Davis said. 

The Supply Chain Readiness Assessment addresses the range of Corporate Social Responsibility program elements that companies have implemented or are considering and provides a comparable measure of sustainability readiness and points out areas for improvement.  

The AEM Sustainability Council has found that seven of the United Nation’s 17 Sustainability Development Goals are priorities for AEM and its member companies. In the Supply Chain Readiness Assessment, organizations in the manufacturing industry can see what the actionable steps are to achieving these development goals, including Clean Water and Sanitation, Decent Work and Economic Growth, and Responsible Consumption and Production among others. 

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The Operations Risk Assessment can be used to understand what risks certain suppliers pose to the supply chain, such as long lead times and other common issues, and in some cases forced labor, which can lead to much bigger issues for manufacturers using parts produced in such conditions. It helps a company understand the functionality of their suppliers and can be used as a tool to assess potential suppliers. 

Davis said, “We’re trying to benchmark where the industry is right now, so that five years from now we can go to government organizations and we can say here’s where we were, here’s where we are now, and we have made progress.” 

Access the Sustainability Toolkit here. 

AEM is also the producer of The Utility Expo, which won big at this year’s Trade Show Executive’s Gold 100 Awards & Summit, taking home four Grand Awards and the No. 1 ranking on the Gold 100 list by net square feet. 

Reach Julie Davis at (414) 429-6210 or 

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