Welcome to our new blog, where you will find information on how to address sustainability within your organisation, testimonials on the software, and the latest Staarsoft® software updates!
What is Staarsoft® Software?
Staarsoft® software is the digital version of the Sustainability Toolkit, which provides guidance to plan, implement, manage and report on a comprehensive sustainability program for organizations of all sizes and sectors. The Toolkit approach was designed by Tavares Group Consulting over 6 years ago to provide practical guidance to organizations looking to implement sustainability. It answers the question, “Where do we start?” for organizations seeking to become more sustainable, and “Where do we go next?” for those who have already implemented some sustainability initiatives.
Our firm’s management system and corporate social responsibility and sustainability experience combined with ongoing supply chain research serve as an excellent foundation for the Toolkit approach, which has been extensively tested by organizations across several sectors.
What makes Staarsoft® unique?
The Toolkit approach complements the processes and frameworks an organisation already has in place, clearly identifies sustainability criteria and metrics, and pinpoints where to go next. From there, the sky is the limit for your sustainability program’s progress. It keeps a tangible outline to refer to when things veer off course, and provides specific guidance on how to implement metrics, when to benchmark, and provide overall best practices.
We asked our security and technology partner, Arianit Uka, StackSoft Inc. CEO & Founder, to provide expert insight on the User Interface experience and security:
“Staarsoft® makes it very easy for your organization to set sustainability goals and get visual reports to see how those goals are being met. Throughout the entire process, Staarsoft® provides excellent documentation that makes using the software a breeze. We love that the software is making the world a better place. Sustainability is an important and difficult problem and Staarsoft® is an excellent and easy-to-use framework that helps your organization through each step to a more sustainable future.”
In terms of security, Uka says, “Staarsoft® data is securely stored on Google Cloud in the Canadian data centre. Google Cloud follows the best security practices in the industry and is a well-known and trusted cloud provider. The data stored on Staarsoft ® is encrypted and backed up every day. We always apply security updates as soon as possible and are committed to keeping our infrastructure up to date.”
In its original form, the Toolkit was made up of two components: a guidance document outlining our 13-step approach to sustainability integration, and an excel-based Action Plan & Assessment Tool that provides the framework for organizations to properly manage and document their sustainability efforts. Imagine the challenge for a local company to track an entire sustainability program on spreadsheets, let alone for a multi-site, international organisation! In 2016, we partnered with local digital services agency, rTraction, to translate the Toolkit’s process-based approach into a sustainability planning, assessment, and reporting software that helps organizations address their material sustainability issues.
“It is rewarding to finally be able to automate the Toolkit through the StaarsoftTM software, allowing organisations to manage sustainability more efficiently and anticipate stakeholder needs. Working with a local B Corp firm who understands social responsibility to develop the software not only was a good fit but also helped us to further our sustainability commitment to our community.”
– Sandra Tavares, Principal, Tavares Group Consulting Inc.
“We believe that the future of business is going to be based off of a sustainable business practice foundation — by 2030 we think it will no longer be acceptable to conduct business in a non-sustainable fashion. To that end, organizations using systems like StaarsoftTM will have a jump on competition and help chart the future of business.”
– David Billson, CEO, rTraction
In May 2017, we unveiled StaarsoftTM at the Automotive Industry Action Group’s (AIAG) 2017 Corporate Responsibility Summit. Since that time, we have gathered feedback on the software, and the response to date has been consistently positive! In September 2018, we officially launched StaarsoftTM, and on July 18, 2019, Staarsoft® became an official registered trademark! The Staarsoft®website highlights its features and benefits, and allows visitors to sign up for a demo. In addition, we rebranded our Toolkit social media channel on Twitter, launched the Staarsoft® Showcase page on LinkedIn, and created a LinkedIn group.
Staarsoft® Featured Events
The Toolkit approach and associated Staarsoft® Software has been showcased at many events leading the way in sustainability.
CANECT Environmental Compliance and Due Diligence Training Event — May 2019, Vaughan, Ontario
Sandra Tavares was one of four keynote speakers who shared their insight into Environmental Management System Synergies: Improve Efficiency and Performance. This presentation addressed how environmental management systems (EMS) can incorporate other sustainability requirements, based on the Toolkit approach. Regulators, investors, and senior management increasingly expect an effective EMS. The EMS Synergies course showed “how to build efficiency and effectiveness into your EMS from start to finish by taking advantage of synergies in areas such as risk management, training, data management, communications, records and performance monitoring, document control, and supplier relationships.”
- An event to address CR and sustainability issues across the automotive, heavy industry and technology sectors
- Tavares Group Consulting has a longstanding history with presenting on sustainability and the Toolkit approach at this and previous AIAG events. In 2018, Sandra Tavares and Mary McDonald of The McDonald Consulting Group presented how environmental, health & safety systems, and sustainability initiatives can be integrated into a sustainability program. The presentation provided strategies for integrating EHS and sustainability systems through a process-based approach that meets all requirements
Canadian Society of Safety Engineering (CSSE) Professional Development Conference (PDC) & Exhibition — September 2018, Niagara Falls, Ontario
- Speakers and workshops that engage participants on a variety of health and safety topics — an important Operating Practices metric identified by the Staarsoft® sustainability software
- CSSE also used the Toolkit as a basis for their approach to integrating sustainability into a health and safety program
2018 Conservation Conference, Wildlife Habitat Council (WHC) — November 2018, Baltimore, Maryland
- Celebrating 30 years in operation, the WHC is a non-profit designed to help, preserve and enhance biodiversity on corporate land
- An event that emphasises the importance of corporate conservation, employee engagement and community relations for successful wildlife habitat management
- Staarsoft® sustainability software identifies Community issues, such as those presented, as one of four essential components of a successful sustainability program
- Industry innovators, scientists, activists and researchers exchange ideas in order to inspire and motivate best practices, solutions, and local and global leadership within the fashion industry in North America
- UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) were woven into the design of 2018 WEAR panel discussions, keynote topics, and workshops
- Staarsoft® was showcased to demonstrate how retailers, brands and their supply chains can identify and achieve these goals
- In 2016, Sandra Tavares, with representatives from H&M and TESTEX, discussed how management systems, certifications, and other sustainability strategies can promote transparency within the supply chain
- The TGC team hosted two LABS on sustainability integration using the step-by-step Toolkit approach
- Workshops provided participants with hands-on experience identifying and prioritizing “material” sustainability issues, and learned how to address and proactively manage sustainability within their own organisations and supply chains
What’s on the horizon for Staarsoft®?
Stay tuned in 2020! You will find our presence in various sectors, and we will be presenting on the Toolkit approach and showcasing the Staarsoft® software at several conferences.
Additional Case Studies
- Western Science: Stakeholder Engagement Case Study, Sustainable Project Guideline, and Western Hospitality internal sustainability reporting
- Goodwill Ontario Great Lakes (GOGL) — Not-for-profit: Sustainability Gap Analysis including Risk and Materiality Assessment
- Bruce Power — Nuclear Power Generation: Sustainability Toolkit-based 1st Sustainability Report and Staarsoft® software management and consolidation of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Indigenous Relations Program