Shaping sustainability

Sustainability is becoming a must for society and companies. The pressure to act is increasing, consumers want sustainable products, investors are demanding transparency and new regulations are inflating. A rethink is required, and wider engagement, a must. Those who see sustainability as an opportunity will stand out from the competition and ensure their long-term existence.

Into the future with sustainability

Companies are facing big, new challenges. Compliance is no longer sufficient. Proactivity, initiative, and transparency are vital – and the right ambition level. We believe that sustainability can and should be anchored into companies’ DNA. We rely on cross-functional teams and are driven by a shared awareness that sustainability is the way forward. We assist companies at every step along their sustainability journeys with the following offering.

Think sustainably.

For sustainability strategy or supply chain analysis, our consulting offering helps master current challenges.

Our consulting offering


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You are not alone!

Implementing sustainability can only be achieved through collaboration  cross-functionally and beyond company boundaries.

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Sustainability Maturity Assessment & Materiality Analysis
Negligence in dealing with sustainability and ESG risks can quickly cause significant risk to the business. In order to be able to develop effective strategies in a competitive environment, a company must know where it stands currently and what it wants to stand for in the future. To this end, we have developed various frameworks to determine the status quo and address the right topics.

Analyse the status quo

Our sustainability maturity assessment is the starting point for any sustainability journey. We look at ongoing activities and the extent to which sustainability is already embedded in a company’s organisational design. Is sustainability part of the corporate strategy and what are the targets? Are there clear roles and responsibilities? What is the interaction between department and functional areas? Our sustainability maturity assessment enables a well-founded assessment of the initial situation, benchmarked against competitors and best practices.

Uncover and prioritise sustainability topics

Our materiality analysis deep dives into all three aspects of ESG – environmental and social impacts, and corporate governance. What are the most relevant sustainability topics for individual companies? What are the most important topics from a stakeholder perspective? And what are the top priorities? The materiality analysis acts as a guide for your sustainability journey: The analysis not only shows possible ESG risks and action areas, but also potential opportunities to develop competitive advantage. The decisive factor here is the focus on company-specific key areas to remain one step ahead of future competition.
Ambition and sustainability strategy
What is a company´s ambition in terms of sustainability? Where does a company stand compared to its competition? The development of a formulated strategy with measures, targets and an implementation roadmap is the starting point for a successful sustainability transformation.

Define ambition level and strategy

The first step in formulating sustainability strategy is defining aspirations: What level of ambition does the company have? Is the primary goal to ensure compliance, to just go with the flow, or is sustainability an opportunity for market differentiation? With an independent analysis of the drivers in the company-specific industries and a benchmarking comparison, we start the discussion on the level of ambition and the cornerstones for the sustainability strategy. Together we will formulate a target vision and define qualitative and quantitative requirements for sustainability in companies to achieve their vision. We help define action areas and consequences for products, production, and value chain—a strategy that forms the basis for the transformation and anchoring of sustainability into the operating model—all while assisting in communicating authentic progress with internal and external stakeholders.

Shaping measures, objectives, and an implementation roadmap

Concrete measures must be developed for all fields of action. To this end, we jointly define concrete actions, detail the necessary work steps, and set targets and milestones with which the progress of all measures can be tracked. This also includes the definition of responsibilities – who must be involved across functions to ensure a successful implementation of change? Which customer groups, suppliers & networks can help achieve targets? Sustainability ambitions cannot be solved without external cooperation. We support companies in the implementation of all measures and assist with the design of the procedural, organisational and technical prerequisites for anchoring sustainability within companies. Digital tools and platforms are a major enabler of sustainability – but which tools does a company really need? These questions and more can be solved together.
Carbon footprint assessment
Essential building blocks in the field of sustainability are the measurement of emissions and the reduction of the CO₂ footprint. We help overcome this complex challenge, to create a realistic, transparent evaluation and respond to company-specific needs with effective reduction measures.

Reducing the CO₂ footprint as a key initiative

Designing a sustainable and cost-efficient product presents many companies with new challenges. Regulatory measures lead to a compelling need for action and environmental and social aspects are increasingly considered in purchasing decisions. However, the assessment of one's own CO₂ footprint is a crucial step towards ecological transparency. Innovative companies differentiate themselves from their market competitors and as a result enjoy the competitive advantages.

CO₂ reduction as product optimisation

With our CO₂-engineering method, CO₂ equivalent emissions (CO₂e) from products can be demonstrated transparently. The product is reverse engineered and examined and evaluated according to the international standards of DIN EN ISO 14067. For the modelling of CO₂ and other greenhouse gas emissions, we use our own software solutions to convert the entire value chain into a CO₂e balance. In addition to the materials used, the logistics and production processes are also mapped to build a complete and transparent CO₂ model. If necessary, the model can be extended to include the storage, distribution, and use of products to map an entire product life cycle. We not only quantify CO₂e emissions, but we also identify the most significant drivers and help clients utilise them effectively using our H&Z Green Lever Framework. With the knowledge gained from the model, we offer suggestions for optimisation, considering both sustainability and commercial viability.
Agnes Erben
Green Levers – concrete solutions for greater sustainability
Reducing CO₂, recycling, utilising recyclable materials, using energy more efficiently – there are many approaches and solutions for more sustainable business. But which approaches are scalable, suitable for your own product range and practicable? Which measures deliver the highest degree of efficiency, while remaining cost-effective? With the H&Z Framework, green levers are developed in-line with objectives, for each step along the value chain.

Identify and implement sustainability measures

With our approach, we develop measures to reduce CO₂ footprint and improve sustainability in companies. With cross-functional workshops, we address questions like: Where to begin? What are the main drivers of high emission levels? Where are the risks regarding environmental and human rights aspects? We help identify and overcome hurdles and develop improvement measures together through clearly structured Green Lever workshops, which offer scalable and easy to implement sustainability initiatives.

The basis of our Green Lever Framework

Based on the concept of the ten basic principles of the circular economy, our consulting team derives concrete solutions for each phase of the product life cycle, from which we then generate recommendations for action individually tailored to each company. In addition, SUSTAINX's sustainability network provides "Ready to Use" solutions and best practices, including technologies, products, and materials for the success of the initiatives. We then create an implementation roadmap by evaluating applicability of measures before prioritising them based on impact and efficiency. From analysis to implementation, our team of experts accompanies organisations through the process of increasing the sustainability across the entire value chain.
Agnes Erben
Sustainability Transformation – People, Culture & Mindset
Sustainability is now an integral part of the agenda for most companies. As a result, adjustments are necessary to thrive in this new landscape. People and engagement are key – many transformations fail because of resistance to change. H&Z helps to involve people, corporate culture, and mindset to master the transformation together.

Initiating transformation and involving people

Our starting point is to set a sustainability ambition level.What does a company want to achieve? Next, top-down engagement is crucial. Leadership teams must stand behind sustainability ambitions and lead by example, and employees must buy in. No one should expect their employees to do something they are not willing to do, but by involving employees throughout, they can contribute to reaching sustainability targets and even develop new initiatives themselves. With our team of sustainability and transformation experts, we not only help companies define sustainability targets and measures, but also champion employees and bring them along on the journey to anchor sustainability throughout the organisation – this is the prerequisite for successfully implementing a sustainability strategy.

Implementing sustainable transformation goals

To develop the best transformation programme for companies, we follow a proven approach, which enables companies to assess their current level of sustainability and to identify critical success factors and key action areas. We help define and align a clear and transformative sustainability programme and work with a network of experts to conduct a holistic analysis of individual sustainability risks. Based on the degree of maturity and the sustainability goals, company-specific measures are derived, planned, and aligned with growth targets. Finally, we mobilise the organisation as a whole and accompany the implementation of a purposeful change programme that meets the interests of employees and other stakeholders.
SUSTAINX – Community & Solutions for Sustainability
Since sustainability is a transformation journey that affects everyone, everywhere, it comes naturally to us to drive this transformation by applying the Head, Heart and Hand philosophy – for the good of society and our planet. To underline the importance of sustainability, we created an independent company, SUSTAINX, to be the sustainable spearhead of the H&Z Group.


SUSTAINX is a platform and community that facilitates sustainability transformation, combining AI with the collective intelligence from scientists, industry professionals, topic experts and consultants. Founded in 2021, SUSTAINX is an independent company and part of the H&Z Group. It allows organizations not only to find innovative solutions for their sustainability challenges, but to also get a head start in implementing those solutions. SUSTAINX focuses on three areas of sustainability transformation. The first area is about knowing how and where to start, which is of course key to an effective sustainability transformation. The focus in the second area is on finding solutions. Every transformation faces hurdles which are easily overcome by finding and applying innovative solutions. The third area is centred on facilitating cross-industry collaboration. Thus, it is crucial to look to other industries to reapply scalable solutions. We are convinced, that innovation and collaboration will lead to a more sustainable tomorrow. SUSTAINX exists to translate sustainability ambitions into action.

What SUSTAINX does

SUSTAINX is a collaborative community designed to match customers with sustainability solutions. The platform alone offers over 1500 solutions, best practice examples, reports and studies, and continues to grow every day. Part of SUSTAINX’s offering is to hold a programme of roundtable events and working groups on key focus areas such as plastic substitutes, sustainable packaging, and logistics. These events are to encourage customers to begin their sustainable journey or prompt them to optimise their current ESG operations, all while benefitting from cross-industry collaboration. Past attendees have included Red Bull, Hapag Lloyd, BMW, Roche, Deutsche Bahn and more. By creating a community to facilitate cross-industry exchange, sustainability solutions can be identified, reapplied, even co-created, and then applied where necessary at any point throughout a sustainability transformation. Here you can find our more about SUSTAINX.
Sven Steinert

Our expertise for these industries

Special Machinery

Special Machinery

Innovation management is the driving force for a future place in the global economy
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Automotive industry

Automotive industry

Faster, quieter and more efficient - new mobility concepts are the key
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Railway industry

Railway industry 

Railway – stay on track with solutions from H&Z.
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If you would like to learn more about sustainability, please contact our expert directly:

Stefan Aichbauer
Managing Partner
Max-Joseph-Straße 6
80333 Munich
Carbon Neutral Company
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