Chapter 5: Stakeholder consultation


Chapter 5: Stakeholder consultation + Access to Webinar

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A stakeholder consultation process is an important part of any sustainability certification standard. In fact for many standards an auditor is required to check that the consultation process has been carried out adequately. The auditor will even conduct their own stakeholder consultation to confirm this.

But it’s not easy. The reality is that, for many companies, conducting a stakeholder consultation is the most problematic part of the certification process — especially where relationships with those stakeholders have not been good. However, standards do not allow for exclusion of any stakeholders. It is therefore important to know the process and to understand what is expected — and not just of you.

That is because many of the standards-setting bodies also find stakeholder consultation the most difficult part of the process. In fact they have often been less than clear on what is expected and there have been several cases where a certification body’s interpretations have been challenged. You should therefore be able to refer to the specific requirements of the standard that you are dealing with.
With that in mind, this section will attempt to take you through some of the basic requirements of this potentially vexing process.