Ecovadis ratings

Norden awarded with a silver in EcoVadis sustainability rating 2023

For Norden, taking sustainability seriously is part of the company’s DNA, and there are any number of reasons why Norden – or any company, for that matter – puts a strong focus on sustainability. That could be regulatory compliance, reduced business costs, competitive advantage, brand image, talent acquisition – the list is long and varied, but ultimately a company has to quantify their sustainability efforts in a way that lets  customers and vendors evaluate and understand how these efforts are beneficial.

EcoVadis is the world’s largest and most trusted provider of business sustainability ratings, offering independent external validation and reliable benchmarks for how companies address both environmental and ethical challenges. More than 100 000 companies are rated by EcoVadis, which is present in more than 175 countries representing roughly 200 different industries. EcoVadis has been validating Norden for the past six years. “It is important for Norden to have that external, independent validation,” explains Anna Johansson, Quality & HSE Manager, Norden.

“The big advantage is that there is quality assurance of the information, something that is crucial as demands increase on both legal and various environmental standards.”

EcoVadis performs an annual review which requires companies to supply various verifying documentation before receiving their rating. It’s an ongoing process and the requirements are quite stringent.  Companies can’t live on one validation for ten years – it needs to be done every year and the documentation supplied needs to be the most updated and current. In other words, this isn’t an exercise in greenwashing; it’s a very strict process with four areas rated: environment, labor and human rights, ethics, and sustainable procurement.


These different areas are weighted, so environment has a very high score in the overall calculation, as labor and human rights. Ethics and procurement are weighted slightly less in the overall evaluation, although still very important. EcoVadis looks for different things in the different areas, such as if the company has guidelines for employees, and what guidelines are required for both Norden and the companies they work with. Different metrics and data are looked at, for example how much carbon dioxide is produced in operations, how it is measured and is it going up or down. The final rating gives companies a rating of gold, silver, or bronze.

“I’m happy to say that we have an improved rating in all four areas measured, so we are silver at the moment and are very close to moving into gold – and we’re working hard to get that gold rating!”

“We have high standards and legal requirements in Sweden, and corporate responsibility is a natural part of our culture. Having these four clear areas where we will be validated is very helpful for us, as it allows us to focus on what is important and to push us to document our proactive work. We are measured against the same or similar industries, and I am happy to say that we have been rated above our competitors in every area” says Anna Johansson.

In addition to rating companies, EcoVadis points to any gaps and where to prioritize corrective actions in order to improve in different areas. There are several hundred questions that need to be answered, and for Norden, this means teams from across the organization are involved, including IT, HR, purchasing, etc. So, it’s not just the quality and environmental departments involved – it’s departments from across the whole organization who contribute.

Norden commitment to reducing their environmental impact has long been known to both their customers and the industry at large. Many improvements are related to their new facility, where the company has full control over things like energy consumption, ventilation, and lighting, which has reduced heat and energy consumption by roughly 50%. Norden is also working actively with both behaviour and technical solutions, taking the next steps to use even more energy efficient equipment in the machines.


“We developed this energy safe function in the machines, which reduces energy consumption, even before energy prices started to rise,” explains Anna Johansson. “So we were ready and had the machines available when the demand was growing – if we had been working in response to the energy price increases, rather than already having done the work, we’d be late to the market with our solution, so it’s crucial that we know our markets and our customers in order to stay ahead of the challenges and be ready with solutions when our customers require them.”

“Continuing this work is crucial for our customers. We have an amazing group of engineers working on this and even more importantly, the Norden management team is committed. Having that commitment in our strategy gives a strong message to both our customers and employees.”

Ecovadis score

Norden has a global footprint, but while requirements around the environment and sustainability can differ from region to region, this has no impact on the company’s approach. The machines Norden delivers have the same functions no matter where they are sold, and as energy prices continue to rise in many parts of the world, customers understand that a machine that is energy optimized and using less resources is going to not just be environmentally friendly, it’s also going to have a positive impact on their bottom line.

“Our sales team has an important role in explaining to customers what we are doing, such as the energy saving function on our machines, which reduces air and heat consumption and ultimate translates to lower energy costs,” says Anna Johansson. “Companies want to take sustainable steps, but business is still business, so understanding that reduction of energy consumption directly translates to lower energy costs can be a key factor for customers.”

As regulations continue to tighten alongside customer and market requirements, Norden will not just continue to meet demands. As a premium supplier with long-term relationships with customers, staying on the front line in terms of both technology and demands is a must have in order to maintain their business position as a market leader.

“It’s part of our business to have long lifecycles for our machines, where we are able to upgrade and rebuild over time, which allows our customers to get a long life from their machines. We make sure to have spare parts and upgrades readily available to facilitate this long life, and we are looking at other areas that can be improved.

Norden has already done so much in terms of addressing sustainability challenges both for themselves and for their customers, so what is next and how will this impact their EcoVadis rating?

“We have a number of plans in the works, such as solar panels, reducing energy consumption in the machines even further,” says Anna Johansson. “But we also need to improve in engaging our suppliers, so we have started to have a closer collaboration with suppliers on these issues, because it’s not just what we do in our own work and facility, it’s what they do as well – the whole chain is key to making improvements, so we’re focusing on that even more.”

Energy saving on machines Factory In a Box