Sustainability as priority number one in the new age of real estate and construction


BOMEX Edmonton focusses on how to stay competitive by promoting Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) practices through sustainability

Industries across Canada have begun to embrace the importance of a solid ESG strategy, either due to the demands of their customers and stakeholders, or because it’s been shown to boost efficiency and long-term sustainability.

The real estate and construction industry is at the forefront of this transformation.

In September, the BOMEX 2023 conference in Edmonton centred on how this societal shift has impacted the industry’s performance and potential for decades to come.

As the market and the industry as a whole have shown, progressing towards sustainability in a meaningful way is key to success; companies both big and small must walk the walk to stay relevant.

Key takeaways from BOMEX 2023

Depending on the size of your organization, sustainability can mean a lot of different things. From sustainable buildings built with climate change in mind, to establishing remote work and technology policies, there are plenty of opportunities to embrace this cultural shift.

Here are a few aspects of sustainability discussed at the BOMEX conference:

  • Supporting the next generation of leaders: As more qualified young people come into the industry, importance must be placed on supporting them in the transition to leadership. The diversity they bring to the industry will only benefit an organization’s ESG strategies and working closely with existing and accomplished leaders will help them understand what sustainability can look like with historical information in mind. To a certain degree, it’s up to these industry leaders to help usher in the next generation to help affect the change the industry has been working towards for decades.
  • Future regulatory compliance: Preparing for an unpredictable future is more important than ever. What future industry regulatory compliance might look like when it comes to ESG is key. How to prepare for those frameworks means creating flexibility within your organization to be able to adapt as new regulations come up so that you’re not behind but can instead lead the pack with agility.
  • Return to work post-pandemic: While it’s likely still an evolving process for many organizations from the smallest businesses to the largest corporations across Canada, it’s obvious that everything didn’t go back to exactly as it was before the COVID-19 pandemic. Many organizations do not expect employees to be in the office five days a week, and others have sold their buildings or ended leases to be completely remote. There is opportunity in this space to become creative and cater to your workforce to enable your employees to be productive, find what they value in a workspace, and support them to stay engaged and active members of your organization.
  • Digital transformation and sustainability: While it’s an oft-heard buzzword in today’s vernacular, digital transformation isn’t about technology as much as it’s about business objectives and outcomes. The opportunities that exist within the digital transformation space abound and can be catered to your needs with initiatives like the Canada Digital Adoption Program (CDAP). Through the Boost Your Business Technology Grant, eligible businesses can offset the costs of engaging with an MNP advisor by 90 percent to develop a firm digitization strategy and apply for an interest free loan of up to $100,000 to implement your plan.

Sustainable solutions

Ultimately, investors dictate where money goes and across the board, they’re looking for solid, actionable, and meaningful ESG strategies with sustainability at the core.

Digital transformation goes a long way to supporting your sustainability goals and can be as unique as your organization. With the help of a trusted advisor, you can determine your digital maturity to see where you’re at and where you need to go. From the risk implications to the gaps that exist and building up your digital foundation, taking steps to better understand your organization in this way has never been more important.

Meeting the needs of your organization and its stakeholders comes down to engagement and having an industry professional on your side, in the form of a trusted advisor, can ensure you’re approaching every opportunity with the knowledge needed to succeed. At this pinnacle time of a shift in the culture, reassessing your needs and building a roadmap to reach your ESG goals is an ongoing process that an advisor can support you through.

To learn more about your digital maturity, visit our Digital Maturity Health Check page or contact Lee Thiessen, Vice President, Real Estate & Construction, at [email protected], or Dean Leesui, Real Estate & Construction Digital Leader, at [email protected]