2020 Impact Report

A Message From The Neo Team

At Neo, we believe it is an important part of business to share both the good and the bad.

 

We’re reporting on our company’s 2020 social and environmental impact, which we will call our yearly ‘Neo Impact Report’. This report will give you an opportunity to take a quick look into some of the impactful happenings during our 1st year of reporting.

 

2020 was a year deeply felt, and it proved to be a year which required new levels of human focus, courage, and compassion. In the face of the global pandemic, we still have held our heads high and confronted gross and persistent racial injustice, galvanized in climate activism, and pushed forward for human progress.

 

The focus of our report documents what has been accomplished in 2020. It was a year when we significantly strengthened our global activism in championing the Black Lives Matter movement, delved into the vast lack of transparency within the funeral industry through our Hospice initiatives, and focused on carbon offsetting via our tree planting charity partners.

 

We made major headway in our carbon offsetting programme, where we are measuring, reducing, and then offsetting all CO2 emitted not only through our funeral operations, but what is emitted from our employees. One area we want to call out specifically where our results are coming too slowly is in Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion where we have seen a lack of female representation and racial diversity in leadership.

 

There is still work to do, and we at Neo are encouraged by our plans to continue improving in 2021, including in places where we fell short in 2020.

How Do We Define Impact?

The definition of “impact” means to have a strong effect on someone or something. Impact measurement, as we believe, means assessing the qualitative and quantitative impact that a company has on society and the environment. We measure our impact in three ways:

1. Measuring the social and environmental causes we’ve directly and indirectly supported, and tracking how much awareness we have generated by looking at our social media analytics;

2. Tracking, measuring, and then offsetting our carbon emissions emitted by our company and suppliers;

3. Benchmarking our results against the progression towards the UN Sustainable Development Goals and the B Corp Impact Assessment methodology.

In our reporting, we go a step further and outline where we see ourselves in a year’s time, ways to improve, and how we will get there.

Our Core Values

Our Company bylaws were changed to embed purpose and hold Neo accountable to be an organisation that produces a material benefit for the people it intends to serve. Through our business operations, the following values are represented. You will find that our values are themes that cascade in everything we do:

Human Rights & Progression
We promise to be committed to advance the rights of everyone. This is our B Corp standard. We aim for equity, opportunity, and justice for all communities that have been historically marginalized.
Climate Action & Responsibility

We vow to continue donating 1% of our annual net revenue to nonprofit charitable organisations that promote environmental conservation and sustainability.

Human Rights & Progression

We are committed to achieving equity, opportunity and Justice for communities across the globe that have been historically marginalised, with recognition that is tied to fair livelihoods that enable individuals, families and communities to thrive.

 

We’ve worked to inherently support Human Rights & Progression, and the result we have seen has been a key step towards social impact and change.

Social Progress

Some examples of this work include, publishing a blog on how funeral directors can have a direct impact on supporting the BLM movement. We also ensure we bring light and awareness to challenges and issues revolving around Anti-Asian Hate and LGBTQ+ issues. To date we have:

 

10% of our social media is Dedicated to bringing to light issues surrounding: Women’s Representation, LGBTQ+ issues, BAME diversity and inclusion.

Everyone should be treated equally, even in death

There’s no room for Asian Hate at Neo

Supporting Black History Month

-43.5 % of posts dedicated to Women’s Empowerment

 

-26.1 % of posts relating to BAME issues

 

-30.4% of posts lifting LGBTQ+ communities and bringing awareness to the issues these communities face in death

We’ve done this through blogs, donations, and joint webinars advocating for sustainability and affordability in the funeral industry and greater support for end-of-life care.

 

We partnered up with Birmingham St Mary’s Hospice this year where we’ve jointly written a blog post highlighting the heroic effort that goes on behind the scenes at the hospice. Read our blog about A Day in the Life with our Hospice Heroes.

 

Link to our Q&A session:

We participated last August in a workshop centered around funeral poverty and sustainability led by Quaker Social Action. We learned about helping our customers apply for the Funeral Expenses Payment, and how to sensitively advise someone on how to arrange a funeral.

We have looked at diversity within the company, within senior management, and within our supplier network. Through our DEI (Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion) policy, we have fulfilled the following KPI as required in the B Corp Impact Assessment.

Human Rights & Progression Improvement Plan

Our work to advance Human Rights & Progression does not stop there. In 2021 we want to:

1. Increase the visibility of marginalised communities on our social media pages by at least 10%. That means giving more share of voice to the communities we champion and strive to help.

2. See a substantial increase in diverse management and management from underrepresented populations.

3. Expand our reach and not only be a platform for diverse communities, but also be an outlet for our employees to express their own convictions and beliefs

Climate & Sustainability

Our founding ethos is bound in projecting a commitment to a positive, life-giving environmental impact that restores degraded natural environments and enables increased diversity and abundance of ecosystems. Climate change activism is a life-long plight, and we are excited to continue progressing in environmental stewardship.

 

Neo is committed to transforming the funeral industry and we are passionate about sustainability. Our goal is to become the most environmentally progressive funeral provider on the planet. We want to go beyond reducing the negative impact of the funeral industry by fundamentally changing how it operates, and making sustainability a central focus of end-of-life service. We pursue our commitment to climate action in three ways:

We aim to help industry participants reduce their emissions. We carry out due diligence to select only the most environmentally friendly operators in the UK.

We operate as a carbon-neutral enterprise. We measure the total emissions of our operations and then implement a carbon offset scheme that results in a neutral footprint.

Every cremation we carry out includes a minimum 200% carbon offset using our tree planting charity partners.

In order to offset the emissions created by our organisation, we first calculate the CO2 produced in all operational activities. We continue to review these elements so that we continuously improve.

Transportation: This includes all the emissions created from the collection of the deceased and the delivery of the ashes back to the next of kin.

Administration: We take into consideration the emissions produced in our administrative operations, which include the energy used in our co-working space and our travel to and from work.

Place of Rest: We have calculated the emissions created while the loved one is in our care by taking into account the electricity and resources a mortuary uses.

Cremation: We calculate the emissions produced from every cremation we carry out. We are also mindful to use the most efficient and state of the art crematoriums in the industry.

Neo’s total carbon emission was determined using a carbon footprint calculator.

CO2 Emmissions and Offset 2020 Graph

In 2020 Neo emitted 12.16 tonnes of CO2. This is broken down into the following:

In 2020 Neo emitted 12.16 tonnes of CO2, our goal was to offset at least 26 tones of C02. We were able to reach this goal and offset 44 tonnes of CO2

Climate Action & Responsibility Improvement Plan

We began 2020 with clear objectives to follow the UN’s Climate Neutral Now framework of measuring, reducing, and then voluntarily offsetting all carbon emissions our organisation emits.

 

For 2021, we are improving and pushing this initiative further by quantifying our emissions and spotting the main sources, plan and implement reductions within our supply chain, choosing climate change projects to be a part of, and finally to assess our results, revise our methodology and reporting practices, and then publicly share those to our community.

 

In addition, we aim to make a stronger push towards focusing on not only what is on land but also what is at sea. In our B Corp Impact Assessment, we scored low on questions pertaining to monitoring and managing our water usage (we scored 0 points) in addition to our wildlife conservation measures. We promise to change this. 

Applying the B Corp Methodology to everything we do

A huge milestone last year was completing the rigorous yet effective B Corp Impact Assessment. The assessment, which takes most companies at least 3-6 months to complete, deep dives into the crevices of a company to measure its impact and progress. The B Corp Impact Assessment scored Neo in 5 key areas:

Evaluating how Neo can improve and enhance our service for our customers and consumers. We scored the highest on the ‘mission lock’ section where we garnered 10/10 points. The mission lock acknowledges and awards points to organisations who produce corporate forms and amendments which legally preserves the company’s mission and stakeholders regardless of company ownership. 

Seeing how Neo contributes to and advances the social and economic well being in the community in which we operate. Neo was assessed on areas such as diversity and inclusion, supply chain management, and philanthropy. 

Evaluating what Neo can do to enhance policies and practices pertaining to its mission, ethics, accountability and transparency. This area looks at how we engage with our customers and touches on topics such as ethical and positive marketing, data privacy, data security, and more. 

This impact area evaluates Neo’s overall environmental stewardship, including how well we manage environmental topics like our company water usage, climate change, and impacts on all land and life. 

Identify any potentially sensitive industries, practices, outcomes or fines/sanctions of your company that are not explicitly called out in the rest of the assessment.

The assessment, which comprises over 200 questions, requires tangible proof of how the organisation positively impacts the areas mentioned above.

Neo’s impact methodology measures our company’s entire social and environmental performance. From our supply chain, materials, to our charitable giving, and employee benefits, we assess every facet of our company.

That’s not all, in order to continue our efforts to have a positive impact on the planet, we have partnered with a number of social and environmental initiatives. You can learn more about them by clicking the button below.

Our Outlook for 2021

We’ve learned in 2020 that simple actions will not suffice. We must be radical in our approach to truly practice and live out our core values of Human Rights & Progression and Climate Change Action & Responsibility.

 

In 2020, we offset 12.16 tonnes of CO2, which was up over 200% from the previous year. We worked with various suppliers throughout 2020 because it offers us a way in with mortuaries, crematoria, and funeral directors who might not prioritise sustainability, but whose habits we would like to change.

 

By only ever promoting sustainability on our website and across social media, we are turning all of our customers’ attention to funeral alternatives that work with, not against, the planet.

For 2021 we will focus on:
  • Pushing our sustainability partnerships in reducing and developing new ways to eradicate our carbon footprint.

  • Working even more closely with our suppliers in helping them become more sustainable. Now that relationships have been forged, it is time to change the way we work. This could be working together to create a new due diligence reporting mechanism, or even helping them become Certified B Corps.

  • Vying for greater diversity within organisational management and leadership.

  • Providing more support for our neurodiverse employees.

When do you need our service?

A loved one has passed

I’m planning ahead

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