Protecting People and the Planet

Benchmarking Sustainability in the Safety Equipment Industry

Over the last several years, environmental sustainability has exploded in importance and influence in a variety of domains, impacting academia, public companies, and consumers. 

Of course, with new innovation, strategy and goals, also come new challenges. 

To help guide the safety equipment industry through this inflection point, and to provide members with a meaningful benchmark, in March & April 2023 ISEA conducted a survey examining members’ business practices and their views on sustainability as a value creator. Here is a preview of the analysis based on responses from manufacturing companies. 

Key Takeaways

The Safety Equipment Industry is (Cautiously) Embracing Sustainability
Nearly all ISEA members surveyed (96%) employ at least some sustainable business practices. 44% have formal, company-wide sustainability programs.

For Many, Sustainability is Driven by Market Forces
There’s a strong correlation between the number and variety of sustainability practices ISEA members are using and the degree of pressure from end-users. Simply put, the greater the interest and pressure from end-users, the more likely a safety equipment manufacturer is engaging in sustainable business practices. There is, however, a subset of companies whose sustainability efforts are also largely mission and values-driven.

Most End-Users Aren’t Willing to Pay a Sustainability Premium
Only 7% said it was very likely an end-user would pay more for a product with sustainability attributes, even if it helps them meet their organization’s ESG goals.

Sustainability Is Often Not an Important Purchase Criteria
While end-users are increasingly interested in members’ sustainability efforts, that interest doesn’t (yet) translate to purchase criteria. Only 24% have a majority of end-users that consider sustainability an important purchase criteria.

But Members Are Preparing for Coming Changes
Nearly all ISEA members surveyed (89%) expect that their sustainability practices will only grow in importance to end-users over the next 3 years and as an important purchase criterion.

Download the Full Study

ISEA members can log in to access the full study on the member dashboard under Quick Links. 




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