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SignalClient Requirements

Signal specialises in working with leading brands in the charity and financial services sectors to transform their communications and create a better experience with their audiences. Their work includes the design and management of communications including high volumes of direct mail packs.

With a firm dedication to working as sustainably and environmentally responsibly as possible, Signal outsourced its environmental strategy and support to Spring Environmental.

In the beginning was ISO 14001

Spring Environmental began working with Signal in 2019 to deliver ISO 14001 internal audits and representation at external surveillance audits. ISO 14001 is an internationally agreed standard that sets out the requirements for an Environmental Management System (EMS) helping companies to improve their environmental performance. It acts as a framework that can be followed to organise, identify, manage, monitor and improve their environmental performance.

As time has progressed, Spring Environmental has become increasingly integrated into Signal’s approach to environmental management. During 2021 Spring Environmental took over the responsibility for managing and co-ordinating the ISO 14001 system, including advice regarding objectives setting.

One of the first activities for 2021 was a strategic review of the organisational context and setting objectives with senior management. The team agreed to investigate what Net Zero would mean to Signal in terms of its strategic proposition, data collection, costs and benefits.

This process required Spring to quantify the carbon footprint of Signal’s supply chain which identified that the vast majority of the organisational footprint sat with their suppliers, the majority of which were print houses. This meant that Spring Environmental needed to engage with Signal’s supply chain on their behalf, looking at ways of reducing their carbon footprint. This is an ongoing task.

Planning corporate futures

The implementation of an environmental strategy requires continual improvement of an organisation’s systems and its approach to environmental concerns. It takes time and long-term goals need to be put in place in order to reach achievable targets.

Through 2021 and into early 2022, Spring Environmental has been working with the Signal to ready them for their Net Zero Corporate Standard application. The Net Zero Corporate Standard is a way of ensuring that the business as a whole can have confidence that their immediate and long-term environmental targets are aligned with what is needed to protect the planet. The Net Zero Corporate Standard also gives clarity of the company’s action on climate change to a wide range of stakeholders, including charity clients like WWF UK and WaterAid for whom supply chain sustainability and best practice is a critical factor.

Saving the planet…. in progress

Spring Environmental has worked with Signal for three years so far and has made huge strides in progressing its environmental strategy and reducing the company’s carbon footprint. However, in order to reach long-term targets and the end goal of reaching Net Zero, strategies need to regularly be assessed, goals revised and processes reviewed; it is a continual process. Spring Environmental will work alongside Signal to support the business and steer its environmental and sustainability journey.

An office move for Signal presented a rare opportunity to make a step-change in the scope 1 and 2 carbon footprint. With Spring Environmental’s support new office options were reviewed and landlords were interviewed as to their environmental plans. The result was a new office that results in Signal meeting its scope 1 and 2 Net Zero targets in its first year.


Barney Hosey, the CEO of Signal said, “As a company we are committed to doing the right thing, and being leaders in our field when it comes to environmental best practice. The strategic input and ongoing support we get from Spring has been invaluable in helping us set the bar high and ultimately make faster progress on our sustainability journey. We are looking forward to achieving our Net Zero corporate status and using it as a platform to motivate staff; to improve our measurement and reduction advice for clients; and to leverage change in our supply chain.”