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Company: Accenture
Industry: Professional services
Headquarters: Dublin, Ireland
Employees globally: 743,000
Footprint: Offices and operations in 49 countries and 200 cities
Global revenue: €59 billion (FY23), of which 33 per cent was attributed to Europe, 47 per cent to North America and 20 per cent to growth markets
European T&E spend 2023: €316 million, of which €65 million was spent on air travel
Global T&E spend 2023: €863 million
Primary TMC partner: CWT
Primary booking tools: GetThere & Cytric
Primary travel risk management provider: International SOS
Primary payment provider: American Express
Travel programme insights: In its FY23 report Accenture noted that an increase in gross margin was partially offset by higher non-payroll costs, “primarily for travel”. Top priorities for 2024 include a new travel tool as a single point of entry for all travel needs and a continued commitment to sustainability goals. In the last year it implemented a traveller wellbeing index and other data-led insights to support the programme’s needs. Around ten per cent of business travel is for internal purposes. At the Institute of Travel Management’s 2023 autumn conference Accenture travel and mobility procurement director Jan Jacobsen aired his frustrations with NDC, saying the focus of airlines is often “too much on the end customer and not on who’s paying,” adding, “I’m all for NDC but let’s get at the table and make it happen together.” Jacobsen also argued that when considering corporate deals, airlines should take into account the overall value of an organisation’s workforce – not only that of its business travel activity, but also of those employees’ leisure spend too. “It could be any supplier, not just airlines, but they have to look at this holistically – the value proposition of what we bring to the table and that’s 740,000 employees worldwide. They also travel for leisure,” said Jacobsen. “We do [airline] status matches for a reason. They ask us to push those promotions because they want our travellers and their residual income. We do inhouse marketing for our [travel] partners and we don’t charge for that. I’m giving you access to a tribe of 740,000 people. That becomes your tribe too. Why doesn’t that have value? That should come into the equation too.”
Sustainability targets: Accenture is targeting net-zero emissions by 2025. It is also establishing new goals to align with the SBTi’s criteria, guidance and recommendations for setting science-based net-zero targets. In 2023, the company set a new, near-term target aligned to 2030, which was approved by the SBTi.
Travel-related sustainability actions: Accenture has implemented an internal carbon price on travel to encourage “climate-smart travel decisions”. It has also developed analytics and reporting focused on business travel emissions and is working towards having 90 per cent of key suppliers disclose their environmental targets and the actions being taken to reduce them by 2025. In 2023, 68 per cent disclosed their targets and 75 per cent disclosed their actions. According to its 2023 sustainability report, Accenture is one of the largest enterprise users of Microsoft Teams in the world, using more than 19 billion minutes of audio and more than 2 billion minutes of video calls in fiscal 2023, powered with renewable energy. When travel is necessary, it is “equipping our people to make climate-smart travel decisions”. Among its levers are the encouragement of rail travel where practical and displaying flight emissions information at the point of sale. The company is a signatory of the World Economic Forum’s Clean Skies for Tomorrow sustainable aviation fuel pledge and is a member of United Airlines’ Eco-Skies Alliance of corporate SAF buyers. In June 2022, in collaboration with Shell, American Express Global Business Travel and the Energy Web Foundation, it launched the blockchain-powered Avelia book and claim platform to help corporates buy and transparently report on the use of SAF.
Sustainability reporting: In FY23, Accenture’s combined Scope 1, 2 and 3 emissions were 542,195 metric tons of CO2e, 57 per cent less than in its FY16 baseline year, equating to 0.7 metric tons of CO2e per employee. Emissions from Accenture’s business travel activity were reported at 195,246 metric tons of CO2e (up from 132,533 in FY22), accounting for 36 per cent of the company’s total emissions. It is working towards a 2025 target of no more than 129,404 metric tons of CO2e compared to 506,841 metric tons of CO2e in its 2016 base year. Emissions from employee commuting were reported as 42,653 metric tons of CO2e.

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