Stakeholder engagement

Our stakeholders are helping us become a better business. We are working with government, customers, non-governmental organisations, industry and academics to address the UK’s challenges around water, energy and waste.

Having a regular dialogue with our stakeholders helps to build lasting relationships, opens a forum for constructive debate, and challenges us to do better. We try to wield our influence on social and environmental issues as a force for good through our position papers.

To focus on the issues that matter most to our business and to our stakeholders, we undertake an annual assessment of the environmental, social and governance risks and opportunities – a materiality review. In 2013, we asked 273 stakeholders where they believed we should be focusing going forward. These areas included long-term thinking and environmental compliance; innovation and customer satisfaction; health and safety; and apprenticeships and engaging schools.

In touch with customers and suppliers

Examples of engagement



  • Created London’s first energy from waste district heating network

  • Customers have shown significant interest in our ‘soup’ and ‘biscuit’ facilities

  • Circulated e-newsletters and held webinars

  • Improved how we listen to customers

  • Held a technology day for private finance customers

  • Partnered with IBM on smart cities technology


  • 30 audits of high-risk/high-spend suppliers using Ecovadis

  • Quarterly review meetings, supplier questionnaires and action plans

  • Free workshops in sustainability and setting CO2 targets

  • Shared best practice at ASDA Question Time panel

  • Re-certification by the Chartered Institute of Purchasing and Supply accreditation

  • One of the first companies to sign Business in the Community’s Access Pledge for a fair and transparent supply chain

  • Free, no-obligation site audit to help small and medium enterprises (SMEs) minimise waste production

  • Shared our experiences at The Prince’s Seeing is Believing programme for responsible procurement


  • ​Brand awareness increased by 3% to 79%
  • Companies like McDonald’s and Superdrug have all benefited from our better listening training

  • Supplier satisfaction scores (first tier suppliers) 66%

  • CO2 baselines calculated for 10 first tier suppliers

  • 68 attendees from 61 supplier businesses at our SME sustainability workshop. Over 90% of attendees identified themselves as CR advocates afterwards


In dialogue with our people

Examples of engagement



  • Employee engagement survey

  • Intranet and internal blogs on sustainability

  • Board roadshows and Board member site visits

  • Poster campaigns and ‘Toolbox Talks’ on health and safety

  • Green office programme – increase recycling, improve energy efficiency and reduce water usage at all our sites

  • Innovation forums to capture employee business ideas

  • Well-established apprenticeship programme


  • Interim employee survey revealed 61% rated Veolia as being on track for delivering on our engagement plans
  • Veolia won Vocational Qualifications Employer of the Year for England

  • 354 positions for apprentices


Getting to know our neighbourhoods

Examples of engagement


  • Back2Business work placements and training for those marginalised or excluded from mainstream employment including ReStart for the long-term unemployed, Welfare to Work partnerships, rehabilitation for ex-offenders and homeless clients

  • Participated in the Speakers for Schools and Inspiring the Future programmes, which offer career insights for young children

  • Waste campaigns, for example Love Food Hate Waste

  • Tiger Tracks’ support with Save the Wild Tigers at St Pancras station, London

  • £4.7 million awarded to community projects via the Veolia Environmental Trust

  • Partnered with social enterprises at 55% of our household waste and recycling centres

  • Filled 54 placements for the long-term unemployed through our ReStart programme

  • Facility Open Days attracted over 3,800 visitors across the UK

  • We have engaged over 110,000 pupils and 66,000 members of the public on waste and water awareness and environmental issues since 2010


Sharing with government and civil society

Examples of engagement


  • Position papers on key issues facing our society and the environment, available to all

  • Provided evidence to the House of Lords EU Sub-Committee on Agriculture, Fisheries, Environment and Energy as part of their inquiry into the EU’s contribution to food waste prevention

  • Member of the Ellen MacArthur Foundation; active participant in its Project Mainstream on the circular economy

  • Worked with a cross-party parliamentary group to create a standardised Social Value framework

  • Two graduates seconded to Defra to work on the Red Tape Challenge

  • Through PolicyConnect, we are an active member of the Sustainable Resource Forum and of the Associate Parliamentary Sustainable Resource Group

  • Developed solutions to help the government tackle challenging waste streams such as radioactive waste and the decommissioning of oil rigs and shipyards

  • We offered our perspective on the Social Value Act: “Calculating social value will be problematic as there is currently no recognised model to measure it. With this in mind, we urge Government to set up a task group to develop such a model.” MP Hazel Blears is now working with us to move this forward

  • Working with The Sustainable Business Partnership to calculate the social impact of our activities within the London Borough of Southwark has enabled us to consider impacts and outcomes across project activities, which we can further use in ongoing bids.