Policies and Procedures
We have implemented numerous resource reduction and recycling initiatives related to our buildings, vehicles and business supplies. We encourage the use of electronic customer communications to cut costs and reduce paper waste.
In 2010, Allstate set a goal to achieve a 20% absolute energy-use reduction within our owned portfolio (approximately 39% of all locations at the time) against our 2007 baseline by 2020. Thanks to efforts across the enterprise, we surpassed that 2020 goal in 2014.
Building on our history of energy and emissions reductions, we are still looking for the right approach to long-term energy management. Allstate is evaluating a next-generation target, but to establish a proper baseline, we first need to complete some facility transformations.
In the meantime, we’re reducing consumption by consolidating office space, recapturing heat energy as a byproduct of Allstate’s data center operations and optimizing the use of energy-efficient equipment and systems. Examples of this include HVAC equipment and controls, reduced-lighting power density designs and daylight harvesting in Allstate’s offices.
The trend toward consolidating office space into fewer, larger locations continued in 2019, creating more efficient utilization of space across our owned and leased building portfolios. We now lease or own more than 362,250 square feet of LEED-certified office space.
Programs and Performance
Allstate’s Vehicle Fleet
Allstate operates a fleet of about 3,000 sedans and SUVs to support the business travel requirements of the Claims, Distribution and Service Businesses teams. A few years ago, we started to use more hybrid vehicles to improve our fuel economy and reduce CO2 output. We incentivize employees to choose the hybrid sedan by lowering the associated personal use fee. In 2019, we moved to only hybrid offerings in the US and Canada, and as of early 2020 have a fleet comprising about 50% hybrid.
We also focused on moving to more digital work environments and using technology to decrease our total vehicle footprint and business miles driven. Overall, we have decreased travel by 8.65 million miles from 2018 to 2019. We have also decreased our total vehicle count from about 3,001 vehicles in 2018 to 2,837 vehicles in 2019.
In early 2019, we invested in two fully electric buses to support our Northbrook, Illinois, campus shuttle program. These buses replaced four gas-powered shuttles that previously transported employees around campus.
We make every effort to keep documents electronic. Allstate has a Print Optimization and Paperless Task Force made up of business unit leaders from across the company. It monitors and tracks employee and customer printing and paper use and works with Corporate Brand to make employees aware of the operational and ecological costs of printing.
For necessary paper documents, Allstate maintains a secure program so these can be shredded and recycled. Through a third-party vendor, Allstate employees recycled 33,839,800 pounds of paper in 2019. This helped save 288,766 trees from being used for new paper production.
To support our efforts, we implemented a “Follow Me Print” program that links all print jobs to employee badges. To have documents printed, the employee scans their badge at the printer. If a print job is not retrieved within 72 hours, it disappears from the system. In 2019, the number of abandoned and deleted print jobs equated to about 3,006,841 sheets, or 6,014 reams of paper. This data represents a significant increase from 2018.
We also encourage electronic customer communications to help cut costs and reduce our footprint and our customers’ footprint. Allstate has three paperless initiatives for customers: eSignature, ePolicy and eBill. They can sign up for these free services through MyAccount, our online customer self-service hub. Since 2015, Allstate invested $6.5 million toward helping customers become more paperless by providing an improved digital experience and also redesigning documents so they require fewer pages. Over 44% of customer policies are enrolled in ePolicy, and nearly 40% of customer policies are enrolled in eBill.
Overall, we have reduced paper usage by employees 62.1% and by customers 33.7% relative to our 2012 baseline.
Total % reduction in paper usage from 2012 baseline
Reducing Employee Cafeteria Waste
In the United States, up to 40% of our food goes to waste. Because food requires substantial resources to produce, discarding it wastes not only the food itself, but the resources that contributed to its production. Additionally, once food reaches the landfill, it begins to decompose and produce methane, a greenhouse gas that has an impact on the climate 25 times greater than CO2.
Since 2018, we have been working with a third-party vendor, Parkhurst Dining, for our employee cafes in Northbrook, Illinois, and Hudson, Ohio. Parkhurst offers composting services, in addition to increasing the amount of locally sourced ingredients and healthy food options.
In Irving, Texas, our second-largest location, our cafe partner, American Dining Creations, also offers composting, inventory management systems and low-carbon menu options, such as “Meatless Mondays,” to help employees become more aware of the environmental footprint of their food choices.
Small Electronics Recycling
Allstate replaces about 2,400 small electronic items each month, totaling 29,145 in 2019. Of these, approximately 143 items are in condition to be salvaged or recycled. To address this source of electronic waste, Allstate partnered with Clover Wireless to begin salvaging small electronics; Allstate sends small electronic items to Clover Wireless using their prepaid shipping label, at no cost to Allstate. If there is no salvage value to the item or the data cannot be removed, the item is recycled. More than 800 types of small electronic items qualify to be salvaged. Clover recycles all items or parts that cannot be salvaged, reducing the number of small electronics we dispose of in landfills.
Water Fountains and Filling Stations
To reduce the use of disposable water bottles, we launched an enterprise-wide filling station program. Employees fill their bottles with filtered tap water rather than buying disposable bottles. Allstate maintains 230 filling stations across our facilities. In 2019, those stations saved the equivalent of 1.48 million plastic water bottles in 2019. Over the past decade, we have saved the equivalent of 11,982,040 plastic water bottles.
We now have sparkling water stations installed in 12 locations that further encourage people to bring their own containers.
The magnitude of our global purchasing activity means our procurement practices have far-ranging effects because we can positively influence the businesses from which we source products and services. By understanding how suppliers manage emissions, waste, regulatory compliance and cybersecurity, we can better articulate Allstate’s expectations. By actively managing these risks, we enhance our reputation and align procurement decisions with environmental and social responsibility, which increases the confidence of stakeholders who depend on Allstate’s performance.
We manage environmental and social impacts in our supply chain through agreements, surveys, scorecards, resource reduction programs and policies.
As stated in the Supplier Code of Ethics, all suppliers doing business with Allstate must adhere to our requirements regarding human rights, environmental stewardship, diversity and inclusion, child labor and more.
The Allstate Sustainable Procurement Program aims to enhance Allstate’s reputation, mitigate corporate risks and align purchasing decisions with environmental and social sustainability. Our Sourcing & Procurement Solutions department focuses our responsible purchasing program on our key commodity areas: computer equipment, furniture, leased properties, paper products, professional services, software, utilities and our corporate vehicle fleet.
The main elements of the responsible purchasing program include:
- Sustainable procurement road maps: Category-specific procurement guidance with a phased process, timelines and key considerations for using our supplier evaluation tools.
- Sustainability questionnaires: Category-specific surveys containing key performance indicators (KPIs) to benchmark suppliers on the most relevant sustainability risks for eight commodity areas.
- Sustainable procurement playbooks: Procurement category-specific guidance providing detailed rationale behind assessing material impacts and how suppliers should respond to the KPIs.
Allstate’s Sourcing & Procurement Solutions organization includes a sustainability sourcing lead who is developing and implementing ESG-specific practices in our supply chain. The sustainability sourcing lead began developing best practices for product and service categories prioritized by the needs of the business. In the future, we hope to better understand our business’s footprint by increasing visibility and transparency in the supply chain and tracking, managing and reporting on sustainability KPIs for our suppliers.
The sustainability questionnaire contains KPIs to assess a supplier against the most material impacts related to that resource. Each KPI has a dedicated subsection.
- Rationale and best practices: Provides the commodity manager with the context for asking suppliers to respond to the specific KPI. Where relevant, best practices to describe how suppliers should address the KPI are also provided.
- Supporting documentation: Lists optional documentation for commodity managers to request from suppliers to verify responses to the KPI.
- Case study: Provides either a demonstration of the rationale behind asking the question or an example of how a company addresses the material impact. The intent is to give commodity managers real-world context.
- Additional resources: Provides links for commodity managers to access additional research or guidance, should the manager receive questions from suppliers that are not addressed in the playbook. Managers can also share these directly with suppliers.
Sustainable procurement playbooks provide a detailed rationale behind assessing material impacts and how suppliers should respond to the KPIs. We distribute the playbooks to Allstate’s commodity managers in each spending category, who then use the tools to help suppliers provide required information for each KPI. We continue to mature our process to accurately and consistently track supplier KPIs, as well as evaluate emerging product and service categories where we may need to develop and issue new playbooks.