Sustainable development is development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.

(UN: The Brundtland Report, 1987) [1]

As a partner-managed consultation company, we have dedicated ourselves to the motto sustainable performance through people. Because sustainable acting leads to sustainable growth. For the hkp/// group, this means aligning business actions with the well-being of employees, society and the environment.

For us, growth is not an end in itself nor empty words – instead it is a driver and lived practice, a continuous challenge and an ambitious goal. We want to preserve the foundations of life for future generations to come. As people and as a company, we want to act sustainably to contribute to an improved future worth living that we can pass on to our grandchildren. In this context, we understand sustainable acting as it is described in the charter of the Sustainability Committee of UCLA: 


integration of environmental health, social equity and economic vitality in order to create thriving, healthy, diverse and resilient communities for this generation and generations to come.

(Charter of the UCLA Sustainability Committee) [2]

The following goals give a specific direction to this understanding of sustainability:

  • Our work shall not damage the climate or environment.
  • We advocate for fair education opportunities, since education is the basis of self-determination and choosing  your own path in life – and we are reliant on bright minds.
  • We foster diversity, because it enriches us as humans, socially and professionally.
  • We are a community of committed fellow citizens. This means that we have an attitude of actively engaging in social happenings and living values such as humanity and solidarity both inwardly and outwardly.


Climate protection and levels of impact

Measures we take to pursue these goals can be differentiated into central levels of impact that include our consulting practice as well as internal and external influencing factors. 
One area of action that regards all areas is our initiative on climate protection and the associated reduction of greenhouse gases, such as CO2. According to our  own analyses, hkp/// group currently meets scope 1 and 2 of the Greenhouse Gas Protocol Standard and is therefore climate-neutral in relation to the direct release of gases harmful to the climate in their own company (scope 1) as well as the indirect release of gases harmful to the climate by energy suppliers (scope 2). 
We are working on the more complex challenge of reducing or compensating for the indirect release of gases harmful to the climate in the upstream and downstream delivery chain (scope 3). In addition, we are planning an independent audit and certification of our climate balance.
We differentiate between the following four impact levels in the implementation or initiation of environmental and socially sustainable boundary conditions and courses of action: Consulting, Office and Travel, Employees and Corporate Citizenship. The following shows the underlying basic approach and specific measures to be taken. 

1)  Consulting

Sustainable performance through people: This motto units our consulting focuses and is the basic understanding of our work. As a strategic HR and corporate governance consultancy, we make organizations smarter, derive the HR strategy from the corporate strategy and translate these into specific tools, design optimal employee experiences and develop sustainable solutions that take the interests of investors, regulators, companies, employees and the society into consideration. 
The hkp/// group takes on an important facilitator position in the process and helps to transform organizations, and make their processes more efficient, more effective and more transparent and more user-friendly for all stakeholders – which is a task that also affects the sustainable development of companies. In addition, we integrate appropriate environmental and social sustainability criteria, for example, into compensation systems and in the process we help companies to meet their responsibilities as part of ESG criteria, especially with a view to human capital management and good corporate governance.
We are not only available to consult companies, but we also actively shape the discussion where we are active. For example, we regularly take a stand in public consultation processes and work in expert committees with well-known people from business and science to find a solution to specific challenges. Examples of this are different governmental committees on corporate governance, the Institute for Corporate Governance in SMEs at the Frankfurt School of Finance, the Working Group on Guidelines for Sustainable Executive Board Compensation, and the HR-Tech Ethics Advisory Board. 
In addition, we are initiating the HR Start-up Award, which gets company founders in contact with decision makers from HR management. This is an initiative that presents and promotes new solutions for the future of work and shows new ways of working together.  

2) Office & Travel

Resource conservation and the most climate-neutral energy and emission balance possible are core goals of our daily existence at our locations in Frankfurt and Amsterdam. This also applies to our travel activity. 

Examples of measures in this field include:

  • All hkp/// group employees receive a job ticket for Frankfurt Rhine-Main regional transport to avoid unnecessary individual commuting by private car.
  • The headquarters of the hkp/// group is Tower 185 in Frankfurt. The building has a LEED certification in Gold (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design). The intelligent energy management contributes to this, which saves up to 20% CO2 emissions compared to conventional buildings. The building website has information about additional energy and resource-conserving features of Tower 185. 
  • The office premises of the hkp/// group are 100% operated with green power.
  • Employees are encouraged to only print out documents that cannot be viewed or edited electronically or that can only be viewed or edited electronically with great difficulty. This has resulted in our printing volume being cut in half between 2019 and 2023. 

3) Employees

Employees are the head, heart and soul of any company – this applies all the more to businessconsultancies whose excellence depends on intellect, commitment, but also on cohesion and the right chemistry in the team. 

At the same time, a company’s true culture is shown in the area of employee management and collaboration: Is it ultimately all just about maximizing profits, or is it about a conviction characterized by solidarity and humanity? The latter is deeply rooted in the hkp/// group’s DNA and is shown by many examples – from health services to the promotion of employee commitment. 

  • We do not have any “billable hours targets.” Many consultancies have billable hours as a standard measurement, i.e. a certain number of billable hours that someone must reach per year to receive a certain bonus. They also impede a team culture in which colleagues help each other, do research on a new topic on non-billable projects or simply pass on knowledge internally. At hkp/// group, the focus is on the team and this is why we have consciously decided not to use billable hours as a target.
  • We believe in diversity. This enriches our everyday lives in our interaction with eachother. But it is also an important success factor for our projects, because it guarantees a diversity of perspectives. Without being required, we have a 50/50 proportion of men and women– from the consultant to the partner level. Our work is characterized by the perspectives of more than one dozen nationalities.
  • The hkp/// group did not have to let go of any employees due to the coronavirus pandemic. Although the reduced working hours work model was used to varying degrees in some areas, all employees – regardless of their proportion of their reduced working hours – still received 90 percent of their wages. In addition, we also invested in the future during the height of the pandemic and hired and incorporated new colleagues. All hkp/// group employees received the Covid-19 vaccinations very early on and as part of the booster vaccination.
  • Support in economically challenging times: The hkp/// group was one of the first companies to pay a tax-free inflation bonus of EUR 3,000 in 2022 to their employees due to the rising cost of living and energy prices.
  • Employee empowerment is not a marketing keyword in the hkp/// group, but rather a practice that is lived in all areas. We support our colleagues’ ideas and initiatives – especially in connection with social and environmental commitment. Since sustainability is not something that is handed top-down to us, it rather emerges from the core of our company – whether in the form of groups working on the topics of climate neutrality, health and well-being, or by supporting employee-initiated donation campaigns.
  • Health: 
    • Employees work out together with a fitness coach twice per week at the Frankfurt office. 
    • We have offered all of our employees the coronavirus vaccination, with boosters. Flu prevention was also offered – and gratefully accepted.
  • Lifelong learning: We never stop learning — and we learn from each other, and with each other. This is ensured not only by our projects, but also by the many continuing education or advanced training opportunities. This is done through onboardings that are available not only to newcomers, lunch-and-learn formats such as our weekly regular meeting of consultants and managers, external training sessions or through the production of useful learning materials, such as videos on new methods, tools and technologies. 
  • Corporate Events: Whether it is the annual summer event, the Christmas party or the many other smaller opportunities to learn and have fun together - these events are an expression of our culture. They connect us as individuals. And they combine substantive input with relaxed get-togethers and a lot of blueness à la hkp/// group – actions where it is normal to laugh about yourself too.

4) Corporate Citizenship

The hkp/// group is an organization of fellow citizens, i.e. socially, politically or environmentally committed people. We are a part of society just like everyone else and we are responsible for it. We meet this responsibility through various activities locally and globally.

  • Regular technology donations (laptops) to schools or refugee shelters,
  • financing study scholarships (for example as part of the Deutschlandstipendiums),
  • furniture donations to schools (such as to the Erlenbachschule in Elz, Germany),
  • Various donation campaigns, for example for the FeM Mädchenhaus Frankfurt, for Aktion Deutschland Hilft (Ahr flood relief) or the Kabul Airlift, as well as in support of Ukraine (for example through donations to Malteser Hilfsdienst and participation in the city of Frankfurt's donations in kind campaign).

Governance: responsible, sustainable and a long-term focus

Our business activities as well as all sustainability efforts are founded on the highest standards and specific measures in terms of governance. 

We are an independent and entrepreneurial consultancy.The hkp/// group belongs to all of us – the partners, but also the employees who have the opportunity to acquire shares after working with the group for three years. We manage our projects and the hkp/// group in the same way: responsibly, sustainably and with a focus on the long-term, as owners and entrepreneurs.

We set the highest standards for our professional governance through our externally appointed board of directors with respected appointees. We work according to the highest professional ethical standards. Confidentiality is part of our DNA. We are completely GDPR-compliant and ISIS 12-certified for our IT security and the protection of our customer data. 

Sustainability requires continuous commitment

We consider ourselves to be at the start of a long journey with the attitude described above, the status quo as well as the activities in the field of sustainable business. Because sustainability needs continuity, the will to constantly work on yourself, and to question and change things in all areas. We are willing to do this. Which is why we are grateful for your suggestions and your feedback. 



Author Constantin Härthe

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