According to research from Verdantix, in some industry sectors, such as chemicals and manufacturing, the driving force for the use of Environmental Management Software has now gone beyond compliance to include broader improvements in environmental performance. Emilie Beauchamp of Verdantix said “Software suppliers now offer new capabilities to respond to firms’ ever-growing requirements to manage, report and optimise their environmental performance across greenhouse gases, hazardous waste, water, toxic releases, toxic chemicals and refrigerants.’’
The conclusions are drawn from a comparison of 12 environmental management software applications based on interviews with 15 buyers, supplier interviews and questionnaire responses, and product demonstrations.
Enablon, IHS and SAP are the global market leaders. The Green Quadrant Environmental Management Software (Global) 2012 report says that the three companies are ahead of other suppliers due to the breadth of their software’s management and reporting functionality, their pre-built workflows and task management processes, integration with other systems, and large customer base. Of the other suppliers in the research, another four were identified as having a compelling feature/function set and large-scale deployments, while the remainder have highly customisable solutions.
There were differing opinions among customers about the market growth, which may reflect the finding from Verdantix that forward-looking firms are already deploying environmental management software on a global scale, but most multinationals have immature EH&S technology strategies, based on using various legacy applications, spreadsheets and other tools.
Review: The overall impression from the top-line findings of this research is that the Environmental Management Software market is still very immature. There’s a long way to go before full function Environmental Management software is widely deployed. And while compliance may not be the number one issue for some multinationals, national compliance legislation will no doubt continue to be a major market driver in the coming years.
The current headline suppliers are long-established players, including both specialist companies, such as Enablon, and corporate software suppliers that have adapted to customer demands, which is SAP’s strength. But there will continue to be a plethora of local players, often only providing partial solutions but responding to local needs, particularly for customers that only have a national business.