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Changes to the EcoVadis Medals Programme

Are you aware that EcoVadis has changed its methodology in how 360° watch findings are categorised and that this affects medal recognition?

If not, we will summarise it for you below.

EcoVadis implemented the following changes to their Medals Programme on January 1, 2023.

According to EcoVadis, the changes were “necessary to retain the quality and integrity of their Medals Programme”.  The changes include

  1. 1. For each of the models, the score thresholds were updated to align to the percentiles (as seen above). Note: Percentile rank is calculated across all companies in all industries, not per industry
  1. 2. The minimum theme score required to earn a medal was increased from 25 to 30 for the Environmental, Labor, and Ethics themes. The minimum theme score for the Sustainable Procurement theme remained at 25.
  1. 3. EcoVadis also tightened the eligibility restrictions for the 360° Watch in 2023. To be eligible for a medal, a company must not have a severe (SEV) 360° Watch finding in a theme or a major (MAJ) finding in 2 or more themes.The following findings are also considered equivalent to a severe or major finding:
      • More than 5 major (MAJ) findings in any single theme is considered a severe finding.
      • More than 25 minor (MIN) findings in any single theme is considered a severe finding.
      • 2 or more themes with at least 5 minor (MIN) findings in each is considered a major finding.

    Note: The impact of the 360° Watch Findings on medal ineligibility is 3 years for the  Environment, Labor & Human Rights, and Sustainable Procurement themes and 5 years for the Ethics theme.

EcoVadis confirmed they continue to review their medal methodology to ensure that it aligns with emerging global regulations, market maturity, and new frameworks. Because of the change in market dynamics with new and more stringent regulations coming into play every day, an increase in greenwashing accusations, and growing pressure from investors and customers,  they have decided to further tighten the eligibility criteria in 2024 to maintain “the integrity of their programme” and will be sharing the details soon. Based on these changes, EcoVadis will recommend that requesting customers organise their programme management based on scores versus medals.

Although medals are a tool to showcase achievements, it is important to remember that it measures relative performance versus the entire pool of companies within the EcoVadis-rated network that undergo a sustainability assessment. The EcoVadis score, on the other hand, helps situate the company’s overall sustainability performance in absolute terms. When it comes to working on sustainability improvements, we really need to focus on the result of the assessment as outlined in detail in the scorecard (see also the action dashboard providing an overview on prevalent findings per topic, available to all TfS members). The medal is just an add-on that gives you a link to the 360° watch. Hence, as the findings of the 360° watch remain on the records for 5 years, it will not be easy to regain a medal only after one year. One more reason to focus on results and work on improvement areas.

Further details on the 2023 Medals Program are found here:

Author: Sabine Zalinger, Wacker, Chair TfS Work Stream 2 “TfS Assessments”

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