Corporate Sustainability Report 2016

Corporate Sustainability Report 2016

For more than a century, Steelcase has believed in the power of people. Every day, in locations around the globe, we work to unlock human promise and create meaningful, lasting change.

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Our Sustainability Promise

Sustainability at Steelcase is about people. It’s about creating and supporting the economic, environmental and social conditions that allow people and communities to reach their full potential.

Sustainability at Steelcase

Our Vision
Progress + Goals
Corporate Sustainability Report

Our Vision

Our Vision

Bringing Lasting Value

Our sustainability vision is clear: bring lasting value to our customers, employees, shareholders, partners, communities and the environment.

We do this by…

  • Designing products and solutions to benefit people
  • Consulting with customers to help meet sustainability goals
  • Collaborating with key partners to further the science and practice of sustainability
  • Operating in a socially responsible way
  • Increasing expectations of our supply chain partners
  • Reporting global metrics

Progress + Goals

Progress + Goals

Achieving Results

Careful measurement is key to managing impact. We’re committed to measuring and reporting on our progress in a transparent and authentic way.

This is a snapshot of some of the goals we’re reaching for and progress we’ve made over the last few years:

  • Investing in Renewable Energy Credits (RECs) equivalent to 100% of our global electricity use
  • $5.9 million donated in 2015
  • Over 38,000 employee volunteer hours in 2015
  • 9.5% reduction in energy use since 2010
  • 44% reduction in waste since 2010
  • 9% reduction in water use since 2010
  • 75% reduction in VOCs since 2010

Find out more

Corporate Sustainability Report

Corporate Sustainability Report

Reporting Our Progress

True progress takes continuous and coordinated efforts to create the economic, environmental and social conditions that allow people and communities to thrive. We have strong beliefs that guide us, and we’re putting our beliefs into action.

Every day, in every decision, we work hard to deliver on our purpose and create real world results.

We share these results in an authentic and transparent way in our annual Corporate Sustainability Report.

View Corporate Sustainability Report

Download a Printable Version

Download the Executive Summary

Listen to our new podcast about worker engagement and the role of the workplace with Dr Craig Knight, Chartered Psychologist and Honorary Research Fellow at the University of Exeter.

Listen to the podcast


Materials Chemistry
Life Cycle Thinking + Assessments
End of Use + Recycling
Certificates + Profiles



Designing for Sustainability

We believe the only way to provide the best office furniture solutions is to ensure they’re the best products for the world. That’s why every step of the way – through design, manufacturing, delivery and product lifecycle – we consider the impact of our work on people and on the environment and uncover opportunities to make things better.

Materials Chemistry

Materials Chemistry

Knowing. Acting. Solving.

We take a comprehensive approach to understanding what goes into our products we’re both precautionary and proactive.

As a leader in our industry, our materials chemistry practice assesses materials to understand their potential impacts on human and environmental health. To date, we have assessed over 1,600 materials. We are actively working with our supply chain to eliminate and phase out materials of concern and to develop suitable alternatives where they may not yet exist.

Life Cycle Thinking + Assessments

Life Cycle Thinking + Assessments

Turning Insights into Action

We concentrate our efforts on understanding the life cycle impacts of our products – from materials extraction, production, transport, use and reuse, through the end of life. These efforts continue to yield deep insights that influence every facet of our operation.

We contribute to the growing body of research around social impact life cycle assessments. We also bridge research with practical realities, creating actionable practices and standards.

Steelcase Corporate Sustainability Report

End of Use + Recycling

End of Use + Recycling

Closing the Loop

Good design and choosing the right materials can ensure a product will be desirable and have a long life. It also can ensure the product can be recycled. Our products are designed for easy disassembly, allowing pieces to be separated easily and quickly for replacement or recycling.

Our products are built to last; sometimes they outlast customer needs.Therefore, we offer multiple programs to extend a product’s lifespan through reuse and recycling, refurbishing and donating. These end of use services keep furniture out of landfills, provide non-profit organizations with needed resources and help customers meet their sustainability goals.

Certificates + Profiles

Certificates + Profiles


Our products carry a number of third-party verified certifications, reflecting our commitment to deliver on our promises.

These certification programs include:

  • BIFMA level®
  • Blauer Engel
  • China Environmental Label
  • Cradle to Cradle™
  • EU Ecolabel (European Flower)
  • FCS® Chain of Custody
  • NF Environnement
  • PEFC™
  • Oeko Tex®
  • SCS Indoor Advantage™

Product Environmental Profiles (PEPs)*

PEPs answers questions such as:

  • How much recycled content is used in a product?
  • What is its recyclability?
  • What is the product’s potential for LEED contribution?
  • What certifications are available?

*PEPs are not available for all products globally

Find certificates, Product Environmental Profiles, and additional sustainability information in the Resource Center.

Explore Resource Center for Sustainability Information.

Insights + Strategies

People + Purpose

Customers often turn to us to do more than provide furniture for workspaces. We’ve helped optimize real estate and create spaces that support employee wellbeing. And though these are important elements of any workspace, we’re looking ahead and shifting the conversation to something larger – the promise of people. Today, we’re focusing on helping customers create spaces designed to accomplish an array of goals.

Find out more

Recycle and resuse

End of Use Strategies

Every year, we extend the useful life of thousands of products. Through our end of use program, we’re helping businesses dispose of their surplus office furniture in socially, economically and environmentally responsible ways. First, we work with them to understand the situation. Then, with our partners, we present options that meet their goals, whether it’s income, landfill diversion or charitable donation.


Sustainable Procurement Strategies

With products designed to support human and environmental health, and the wellbeing of both people and the planet, we’re providing real value to every purchase. With our suite of tools, we help our customers understand their impacts, from real estate to furnishings, and help them make more informed, more responsible decisions.

Employee Wellbeing

We use our insights to create workspaces that holistically address the wellbeing and productivity of our customers’ employees and positively influence the way they feel and how they perform. Our innovative products and applications provide ergonomic support, encourage movement and avoid materials of concern to support the physical, mental and social wellbeing of people.

Our Promises


Helping our customers succeed in their business and meet their sustainability goals is priority number one at Steelcase. We deliver on that commitment with research-backed strategies, innovative end of use solutions, a robust supply chain, and products that help unlock the promise of our customers’ employees.



We value our global relationships, sharing our resources, talents, materials and leadership to tackle entrenched issues like education and environment. Change happens on the local level, and we’re working hard to make a difference for individuals, communities and all of humankind.


Creating lasting change takes a committed team, and we’re fortunate to work with some of the finest partners in the industry. From universities to suppliers, dealers to community organizations, we’re forging a more innovative, sustainable future through collaboration.



We honor the unique talents, skills and perspectives of our employees, knowing full well that their contributions are what propel us. We value the whole person, and seek to help each employee fulfill their highest potential through policies, practices and honest engagement.


Simply complying with standards isn’t enough anymore. We’re working to conserve more, use less, find better ways, source more responsible materials, and leave a legacy of positive change that benefits us all.



We’re taking a hard look at our actions, putting sustainability at the center of the decision wheel, and implementing organizational change to be the most economically, socially and environmentally responsible company we can be.

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WEEE (Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment)

Steelcase complies with the WEEE Directive
WEEE compliance country list

Steelcase complies with the WEEE Directive

Steelcase complies with the WEEE Directive

Historic WEEE

Steelcase is required to provide arrangements for the treatment, recycling and recovery of old equipment that your new purchase replaces, on a one-for-one, like-for-like basis. Equipment purchased before August, 2005 is considered Historic WEEE.


Steelcase is also required to provide arrangements for the treatment, recycling and recovery of any new electrical and electronic equipment that you buy from Steelcase after August 2005, when that new equipment eventually becomes waste.

Recycling Network

Steelcase has established a recycling contract with the European Advanced Recycling Network (EARN) and will cover any costs of treatment, recycling and recovery of the equipment on arrival at the EARN facility in the UK. All New WEEE that arises from the purchase of Steelcase products is classed as non-hazardous waste. Our customers are responsible for collection and delivery of WEEE to the recycler identified by Steelcase. Please see instructions below to request a pickup.

Which products to return

Please be sure to return only products identified as WEEE, and not furniture or other items that contain no electronics. Recyclers are only equipped to handle WEEE. The product photos above will help identify WEEE items.

WEEE compliance country list

WEEE compliance country list


Under the Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE) Directive and implementing regulations, when customers buy new electrical and electronic equipment from Steelcase they are entitled to:

  • Send old equipment for recycling on a one-for-one, like-for-like basis (this varies depending on the country)
  • Send the new equipment back for recycling when this ultimately becomes waste

Instructions to customers and recyclers/treatment facilities are provided by following the links.

WEEE compliance country list.

Please select the country where your equipment is located

Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Latvia, Liechetenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, United Kindom.

Resources + Contact




Product Documents

Find certificates, Product Environmental Profiles (PEPs), and additional sustainability information, explore the Resource Center.