Stakeholder Engagement

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Stakeholder Engagement

We approach stakeholder engagement as an important extension of our Customer Satisfaction and Citizenship core values. In 2012, we identified our stakeholders through an extensive analysis of our relationships from three dimensions: power, legitimacy, and urgency. We surveyed stakeholders that possess all three dimensions to determine their priorities. In 2013, we met face-to-face with our stakeholders to gain a better understanding of their priorities. 

Stakeholder Forums

In 2013, Hunter held a series of facilitated discussions with stakeholders from across the United States. Our goal was to understand what drives their priorities and gather their thoughts on our sustainability performance. This way, we can align our efforts with their expectations. Discussions were held with these stakeholder groups:

  • Employees
  • Landscape Architects (Specifiers)
  • Distributors
  • Contractors
  • Municipalities

The forums were facilitated by a neutral party, without Hunter personnel, so our customers could provide their honest thoughts and concerns. In each forum, participants voted for their top sustainability issues of importance out of 11 possible choices. The top three issues voted by the group where then discussed. Below are the results:

 
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Synopsis of Top Issues Discussed

WATER 
Employees think Hunter has a responsibility to promote water conservation through the development of water-efficient products. Additionally, regional droughts and the increasing cost of water will create more demand for efficient irrigation products, putting Hunter in a position to make a positive impact.

Distributors think the timing is right for Hunter to position itself as a leader in promoting water conservation. This group said that Hunter is known to “practice what it preaches” because of its commitment to conservation.

Municipalities have deep concern about water scarcity, drought, and the rising cost of water. They are looking to vendors to develop new ways to be efficient with water use. Stakeholders in this group said they see a huge gap in the public’s education and knowledge about water conservation efforts. For example, people are not aware of the major causes of water waste; water-saving toilets have received much attention, but have a minimum effect in comparison to the water waste that occurs from poor irrigation practices.

WASTE
Employees want better communication and transparency about Hunter’s waste stream, where waste goes, and what types of waste get recycled. There is a need for better employee training about recycling, and more convenient recycling opportunities.

Distributors shared their concerns about old products ending up in landfills and said they would like to see Hunter work with others manufacturers to develop a solution.

HUNTER ECONOMIC PERFORMANCE

Landscape Architects ranked Hunter’s strong economic performance as a top priority because it means Hunter will continue to invest in R&D/Innovation, and they want to see Hunter pushing the industry forward. In addition, they feel that economic performance is linked to quality products and they want to be sure that Hunter continues to produce quality products.

Contractors want to see Hunter in good economic standing because it affects the prices of the products they buy from Hunter. Contractors also want Hunter’s economic performance to be strong enough so that they have money to invest in R&D and stay ahead of the curve, and able to provide product support.

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Looking Forward

Overall, our stakeholders said they like our Corporate Social Responsibility Report and appreciate being involved and asked for their input. External stakeholders suggested that Hunter do more to promote our report through messages on packages, in the catalog, and through distributors.

As our sustainability efforts evolve, we will continue to gather input via the two-way discussion to help define our sustainability roadmap and better understand the issues that are important to our stakeholders.

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