Automating workflow for Robertson


Robertson are one of the largest family-owned construction, infrastructure and support services businesses in the UK. They invest, develop, construct and maintain across the whole built environment. Social, economic and environmental responsibility is crucial to Robertson’s success, and to continued business sustainability.

The Responsible Business 2030 strategy is delivering this sustainable future. Having made significant reductions in their carbon intensity over the last 12 years Robertson was one of the first UK businesses in the built environment to achieve carbon neutrality.

They have built upon that and become ‘climate positive’, maintaining their 2019–2020 level of offsetting, continuing to reduce emissions and offsetting more emissions than they generate.

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SmartWaste is the leading environmental social and governance (ESG) platform for the built environment. It supports net zero carbon, circularity or social value objectives and captures biodiversity, energy, materials, transport, waste and water data.

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Robertson first adopted SmartWaste in 2017, at which time they were managing a large waste supply chain of over 80 waste management companies across their projects through Scotland and Northern England.

It became apparent that waste reporting across this volume of sites and multiple waste contractors was incredibly complex and varied, inconsistent and challenging to manage.


Sites were receiving data in a myriad of reporting formats which made managing waste difficult and reporting on it at the group level virtually impossible.

Our purpose is to assure a sustainable future, and our activity on site accounts for a significant proportion of our environmental impact. We’re already a climate positive business, which was a significant target in our Responsible Business 2030 strategy and utilise SmartWaste to track performance and continually highlight opportunities for improvement.

With SmartWaste, we have found it easier to manage our levels of waste data recording across our business units and projects. Implementing the API we have saved a considerable amount of staff resource and time which has been  allocated to other important site activities. We are continuing to work with BRE to further develop the automation of data to streamline our processes.

Graeme Hannah, Head of Sustainability, Robertson Group


Major successes

The initial solution, by implementing SmartWaste, brought far greater consistency by capturing all waste data from 80+ waste management contractors all under the same reporting platform. However, this still required Robertson site employees to spend time and effort in pulling together waste data from multiple contractors into the online SmartWaste platform.

While the process above was a great improvement on the previous system, Robertson really wanted to automate the entire process of waste data capture in SmartWaste without the need for any manual data entry. SmartWaste introduced a solution and Robertson were the first company in the UK to adopt and use the SmartWaste API (Application Programme Interface). The API allows for the seamless transfer of waste data directly from a waste contractor’s own reporting system into SmartWaste without the need for any manual intervention.


  • 12 Waste management contractors are using the API to insert data
  • Enhances waste compliance and record keeping for client Duty of Care requirements
  • Improves data accuracy and integrity

Next steps

Waste contractors are actively engaged and have really
embraced the idea of using the API to provide value-added waste reporting services to their clients. It benefits both as a waste contractor/broker, but most importantly of all provides the end client, Robertson, with reliable instant waste reporting without the need for any manual intervention or time spent by site staff. It is greatly enhancing the accuracy of the waste data captured on site, as well as its timeliness.

The API also provides a mechanism for contractors to capture all essential records including relevant waste carrier and site licences for Duty of Care compliance for instant access and retrieval by the end client.

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