Criteria and indicators to assess sustainability have been desingned to promote the implementation of sustainable forest management. However, very few forest managers are currently using this tool. To transform C&I into practicable tool for monitoring and auditing forest management, an intensive process for making it operational is necessary. Specifity, practicability and validity of the sets have to be guaranteed, but most importantly is the definition of verifiers and methodologies for their assessment in the field. This process has to consider the specific demands and competence of the potential clients. A C&I based tool for auto-monitoring forest operations is presented as an example for preparing and making operational C&I for practical use. A test in two forest management units located in the Eastern Amazon region of Brazil confirmed the technical-financial viability of the systematic monitoring of sustainability by forest enterprises. To successfully respond to the new challenge of putting C&I into practice, an improved collaboration between specialists in the economic, technical and social areas is required, who should be adequately trained in issues related to communication and empirical research.