Why You Should Take Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Seriously in 2023

Corporate Social Responsibility. It’s become something of a buzz term in recent years. But it’s not a concept that will be washed away by another new trend or niche, CSR is here to stay.

In this blog, we’ll shine a light on:

  • Why CSR should be a priority in your business
  • The importance of CSR in the workplace
  • The benefits associated with CSR

What is CSR?

CSR is a business model that seeks to make a company more accountable for its actions. The goal of which is to enhance, rather than hinder society. This may be from an environmental, economic, philanthropic, social, or ethical point of view to name a few.

More specific policies include but are not limited to:

  • Anti-slavery
  • Recruitment
  • Health & Safety
  • Wellbeing
  • Equality and diversity
  • Data protection

The list goes on.

What is important to note is that CSR policies aim to promote ethical business practices without sacrificing profit. The potential risk of profit reduction due to CSR commitments that many business owners have been worried about in the past should no longer be a concern, and we are here to explain why.

The Importance of CSR in the Workplace

For an organisation to exist, grow and thrive, it must take resources from society, people, and the planet.

So, it seems only fair to make an effort to give back to these entities that we rely on so heavily. This is not only to ensure your growth but also to allow future generations of business leaders to be able to follow in your footsteps.

However, when considered at an internal level, workplace CSR is important for several reasons, all of which stem from the creation of a culture to be proud of.

By implementing internal CSR measures that make them better employers, businesses can foster a cultural framework that will make their place of work a place where people want to be. By showing that you care about your employees, whether through diversity, equity, and inclusion policies, considered recruitment processes, health, safety, and wellbeing protocols will be the desired working environment for all.

Not only will this cultivate a space where employees want to work hard and thrive, but it will tempt others to take a slice of the pie… it’s a win, win, right?

What about the wider benefits?

Whilst workplace culture is likely to benefit from CSR initiatives, there are many, wider benefits that their implementation can bring to your business.

Improving brand positioning

Take two identical products. For example, two white t-shirts.

Their price, quality, sizing, and materials are both the same – they are identical. But the t-shirt from Company A has been made from sustainable materials, in a factory with highly regulated and fair working conditions, which emits next to no emissions.

As for Company B, they are quite the opposite. Which one are you likely to choose?

By ensuring corporate social responsibility in the production of their product, Company A has gained a competitive advantage that means more consumers will purchase their product. The company is differentiated, the brand is elevated, the stakeholders are happy, and the planet is thankful.

We imagine even if Company A’s t-shirt was a couple of quid more expensive than Company B’s, then the average consumer is still likely to be swayed by the ethics of Company A.

Attracting the next generation of talent

64% of millennials won’t take a role if the employer doesn’t have a strong CSR policy.

Gen-Z is the first generation to prioritise purpose over salary.

Priorities are shifting. The talent breaking through now is increasingly concerned with how their employers run their businesses, not just about how much money may go into their back pockets each month.

Yes, there exists younger generations who don’t concern themselves with CSR as much as others, but in a world with increasing reliance on the goodness of people, are those chasing money and not much else the ones you want to surround yourself with?

Mitigating risk

Look, we don’t want to tell you to invest in CSR just to avoid trouble later down the road, but we cannot ignore the fact that unethical business practices come with consequences. Environmental ignorance, employee discrimination, financial mismanagement… all these things can come back to bite you in the behind.

This can take the form of fines, lawsuits, bad press, and litigation. Not things you want to be dealing with when you have a business to run.

Instead, implement a CSR policy that does more than just cover your back, but makes the world around you a better place.

Authenticity is everything

It’s easy to focus on the internal benefits that CSR policies bring, it’s also important to focus on the bigger and somewhat less selfish picture. Businesses have an increasing duty to act with corporate social responsibility. It’s no longer good enough to argue that business is about profit and nothing else. So, while having a strong CSR strategy in place is beneficial for your company, perhaps take the time to think about how people and the planet can be enhanced by your corporate social responsibility policies. Do good because you want to, not because you feel you need to.

By taking an authentic and meaningful approach to your CSR model, you will achieve so much more, not only for your business and its people but for the community and environment around you.

Be a force for good

At Tercus, we can help shape your CSR model to suit your needs. We can aid the planning and implementation of policies that will make your business a better place to work, and a place that will benefit the world around it.

We are here to take the stress of the process away. Our dedicated team of HR professionals is on hand to shape a CSR strategy that is moulded to your business, ensuring authenticity and professionalism at all stages. Let us take the pressure off to let you focus on the rest.

For support on the creation of a tailor-made corporate social responsibility model set to better your business, and the planet, get in touch today.