SR strategy formulation and implementation
We actively engage with our clients in formulating Corporate Social Responsibility Strategies and policies related to sustainability, CSR reporting, anti bribery and anti corruption issues and align these with existing values, taking into account their specific needs and objectives and enable them to grasp the competitive advantage that CSR can provide for their business goals.
Different companies may face different stages of awareness on CSR. This, together with the particularities of their business will determine the content of the strategy: some may decide to adopt a "minimum necessary" stance while others may engage in strategic priorities into particular areas. Nevertheless, a good CSR strategy:
- Sets the overall direction for where the firm wishes to go in its CSR work
- Determines specific priority areas
- Establishes immediate next steps.
The process of formulating and implementing a CSR strategy starts with a 360° analysis of the current business: we review the vision, values and impacts the business generates on its employees, stakeholders, suppliers, clients and communities, we look at the management and operational practices and the way performances are defined, we conduct a thorough gap analysis, equally look at the strengths and weaknesses of the organization.
We continue our assessment by expanding it to the practices specific to the industry the business belongs to, identifying the right benchmark, basically researching what others from the same or similar industries are doing. We also look at the best practices, norms and guidelines promoted by various international ruling bodies.
Further, we focus on defining CSR targets which once achieved, bring quantifiable improvements to the business performance, profitability, management practices and corporate governance, reputation and organizational transparency, thus safeguarding the company's viability in the long term.
Finally we devise and propose the client a specially made CSR policy, strategy and implementation plan that are individualized to reflect the business, its stakeholders, environment and industry.
Throughout the entire assessment and strategy creation process we take active steps in building on going support from the Board of Directors and line managers. At the same time, we embrace a mentoring and coaching approach with the client staff assigned to our team of consultants, in order to speed up the know how transfer.
The deliverable to the client is a comprehensive report that beside presenting the CSR policy, strategy and implementation, also presents the findings made through our research, the gap analysis results, how the CSR strategy aligns with the general business strategy of the company and how it integrates with every corporate area (governance, finance, operations, R&D, marketing and sales, etc), presents the benchmark results and makes recommendations for further CSR capacity building within the client team, proposes examples of CSR programs to be developed and KPI's to measure the effectiveness of these CSR programs.
The comprehensive ISO 26000 CSR standard, recently launched, guides our work on developing CSR strategies, policies and action plans. By applying the ISO 26000 CSR standard not only that we draw on the best social responsibility practices developed in the public and private sector but we also ensure that the responsibility practices that we develop on behalf of our clients will be consistent with most relevant declarations and conventions by the United Nations and its constituents, particularly the International Labor Organization (ILO), by the United Nations Global Compact Office, OECD and by GRI.
The areas of concern for the CSR strategies, policies and action plans we propose are:
Human Rights: human rights risk situations, avoidance of complicity, resolving grievances, discrimination and vulnerable groups (forced labor and child labor), civil and political rights, economic, social and cultural rights, fundamental principles and rights at work
Labor Practices: employment relations, labor relations, working and social conditions, health and safety at work, social dialogue, career development and training, Remuneration system.
Environment prevention of pollution, sustainable resources use, climate change mitigation and adaptation, protection of environment, biodiversity and restoration of natural habitats, incorporation of environmental considerations into the manufacturing and distribution of products, and into their use and disposal.
Fair operating practices: anti-corruption, responsible political involvement, fair competition, promoting social responsibility in the value chain, respect for property rights
Consumer issues: fair marketing, factual and unbiased information and fair contractual practices, protecting consumers' health and safety, sustainable consumption, consumer service, support, and complaint and dispute resolution, consumer data protection and privacy, access to essential services, education and awareness
Community involvement and development: impacts on local communities, community involvement, education and culture, employment creation and skills development, technology development and access, wealth and income creation, social investment
Corporate Governance: Board of Directors, audit and internal controls, treatment of shareholders, executive remuneration
Based on the ISO 26000 CSR standard, we have developed a specialized software - The CSR Toolkit - that sets the roadmap towards a professional CSR strategy. We conduct our assignments using this step by step guide and together with the final report our clients are also provided with this software for further use. The application has a friendly tutorial and is easy to use as a self assessment and improvement tool. However, it does not replace the case sensitivity and balance of experienced consultants.
Moreover, from our perspective, for the CSR policy to be a living document rather than sitting on a shelf, it has to be turned into programs and activities, trainings and events expressing organization's interest and commitment for managing its impacts on society and answering the expectations of its stakeholders.
Therefore, for this particular type of assignments, along with the CSR Toolkit we propose our clients additional assistance for CSR programs design, implementation and monitoring, KPI definition and measurement and CSR reporting along with a 2 year period of access to our ad-hoc support service by which against a monthly subscription at preferential rates your are entitled to up to 16 hours of remote assistance each month for instant queries or ad-hoc advice.