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Social Responsibility

Posted on October 18, 2016

A new report finds that companies are making social responsibility a key part of their business strategies. Interestingly, it seems that their employees are helping to drive this view. The report, from CECP and The Conference Board, surveyed 272 companies to find out how they are aligning financial performance with social responsibility. Here are some key findings:

  • Business performance is tied to social responsibility: Companies that increased total giving by at least 10% between 2013 and 2015 saw increases in median giving as a percentage of revenue and pre-tax profit, as opposed to all other companies that instead saw decreases in both metrics.
  • Companies with a stronger sense of purpose also had stronger financial and Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) metrics.
  • Bigger Budgets: Total giving grew slightly with nearly half (47%) of companies in a three-year matched set between 2013 and 2015 reporting an increase in median total giving—by 1%.
  • Elevation of roles and responsibilities: With companies seeing the bottom-line benefits of adding resources to the community engagement office, corporate giving teams are not only expanding (full-time equivalent employees rose 3% from 2013 to 2015), but their prominence within the company is rising, with 29% of teams reporting closer alignment with the CEO’s office.
  • Further, teams are being called on to share materially significant data: 56% of companies say their corporate citizenship department provided ESG information to a particular investor or the company’s investor relations department.
  • Employees and customers seeking out new ways to give back through the company and the brand: Employee volunteer participation rate with their company’s community efforts continued to rise to 33% in 2015 from 28% in 2013.
  • Additionally, about half of companies saw building trust with consumers and other stakeholders as a goal of their societal engagement programs.
  • Fifty-five percent of companies used increased trust (e.g., Edelman Trust Barometer, Nielsen Global Consumer Confidence Survey, etc.) as a benchmark of success for their community investments.͟

You can find out more at http://www.conference-board.org.

This report reinforces a growing sense that corporate social responsibility has become more than PR window dressing. For many companies it has become an essential part of strategies. Here at West Virginia Central Credit Union, social responsibility has always been at our core. It is part of our credit union difference!