With the rise of Corporate Social Responsibility as a priority over the last few years, Resource Manager Alison Young explores the reasons why potential employees, and even interims, should consider a companies CSR strategy.

Corporate Social Responsibility is generally used as a tool by larger companies to attract clients and ‘give back to the community’. Increasingly however, it is something all size organisations are becoming involved in as it can be a way to gain new business and attract new candidates - which in a recovering and competitive market can be challenging. However, this can be for interim employees as well as permanent, and it is something all companies are starting to take seriously.

Corporate Social Responsibility Pays Off

The Nielsen Global Survey on Corporate Social Responsibility* has been released recently and the results show that CSR pays off from a marketing and sales perspective. The number of consumers willing to pay more for goods and services from companies engaged in corporate social responsibility has increased to 50% globally. Increases were measured across both sexes and all age groups, with respondents aged 30 and under emerging as the most likely to spend more. The rate among consumers aged 40-44 also increased to 50%, from 38% in 2011.

Candidate Attraction

Corporate social responsibility is also something that can attract new employees to an organisation and make it a better place to work, no matter what type of business you are. For example, here at Alium, as well as our environmental and recycling commitments, which are a key part of any CSR programme, we also support the medical charity Operation Smilethrough various events and donations. But it is not just charitable and environmental aspects that candidates should look for. Increasingly, both interim and permanent applicants are having to consider the culture of a workplace before joining it and CSR can be a key part of this.

Cultural Fit

Although a candidate can look good on paper, their cultural fit and personality are all important and this can affected greatly by the environment of the organisation. The recent Happiness Report from the ONS showed that happiness has increased modestly throughout the UK, linked to positive events and well being. This is the same in organisations. Any company that invests time to ensure it’s employees are happy and healthy (for example, we have initiated a weekly fruit basket and nutrition tips to encourage healthy eating in our office) is going someway to instilling a positive culture which makes it easier for new employees, permanent or otherwise, to engage and achieve.

Remember, interim or permanent, you generally spend more time at work than anywhere else, so making it the best environment possible, is essential to organisational success.

What are your views on Corporate Social Responsibility? Do you consider it before taking on a role in a company or do you find it irrelevant?
*The Nielsen survey was conducted between February and March 2013 and surveyed more than 29,000 online consumers in 58 countries.

photo credit:Geralt cc

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