Privately held businesses are adopting corporate social responsibility policies not just to save the planet but because they are having to in order to survive and prosper, according to the latest Grant Thornton International Business Report (PDF).
Sixty-five percent of PHBs cite recruitment and retention pressures as their main CSR driver, closely followed by cost management concerns (63%), suggesting that controlling costs is not only good for business but also good for business ethics.
While multinational companies may engage in CSR activities to manage their reputation, PHBs are ignoring expensive PR campaigns and focusing on the basics – making themselves more attractive as employers and suppliers. Seventy-one percent actively promote workforce health, 64 percent promote equality and diversity and 62 percent have flexible working practices, benefits that have previously been associated with large employers.
These statistics show that the individual’s choice in where they are employed is influencing company behaviour at PHB level. As significantly, 56 percent of PHBs report having formally adopted transparent CSR policies, a measure of the influence companies higher up the supply chain are having on potential suppliers.
The report also shows that improved waste management and energy efficiency are strongly correlated.