Brands and Corporate Social Responsibility - (Other Industries Excluding Financial Services)
LEGO uses videos to highlight the ways the company practices CSR, and so do Google, Microsoft, and Ben & Jerry. In Disney's 2017 CSR update, they provide the majority of information through infographics. BMW strives to set high standards for their employees in order to foster environmental change, corporate giving, and to maintain a diverse workforce. In their report, they state that their philanthropy efforts have surpassed $36 million.
We were able to identify two precompiled lists of brands with the best CSR initiatives based on their level of success and popularity. These brands are also in the news a lot. From the precompiled lists, we selected the seven brands that come up the most when searching for the term CSR. We defined brands as companies with products and services to offer. Most of these companies have CSR annual reports with infographics and other visual aids highlighting current and future initiatives. In terms of metrics, all seven companies also have clear goals and metrics they use, which we listed below.
LEGO is one of the most successful companies regarding CSR. LEGO is currently undertaking an ambitious array of sustainable goals for the company. They are also developing key strategic partnerships with non-profits such as the World Wildlife Fund. Their partnership with the World Wildlife Fund is focused on Lego’s Sustainable Materials Center, which is projected to recruit over 100 employees in an effort to put into place sustainable alternatives to existing materials by 2030. LEGO is also focused on launching a global initiative called Build the Change, "which was inspired in part by letters the company receives from children excited to share their ideas, many of which involve environmental and animal welfare".
When it comes to the metrics LEGO is using, they note they have achieved their ambition to balance 100% of their energy use with energy from renewable sources. They also made a long-term commitment to investing $150 million to "identify and implement even more sustainable raw materials and packaging solutions by 2030".
LEGO is using videos to highlight the ways the company practices CSR.
In one such video, they mention 100% of the energy used for LEGO bricks is sourced from renewable sources.
In another video, LEGO is highlighting one of their CSR initiatives called Build the Change, which is an event where LEGO inspires kids to use their imagination in a fun, but responsible context. They also aim to foster the children's creativity and promote social interaction.
Microsoft has many categories when it comes to their CSR initiatives. Some of the most prominent are:
1. Microsoft Supporting Local Communities
2. Microsoft Educating and Empowering Workers
3. Labor and Human Rights at Microsoft
4. Employee Health and Safety at Microsoft
5. Microsoft and Gender Equality and Minorities
6. Energy Consumption by Microsoft
7. Carbon Emissions by Microsoft
Annually, Microsoft publishes a Corporate Social Responsibility report where they list current and future initiatives. They also provide metrics details. An example of metrics from the report: "We’re partnering with telecommunications companies through our Rural Airband Initiative to bring broadband connectivity to 2 million people in rural America by 2022."
Microsoft chooses to highlight how their employees are contributing to their CSR initiatives by creating videos. They also publish infographics which inform the public about their biggest achievements. For 2017, Microsoft says they funded 18,000 nonprofits, and raise $125 million. 71% of employees of Microsoft donated their time and money, and a total of 570,000 hours were donated.
At Disney, corporate social responsibility refers to the companies' array of efforts to conduct Disney business and create Disney products in an ethical manner. The company also aims to "provide comfort, happiness, and inspiration to families around the world". CSR initiatives are divided into the environment and philanthropy. Disney publishes an annual report on their CSR initiatives.
In Disney's 2017 CSR update, they provide the majority of information through infographics. They divide their report into Targets/ Metrics, Environmental Stewardship, Healthy Living, Workplace Practices, and Strategic Philanthropy & Community Engagement. For example, their performance targets which can be seen as metrics are segmented into environment, volunteer hours, and healthy living. They state that when it comes to emissions, they aim to reduce net emissions by 50% from 2012 total levels by 2020. They also state that in 2017 they reduced their net emissions by 41% from 2012 levels.
Panera Bread publishes their Responsibility Report every two years, and the last one was published in 2016. Some key accomplishments since the last report are:
"1. Achieving 100% clean food
2. Donating more than $100 million each year to help fight food insecurity through Panera’s Day-End Dough-Nation™ program.
3. Operating Panera Cares nonprofit community cafes aimed at addressing food insecurity."
They choose to showcase their goals, metrics, and accomplishments through infographics. In a 91-page report, they give a deep dive of all three.
BEN & JERRY
Ben & Jerry is a certified B Corporation, which is known as the highest standard for SCR: "B Corps are a new type of corporation that uses the power of business to solve social and environmental problems".
When it comes to metrics, Ben & Jerrys' main goal is to keep their products free of GMO. Ben & Jerry’s mission statement when it comes to CSR is broken down into three segments: product, economic, and social. The social goal is aimed towards the company operating in innovative ways to increase equity and quality of life for the whole world. One example of Ben & Jerrys promoting their social goal is the Caring Dairy program, which "incentivizes milk suppliers to make more environmentally sustainable and animal-friendly choices by ranking them in a tiered system and paying higher-ranking suppliers more".
When it comes to visual formats, Ben & Jerry is mostly focused on producing videos, such as a number of different ones for the Climate Justice that promote clean energy.
Targeted, sustainable commitment is the main part of the BMW Group’s CSR identity. BMW is actively committed to improving sustainability on a global level by leveraging their core expertise to achieve the biggest long-term impact. BMW contributes financial resources, and also share their know-how. In their CSR report, they state they work closely with different partners to create possible solutions.
When it comes to metrics, BMW strives to set high standards for their employees in order to foster environmental change, corporate giving, and to maintain a diverse workforce. In their report, they state that their philanthropy efforts have surpassed $36 million. Out of that number, 47% went to education, 35% to the community, and 18% to the arts.
BMW chooses to report their CSR efforts through videos in which they point out their social responsibility efforts, such as adapting to the working conditions for an aging workforce, and the use of renewable energy. They also use infographics to highlight BMW's CSR strategies, key metrics, and programs and initiatives.
Google publishes an environmental report that states the details of Google's CSR programs and initiatives. In this report, they provide data on Google's energy and water consumption, as well as their efforts to reduce waste and increase recycling.
Google's 2017 Environmental report shows different metrics they use, such as:
1. Capturing value from waste in upstate New York.
2. Using oceans of data and tracking illegal fishing over 1.4 billion square miles.
3. Using 100% renewable energy and how Google buys renewable energy.
Apart from publishing a report, Google also uses videos as the primary visual format for showcasing their CSR efforts, such as Google's Windmill and renewable energy partnerships.
Lego, Microsoft, Google, Walt Disney, BMW, Panera Bread, and Ben & Jerrys are the most successful with corporate social responsibility.