1.What are the benefits?
Without fail, whether companies are using the scheme internally to assess their practices or to achieve the Mark, they report that it helps them to take a comprehensive inventory of their sustainability practices. The Mark asks about everything from workplace practices to how the company conducts its procurement or manages diverse environmental issues. So, the framework–often for the first time–draws together the HR team, the Facilities Manager and other functions. This means that the company not only gets a clearer picture of where it stands but it now also has an internal management forum to address any gaps. Visibility and a dedicated forum make sustainability easier to plan and manage. Our feedback report provides the basis for next steps.
Recognition also comes in many forms. Internally companies going through the assessment of practices, get an external assessment of where they stand and for several companies, it has had a galvanising effect. It’s the best way to build a CR or sustainability strategy with clear objectives and targets.
Companies also talk about the internal buzz that comes from achieving the Mark. Employees often don’t know how to rank their companies in terms of responsibility. With this standard, they have an external verification for the first time that they work for a company that is paying attention to social and environmental issues.
External recognition comes to the companies that achieve the Mark with the support of our targeted marketing campaigns. Companies are also presented with their certificate at the annual Business in the Community Ireland CEO Forum in front of hundreds of Irish CEOs. External recognition of the scheme and of the company’s achievement is important for the company’s profile but also to help it win business.In a survey of top CEOs in Ireland last year conducted by Amárach, there was a 40% awareness of the the Mark. .
As well as that, the Business Working Responsibly Mark is the only verifiable certification of a company’s responsible and sustainable practices in Ireland.
For that reason, several companies have used it in tendering processes to respond to questions about their sustainability or corporate responsibility practices.
The Mark is designed to reward and complement other standards. It is based on ISO 26000, the global guidance standard on social responsibility.
Points are available to companies that can cite other standards they have achieved. These might relate to workplace, customer care, supply chain management, environmental management and corporate responsibility reporting.
In addition, when it comes to selecting indicators for Business Working Responsibly Mark audit, operations that have already been heavily audited in achieving other standards are taken into consideration.
3. How long does it take or what resources are required?
On average the initial questionnaire inventory can take anything from four weeks to three months. Typically completing the questionnaire involves one person within the organisation inviting relevant experts to input to the questionnaire and ensuring their input is progressing. That person would also be the contact point for the audit arrangements should the company get to that point.
The scheme is a robust assessment of a wide range of a company’s operations. The strength of the scheme is in how comprehensively it examines the company’s operations and it will take effort.
If you are interested in finding our more about the Business Working Responsibly Mark please get in touch with Elise McCarthy on 01 8747232 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
We often run information sessions so please keep an eye on our event calendar.