When it comes to your organisation’s environmental, social, and governance disclosures, despite what it feels like at times, it doesn’t need to be a solo journey.
Instead of being every man for himself, prioritising social value is about creating a more profitable and prosperous world for all. And the sooner organisations and communities start pulling together to share resources, lessons, and ideas, the sooner we’ll see more robust, industry-standard processes across the board.
With this in mind, we’re breaking down four invaluable resources you might be overlooking when it comes to your social value.
Charities and pro-social organisations are the perfect partners for developing your social value strategy. They have their ear to the ground, dealing with your intended beneficiaries and the local area directly.
The future of business is about demonstrating positive social change alongside profits. Whether it’s sharing knowledge, experience, or perspectives, there’s a lot to gain from forging long-term relationships with non-profit organisations who mirror your values and know the landscape.
Liaising with these organisations can elevate your efforts to ensure the best possible outcomes are achieved. They can help ensure beneficiary needs are properly prioritised and fully integrated into your organisation’s long-term strategies.
They’re worth consulting at all stages of your initiatives, projects, or contracts, too. They can provide inspiration and ideas when just getting started, as well as keep your priorities in line as a project evolves and changes over its duration.
💡 Top tip: These partnerships can be especially impactful when there’s an overlap between a charity’s beneficiaries and your own staff. For example, partnering with an LGBTQ+ charity when you know you have LGBTQ+ staff or allies across your organisation. Similarly, you can let your workforce guide your choices of charitable partners, improving their engagement with future efforts.
We know a 45-page document isn’t the kind of light reading you can easily slip into your daily to-do list. But so much valuable insight and advice can be found in government documents and frameworks.
Let’s take the government’s new social value model as an example. PPN 06/20 gave a topline overview of January 2021’s procurement changes and new social value themes. But it didn’t give specific examples of what putting the model into practice might look like.
Whereas this document was packed with all the information a business could possibly need to get started with integrating the government’s five pillars. By spending more time reading the guidance, you would be far better placed to make the necessary changes.
As an organisation, You’ll have your own unique priorities and passions, which should definitely be explored and integrated into your approach. But by following the wider trajectory of the government, you make your social value journey far more manageable and streamlined.
You benefit from the peace of mind that you’re pulling in the same direction as everyone else. That you’re contributing to global goals and targets. And that any future legislation won’t creep up on you and catch you off guard.
Hearing from those you’re trying to help is critical to making the most of your efforts. Are you holding focus groups to hear straight from local residents and your intended beneficiaries?
While pro-social organisations can help with certain subsections of your stakeholders, you really can’t beat direct engagement and discussion. Doing this systematically and making it an embedded part of your process ensures you can quickly pick up on any positive progress and consistently realign your approach to better meet the needs of your beneficiaries.
You may have a loose idea of what your local area needs. But why would you ever want to base your time and resources on a loose idea? Stakeholders deserve to participate and shape the initiatives that set out to make their lives better. And it’s your job to give them that voice.
💡 Top tip: You want to be using these stakeholder discussions to identify new avenues of exploration, uncover efforts that aren’t meeting the mark – or might be having adverse effects – and to consistently realign your organisation’s priorities with your beneficiaries in mind.
Are you talking to other organisations in your industry? It sounds controversial, we know. But while you might be competing with other businesses, your social value instantly puts you on the same team.
When it comes to social value, our goals are all the same: to leave the world in a better place than we found it. And by opening up conversations across industries, we unite everyone behind that goal and bring ourselves one step closer to a benchmarkable, common process.
It’s about time we all start learning from and advising one another on best practice. You want to take inspiration from the stand out organisations in your industry – or other industries, for that matter. By learning from the mistakes and successes of other organisations, you can continue on your social value journey with less risk, better allocating your time and resources.
Your social value doesn’t start and end with your organisation. It’s all part of the bigger picture of people and the planet. So, instead of going it alone, start to recognise all the insight, guidance, and expertise that’s available to you. Whether it’s other organisations, your stakeholders, government guidance, or pro-social organisations, we’re all fighting the same fight.
With Impact, you can measure, monitor, and analyse your social value like never before. Consistently monitor your initiatives and track progress towards your goals over time. As well as generating professional reports to share your progress with others. To find out more, schedule a demo or get in touch with the team on 0161 532 4752.