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Gary Medlow

I believe that being a successful business is as much about how you operate as it is what you offer. To achieve this success,...

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Fasset: It’s Our Responsibility to be Socially Responsible

I believe that being a successful business is as much about how you operate as it is what you offer. To achieve this success,...

I believe that being a successful business is as much about how you operate as it is what you offer. To achieve this success, Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) or as I prefer, being socially responsible, can influence staff motivation, community support and the delivery of an environmental strategy for a sustainable future. Reading this article (see article1) entitled ‘CSR and the Money-Back Guarantee’ got me thinking about the challenges faced by our business and quantifying what this actually means for us going forward.

Today is a competitive, tough marketplace where businesses have to meet the ever-changing demands of customers and it’s therefore their responsibility to establish how central a role their statement of CSR plays in this.

The temptation when times are tough is to cut back on ‘philanthropic’ (def: often shown by giving money for the benefit of others) activity to save cost – but in my mind, CSR does not always come with a money-back guarantee; good business is good for business.

Fasset is a national facilities and commercial property management company whose flagship location is at the office space location, Langstone Technology Park in Hampshire. We define our CSR activity as raising the awareness of CSR both internally and externally in order to positively demonstrate that we are a good corporate citizen and responsible business partner.

To achieve this, Fasset heavily invest time and resource in delivering CSR initiatives in three key areas:

1) Community
2) Health Safety
3) Wellbeing and Environmental

I believe that without a CSR policy in place, people and businesses will be less inclined to work with us or for us. As such, implementing a CSR strategy is an essential part of our business strategy in order to be commercially viable in the long term.

At Fasset, we operate a culture of challenge and innovation across our business and hold with the traditional view of fostering employee and stakeholder engagement. As discussed in the article (see article1), we have broadened our definition to include company policy decisions such as the switch to greener energy ‘Bio-Mass’ (see article2) from more traditional energy sources. What I mean here, is that we are a service delivery business where our staff play an essential role. Their motivation and commitment is therefore absolutely essential to deliver the level of service we deliver; and in turn CSR is central to this – although it may be difficult to attribute a monetary value to this.

A stakeholder comes in various guises and where ‘buy-in’ is essential but ‘Return on Investment’ (ROI) less tangible, perhaps it’s more about an education process to establish and maintain support for CSR activities.

I do advocate that CSR should have some relevance to the business and for us that means valuable community recognition and support, reducing our environmental impact and promoting the health and wellbeing of our employees.

I will end by quoting directly from the article (see article1) as I wholly agree with what is being said, Solfrid Skilbrigt, Programme Director for Corporate Responsibility across Steria Group comments about their own activities: “An investment in the company’s future and the CSR programme received awards because it is a sustainable, long term commitment”.

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