Published 4 years ago.
About a 4 minute read.
Image: United Nations Foundation/Walgreens
The metrics used by consumers, employees and investors to measure a company’s success are changing quickly, so the most forward-looking businesses are focused on implementing solutions that benefit people, society and the planet more-broadly — while bolstering their bottom line, too.
The role of business is shifting quickly amidst the proliferation of global
challenges such as climate change or the deepening disparities in health,
housing, education, and wealth. Today, consumers, employees and investors expect
corporations to act sustainably with greater transparency – while also giving
back to the communities in which they operate.
The good news is that more CEOs and executive teams are coming to a consensus
regarding the shift in focus from shareholders to stakeholders. Last summer, 181
CEOs signed the Business
new memo on the “Purpose of a
which emphasized their commitment to customers, employees, suppliers, and
communities more broadly. While these commitments are an important indicator of
the shift, it appears marketing teams are many years ahead of other departments
when it comes to turning these purpose-driven aspirations into action.
The discrepancy between benevolent mission statements and the strategies in
place to execute them are breeding a new wave of cynicism among the general
public, who can quickly detect marketing gimmicks from genuine commitments
backed by the company’s resources and financial support. Considering the
formidable nature of the modern enterprise, companies need to identify ways they
can leverage their core business operations to help address a key social need.
Our goal at Givewith is to help corporations walk the
talk, making it easy for companies and nonprofits to partner, and ultimately
deliver on the promise of social purpose.
Here’s a look at how companies are embedding social impact directly into their
strategies to drive tangible, measurable change:
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In November, we announced a partnership with SAP
to integrate our platform and add social impact programs directly into the
company’s sourcing and procurement process. SAP Ariba is the world’s largest
business-to-business network, and this integration enables millions of buyers
and suppliers in the Ariba Network to add social impact funding into the process
they are already using. This is a remarkable opportunity to scale social
innovation — if just 8 percent of the nearly $3 trillion worth of transactions
that are processed through the Ariba Network annually use Givewith, this would
generate over $3 billion in new funding for nonprofits taking on the most
pressing issues of our time. This not only generates new funding for the world’s
most effective nonprofit organizations, it also creates unprecedented business
value and allows organizations to deliver on their social purpose promises.
Footwear brand Sperry has built its brand identity around its “love for the
sea,” which is why its partnership with Waterkeeper
— the largest and fastest-growing nonprofit solely focused on clean water — made
perfect sense. By joining forces, the two organizations are combatting the
by “introducing a new collection of shoes for men, women and kids, made with
BIONIC® material, which is spun from plastic recovered from marine and coastal
environments.” The company is complementing these efforts with a educational
initiative that operates through Amazon’s Echo smart speakers. When
prompted, the Sperry Waterkeeper skill on Amazon’s Alexa will offer a range of
actionable suggestions for using less plastic.
Walgreens has partnered with the United Nations Foundation’s
campaign to help provide 50 million life-saving vaccines to children around the
world since the program’s inception in 2013. As part of the Get a Shot. Give a
Shot. program, Walgreens donates the value of a vaccine to the UN Foundation
for every immunization administered by the company. The funds generated from
this program are donated to Shot@Life to help support measles and polio
vaccination efforts — which, to date, have helped children in Afghanistan,
Central African Republic, Chad, Democratic Republic of the Congo,
East Timor and Tanzania. Through this partnership, Walgreens is providing vaccines to remote areas of the world where
vulnerable populations have limited access to healthcare, advancing its
commitment to the UN’s Sustainable Development
In the new era of corporate social responsibility, businesses need to identify
ways to scale their impact through innovative initiatives and ongoing
operations. The metrics used by consumers, employees and investors to measure a
company’s success are changing quickly, which is why the most forward-looking
businesses are focused on implementing solutions that benefit people, society,
and the planet more-broadly — while bolstering their bottom line, too.
Published Dec 23, 2019 7am EST / 4am PST / 12pm GMT / 1pm CET