Marketing and Comms
Amazon, Panera Have Best CSR Reputations in the U.S.

Amazon, LEGO, BMW, Sanofi, Schneider Electric and Panera Bread have the best public perception for corporate social responsibility (CSR) in the United States, according to a new report by the Reputation Institute.

The U.S. CSR RepTrak highlights the companies that have the best reputations for CSR among the U.S. public based on a survey conducted in Q1 2015.

The list includes businesses from a wide range of industries — including some industries that do not have strong collective reputations. This suggests that the U.S. public is willing to separate companies from their competitors if they act responsibly and communicate clearly about their actions.

Since the completion of the initial US CSR RepTrak® survey, major news stories appeared regarding the corporate practices of a handful of high-ranking companies — such as The New York Times exposé on Amazon’s alleged draconian human resources practices, and stories about former Subway spokesman Jared Fogle’s arrest. To provide a before-and-after comparison, Reputation Institute re-surveyed the U.S. general public on Amazon and Subway in early September.

Although Amazon tops this year’s US CSR RepTrak® survey, the recent resurveying shows a 4.5-point drop in Amazon’s reputation. Given the score change, Amazon’s reputation has shifted from excellent to strong from Q1 to Q3.

And Subway’s declining reputation is even more significant, with a 6-point drop in score from earlier this year, which would effectively remove them from being considered a most reputable company altogether.

Late last month, Reputation Institute released its list of companies with the best CSR perceptions from a global perspective. Google, BMW, Disney and Microsoft topped that list, which focused on perceptions from 15 countries. The same companies dominated the Reputation Institute’s 2014 list.

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