Google, Microsoft, Walt Disney and BMW have the best CSR reputations globally, according to new research from the Reputation Institute (RI).
Although this year Google beat out Microsoft for the top spot, the same companies remain in the top four as last year. The top companies based on their CSR reputation come from the IT, automotive, consumer goods and media/entertainment industries. The new entrant in the top 10 this year is LEGO, while Nestle is no longer in the top 10 list.
The 2014 CSR RepTrak® Study, which ranks the world’s 100 most reputable companies based on citizenship, governance and workplace, provides a strong business case for embedding CSR and sustainability principles into corporate strategy and operations. The study results show that firms with better CSR reputations have a much better ability to foster desired supportive behaviors among consumers, including buying their products, recommending their company or trusting the company to do the right thing when faced with difficulties or disruptions.
Some 89 percent of consumers are willing to recommend companies with excellent CSR RepTrak® scores, compared to only 6 percent of consumers who would recommend companies with poor CSR RepTrak® scores.
Similar to last year, the results from this year’s study also show that many companies still struggle to effectively communicate their good corporate citizenship with the general public. More than half of the respondents from the U.S. and U.K. were neutral or uncertain when asked if a company was a good corporate citizen.
“Consumers globally remain highly uncertain about corporate performance in the citizenship dimension.” says Viktoria Sadlovska, Research Director for CSR and Reputation Risk Management at Reputation Institute. “Increasing public awareness of a company’s CSR performance is key to maximizing the return on investment (ROI) in CSR and sustainability”.
Switzerland, Canada and Sweden are the countries with the best global reputations worldwide, according to an RI report released earlier this year. Finland was the biggest gainer in the top 10, moving up to fourth place, from eighth last year. The U.S. was down at 22, behind Brazil and above the Czech Republic.