Corporate responsibility initiatives improve recruiting and
By Dan Foley
Corporate responsibility (CR) has become an increasingly important strategy for recruiting and retaining the best and the brightest employees. As the competition for good talent continues to heat up, companies are finding it a necessity to design differentiating strategies for attracting and keeping the best workers.
These types of programs can serve to grow an organization’s brand awareness, amplifying their presence to potential employees. More importantly CR programs can provide employees with meaningful experiences impacting the community and ultimately impacting their attachment to their job in the face of increasing competition.
These CR retention tactics are especially important to younger workers. This population of fresh talent weighs a potential employer’s ethics and behavior almost as highly as salary and benefits.
By finding the perfect match for the right cause, employers can offer valuable opportunities for involvement and engagement and at the same time they enhance their relationship with the company and the community.
Increasingly, companies are looking for additional ways to offer value and benefit to their brightest employees. Truly integrating a CR program within the culture of a company can very positively impact the way that employees feel about their jobs. Practices of corporate responsibility create sustainable opportunities for employees to show real impact and along the way get to know their coworkers and managers on different levels, creating further attachment in the workplace.
To maintain a successful program, companies must evaluate their current practices and partnerships. Choosing the right CR partner is critical to creating a successful and mutually beneficial program. The foundation of the program should begin with the partner organization’s purpose aligning with your company’s mission and values. The organization must demonstrate a strong need for and benefit from a company’s CR program investment. A CR program has very little meaning or benefit if it is not supported by the whole company. Communicating with employees and learning about programs and topics in which they are passionate will significantly influence involvement as well. Randstad’s March of Dimes and Rett Syndrome Foundation partnerships have resonated with our offices throughout the country. Most of our staff was already aware of the March of Dimes’ mission and many had been impacted at some point in their lives by their advocacy and mission. Additionally the charter of the Rett Syndrome Foundation was one that inspired our staff to get involved.
Design a program that will allow and encourage employees at all levels to actively participate. CR programs should not solely consist of donations. Financial contributions should be supplemental to active involvement. Clearly communicating the importance of the program to the mission of the company will further show employees that participating is part of the job and the organization. This will alleviate any questions that employees might have about participating and encourage attendance at activities.
Making the commitment from the top of an organization down will create a synergy that can continue to drive the program to success and not lose momentum.
It is important to continually assess your CR relationships, making sure that the structure is tracked and beneficial. Establish benchmarks to measure progress and set goals each year to make sure that the program is on track. These benchmarks can be communicated also internally so that the company transparently understands the relationship and successes or missteps.
Show Your Success
After putting the tools in place to create a comprehensive program, showcasing the company’s CR efforts is vital. Communicating these responsible activities will expand the value of a CR program and further engage current employees. By actively presenting your company’s CR activities through the company website or other supplemental materials, you will be making your company’s commitment evident. Current information, internal communications on activities, and external outreach will garner attention for a company’s efforts and a spotlight on the cause. This will solidify to current employees the commitment and will offer an additional tool to attract prospective employees interested in corporate community investment.
Outward exposure of these practices has also proven to have an impact brand influence with consumers and customers. According to survey by Interbrand and Hall Partners, 13 percent of a consumer’s favorable opinion of a brand comes from knowledge of their corporate citizenship. This number rises higher to 17 percent when looking at business-to-business companies, indicating the importance throughout the business cycle of these types of programs.
A vital part of office culture is the alignment of values between an employer and employees. By illustrating compassion and values alignment through CR programs, companies show that they understand this intrinsic need. Opening and actively expanding these opportunities will enhance a workplace, build positive culture and support business strategies by further engaging employees.
Check out HROToday.com for the top 10 tips on implementing CR in the workplace.