BITC to give impact greater weighting in CSR index

Business in the Community (BITC) is to put a greater emphasis on the impact of CSR initiatives as part of an overhaul of its annual Corporate Responsibility Index.

BITC director of benchmarking and reporting Patrick Mallon has revealed that this year’s survey will have an altered points system to reflect the progress firms have made in CSR efforts and to reward firms that effectively measure their social impact.

The four main areas in which firms are assessed – strategy, integration, how well CSR is managed, and performance and impact – will no longer be given equal weighting of just under a quarter of total marks each.

Instead, performance and impact will now represent more than a third of the total marks.

Mallon said: ‘We reviewed how we conducted [the survey] and this recognises the fact that firms may have projects in place and there is a need to measure and recognise the impact they have.’

The revamped survey will be sent to firms next month, with the results revealed in March 2005.

This year’s poll is the BITC’s third Corporate Responsibility Index. The last survey put National Grid Transco in top place, with the firm being praised for its work in avoiding environmental accidents.

Other high performers were BP, Unilever, Aviva and Sainsbury’s, which was singled out for its work on diversity in the workplace.

Mallon said that BP and National Grid Transco were among companies that did well last year in the performance and impact section.

Meanwhile, BitC, whose CEO is Julia Cleverdon, is to launch its latest networking initiative next month, called ‘Dialogues at Starbucks’.

The group has linked up with the coffee chain to organise evening meetings on topical CSR issues.

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