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What is corporate social responsibility (CSR), and how does it benefit companies?


What is the definition of CSR?
Understanding the basics of corporate social responsibility.

Corporate social responsibility (commonly referred to as CSR) has been a growing business trend over the past decade.


Perhaps surprisingly, those most interested in corporate citizenship aren’t necessarily the small, socially-minded startups selling eco-conscious wares, but medium-to-large companies. Indeed, you'd be hard-pressed to find a Fortune 500 company that doesn't mention corporate social responsibility on its public website.

With CSR values included in many mission statements, it's important to understand the definition of corporate social responsibility, why companies are increasingly interested in it, and the benefits it can have on local and global communities.


What is the definition of corporate social responsibility?

Corporate social responsibility is a business approach that focuses on positive economic, social, and environmental actions not just for the company, but for the community as well.


This mindful approach gives a greater sense of purpose to the company's workforce while also becoming a more attractive employer and brand.


Ultimately, corporate social responsibility is about supporting people, planet, and profit.


What are some CSR activities?


In the past, CSR has gained a reputation of being a one-day activity where co-workers volunteer their time at a local charity.


However, with the advent of platforms such as Visit.org, employees can now help build their company’s purpose culture through engaging one-time and repeat activities, in addition to traditional volunteering, giving programs, and donation matching.


Such CSR activities include but are not limited to:

  • Inspirational talks

  • Team-building experiences

  • Workshops

  • Clothing or food drives

  • Mentoring opportunities

  • Kit building

  • Skills-based volunteering

  • Lunch and learns

  • Hands-on volunteering

Engaging the help of a platform such as Visit.org enables CSR and social impact professionals to invest in impact areas their employees care about.


Is CSR here to stay?


Besides supporting impact areas that matter and actively benefiting their local community’s economic, social, and environmental needs — companies investing in a culture of corporate social responsibility find that it is good for business to do so.


Here are a couple of reasons why CSR is more than just a trend.


CSR programs attract talent


According to a Nielsen Global Corporate Sustainability Report, customers are more willing to pay more for products from companies who are more socially responsible. Meanwhile, business leaders are becoming increasingly aware that give-back programs attract and retain employees.


Millennials and Gen Zers especially prioritize working for companies that care about contributing to social good. To attract younger employees, it is essential for corporations to offer CSR programs in order to save on recruitment costs.


By supporting impact areas that matter, businesses are becoming more reputable — recruiting both talent and customers.


Employee engagement


According to a poll at Gallup, just 32% of employees working for organizations are now engaged in their jobs. This is problematic because employee engagement is essential to the success of a business.


Fortunately, companies do not have to go bankrupt to impress or entertain their employees. In fact, 93% of employees believe that companies must lead with purpose. When companies make a community impact — particularly in an impact area that employees care about workers can develop a greater sense of meaning in their jobs.


With platforms such as Visit.org, there are even more ways to build a culture of engaged, socially-conscious employees who are passionate about what they do.


How to build a socially conscious business


As increasingly more businesses spearhead responsible projects and meaningful goals, corporate cultures are enhanced.


Your company’s CSR program does not have to look like that of other companies who are able to donate millions of dollars overnight.


Instead, you can start by planning out an itinerary of virtual, in-person, hybrid, or on-demand experiences that easily integrate into existing company events, cultural observances, and important holidays.


Reach out to our team to learn how Visit.org can help your company improve CSR with social impact experiences.

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