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"What is corporate social responsibility? Different organizations have framed different definitions, depending on a number of factors. These include the firm's size, products, activities, location, suppliers, leadership and reputation - although there is considerable common ground between them. The definition of CSR is that CSR is about how companies manage the business processes to produce an overall positive impact on society. " (Mallen Baker, 2010)
In recent years, corporate social responsibility has been an increasingly popular topic. More and more companies notice the importance of corporate social responsibility. Because consumers are not only paying attention to the products like before, but also scrutinizing your brands now. In order to maintain respected brands, CSR is a good way for organizations to evaluate their impact on the world around them, and to make changes that create positive effects in their communities.
This report will show the benefits of corporate social responsibility, the key issues in corporate social responsibility and implementing corporate social responsibility. The aim of this essay is using the corporate social responsibility model to analysis the company of Nokia and to make sure what kind of Nokia's corporate social responsibility strategy is. This report could divide in four parts. Section 1 the overview of corporate social responsibility, Section 2 implementing corporate social responsibility, Section 3 Nokia's corporate social responsibility model, Section 4 conclusion.
CSR Main Components
The scope of CSR is unbound at the present time, because the corporate social responsibility is different for different organizations. British council (2004) shows that "CSR is related to: Environmental protection; Labour Security; Human rights; Community involvement; Business standards; Marketplace; Enterprise and economic development; Health promotion; Education and Leadership Development; Human Disaster Relief."
The Benefits of CSR
Roland Bénabou and Jean Tirole (2009) show that "Empirical studies often relate corporate profitability with socially responsible behavior. There seems to be, overall, no or a slightly positive correlation between socially responsible behavior and corporate returns." So somebody view CSR as a drain on resources, because carefully implemented CSR policies can help your organization. According to the website of Simply CSR (2008), "benefits of CSR to companies include: 1. Win new business. 2. Increase customer retention. 3. Develop and enhance relationships with customers, suppliers and networks. 4. Attract, retain and maintain a happy workforce and be an Employer of Choice. 5. Save money on energy and operating costs and manage risk. 6. Differentiate yourself from your competitors. 7. Generate innovation and learning and enhance your influence. 8. Improve your business reputation and standing. 9. Provide access to investment and funding opportunities. 10. Generate positive publicity and media opportunities due to media interest in ethical business activities."
How to implement CSR commitments
Different company will approach CSR implementation in different ways. Paul Hohnen (2007) show "one way to implement CSR commitments:
Develop an integrated CSR decision-making structure;
Prepare and implement a CSR business plan;
Set measurable targets and identify performance measures;
Engage employees and others to whom CSR commitments apply;
Design and conduct CSR training;
Establish mechanisms for addressing problematic behavior;
Create internal and external communications plans;
Make commitments public."
Case study of Nokia
Overview of CSR at Nokia
Every company's characteristics and circumstances are different, and it will affect how the company defining and implementing social responsibility. So there is no "one-size-fits-all" method for pursuing a corporate social responsibility approach. Let's take Nokia for example to have a look how much work it has already done towards implementing a CSR approach.
Mobile communications have played a big role in people's lives and Nokia was already the world leader in the mobile telephone industry. The Nokia's website shows Nokia's head office is located in Espoo, Finland, but production, research and development, sales, and marketing activities are located around the world. The company has sales in more than 150 country, over a billion people in the world use a Nokia phone. As a market leader, Nokia aim to lead in sustainability in a responsible way by taking it into account in everything they do and improving people's live. (Nokia, 2010)
Nokia's community CSR analysis
From the Nokia's sustainability report 2009, we can see a wide range of examples of what kinds of corporate social responsibility had Nokia done for enhancing their sustainability. According to the corporate social responsibility's key issues, there are sections on:
Environmental protection: Nokia aims to be a leading company in environmental performance. They effort focus on four issues: Substance management, Energy efficiency, Take-back and recycling, Promoting sustainability through services and software. For example, they reduce the average charger's no-load power consumption from 2006 level by 50% by the end of 2010. (Nokia's sustainability report, 2009)
Labour Security: They run a range of campaigns and training programs to raise awareness about health and safety issues. In 2009, Nokia's global injury and illness rate was 0.49, continuing a three-year downward trend. There were no fatal injuries. (Nokia's sustainability report, 2009)
Human rights: They focus on developing workplaces free from discrimination. For example, labor condition assessments are conducted every second year at all production sites. (Nokia's sustainability report, 2009)
Community involvement: Employee volunteering also is an important part of Nokia's global corporate responsibility approach. Every year, thousands of employees contribute their time and effort to worthy causes in their communities. (Nokia's sustainability report, 2009)
Business standards: They comply with employment guidelines and labor condition standard. For example, labor condition assessments are conducted every second year at all production sites. (Nokia's sustainability report, 2009)
Employee wellbeing: The wellbeing of employees had made a big difference with before. In the 2009 employee survey, 61 percent of the respondents felt that their manager supports them in their efforts to maintain a life balance. (Nokia's sustainability report, 2009)
Supply chain: They thought define expectations for their suppliers clearly as an important part of their work and they had developed a comprehensive set of global Nokia Supplier Requirements. (Nokia's sustainability report, 2009)
Education and Leadership Development: They provide a variety of training opportunities for employees to help them develop a broad range of skills for the workplace. During 2009, they spent 25 million euro on training for employees. (Nokia's sustainability report, 2009)
Human Disaster Relief: They try to respond to disaster relief. In 2010 they have responded to the earthquakes in Haiti and Qinghai region of Western China as well as the mudslide in Uganda. (Nokia's sustainability report, 2009)
From the information above, we can see that Nokia's corporate social responsibility has included Economic Responsibilities, Legal Responsibilities, Ethical Responsibilities and Discretionary Responsibilities. At Nokia they try to lead in sustainability by taking it into account in everything they do. So we can say that Nokia's social responsibility strategy is proactive. In addition, Nokia's CSR strategy helps it get great benefits. For Nokia, CSR is not only about shaping corporate culture, minimizing risk, enhancing efficiency and building company reputation in the eyes of the public, but also the CSR had been an integral part of good business sense. Another important business benefit is the CSR help it making a good relationship with government. Corporate social responsibility is fundamental to Nokia's business, brand and culture, so Nokia will continually approach CSR implementation actively. (Nokia's sustainability report, 2009)
In a conclusion, this report has described the definition of CSR, main components of CSR, benefits of CSR to companies and how to implement CSR commitments. Moreover, take the company of Nokia for case study, analysis what kinds of CSR had Nokia done by some examples, what kinds of business benefits had Nokia got and the trend. Finally, the CSR is still in the early stage and the richer our societies the higher demand for social responsibility, so I hope will be more companies approach CSR implementation.