With a well-thought-out CSR strategy, companies create meaningful activities and strengthen the employer brand

The “War for Talents” cannot be won with financial incentives alone. Employees are increasingly paying attention to other points when choosing a company. These expectations accumulate under the concept of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR). On a voluntary basis, companies integrate social and environmental concerns into their business activities and into the interactions with their stakeholders.

CSR strengthens the employer brand

Especially with regard to the increasing willingness of employees to change, CSR can be a decisive criterion for differentiating oneself from other companies as an employer brand and highlighting it positively. Not only Generation Y is looking for meaningful motivation in their daily work. In general, employees feel more connected to the company and contribute their full workforce when they see meaning in their work. For many people, this sense is synonymous with doing good.

However, only a small part of the corporate landscape moves in a market that offers meaningful activities or can be assigned to the social. Companies can close this gap with a well-thought-out CSR employee satisfaction strategy, provided they involve their employees in this strategy.

When does CSR work – and when does it not?

First of all, even the most well-thought-out CSR strategy cannot compensate for the lack of basic requirements, such as job security or adequate remuneration. Similar to Maslow’s pyramid of needs, the basic needs of employees must first be met in order to be able to use CSR strategies effectively.

It is important for employees to be able to identify with the values of the company. If this is the case, then they inevitably carry their attachment and appreciation of the employer to the outside world. This allows them to convince potential future employees of the company and take over an important part of personnel marketing and communication. Conversely, in the future, however, it is also to be expected that companies that do not manage to translate the values of their employees into their own corporate goals run the risk of creating negative associations and possibly being discussed unfavorably in social media.

Even “small” measures have an effect

The advantage of CSR is that it can be used by any company, regardless of its financial resources or size. It does not have to be the charging stations for electric cars for the retention of environmentally conscious employees, CSR can be carried out in many creative facets. The following case studies should be mentioned as a source of inspiration:

Companies can support non-profit organizations, for example, through training, or by providing free workplaces and conference rooms.

Companies can provide (wo)manpower for a non-profit project in the event of a lack of spatial capacity, for example by releasing an employee for a day to get involved in a non-profit project. 

People from different departments or offices who do not see each other during a typical working day can support a social project together and thereby improve the corporate climate.

PR agencies and marketing departments can support non-profit companies or social institutions in marketing.

At Christmas time, a wish tree is available in cooperation with a local non-profit project such as Children’s Villages.Tip: Make the support as personal as possible!

Your company had a successful year? Communicate that you want to share their success and ask your employees to name nonprofits and projects to which a predetermined donation amount should go. The rest of the employees can then vote together on the recipients. The active participation of the employees in the selection of the facilities creates a motivating bond with the program.

You want to do something good for the environment? Rent a beehive! You can distribute the honey you generate to employees and customers and thus point out their ecological values and striving for sustainability.

Communicating engagement in a practice-oriented way

Every CSR action begins and ends with communication! Selected company values can be found on almost every company page. To show how these are implemented in practice, for example through one of the above examples, is rather unusual in many companies. If there are already such actions at all. Sharing the stories and engagements on the intranet, social media or in the local press can benefit your company on many levels: potential new employees can thus receive information about what activities the company carries out and promotes, existing employees get confirmation that they have made a good employer choice.

What CSR brings to employees

“If you love what you do, you won’t work a day in your life” – unfortunately, it’s not that simple. Sometimes this meaningful aspect can be lost in the business environment or it does not even exist. Many people want to volunteer but can’t find time to do it outside of work in their busy lives, or may have respect for managing large-scale actions on their own. By participating in employer-sponsored activities, employees have the opportunity to support nonprofits without spending additional time. In addition, people who are already involved can use their work environment to draw attention to the organizations they support and increase the help many times over. Through the cross-departmental opportunity to get socially engaged, you also further expand your network in your own company.

Benefits of CSR for society

Through the aforementioned ideas and initiatives, non-profit organizations and social initiatives not only receive monetary support, but also many helping hands, passive public relations and thus a reach that they usually could not achieve on their own. Through their CSR strategy, companies enter into dialogue with society and jointly identify and solve social challenges.


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