As stakeholders of all kinds shift their priorities to reflect the changing world, organizations are putting an increasing emphasis on corporate social responsibility. But is it financially viable?
Corporate Social Responsibility
Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) has been all the rage for the last decade. Defined by the Government of Canada as the act of taking responsibility for a corporation’s impact on the environment, the communities where they operate, their employees, their stakeholders, and the general public. The concept began as a sort of; self-regulating practice performed voluntarily by organizations who wished to implement a corporate ethics strategy. However, as the years have passed, many forms of CSR have grown to become mandatory at multiple levels of incorporation.
Pure social efforts tend to be the most popular within Corporate Social Responsibility, as they tend to be the most visible and have the most apparent or immediate impact. Social responsibility takes the form of community engagement, development, or charity contributions etc. Basically, it means the company is interfacing with the local community or general public in a tangible way. The company Toms Shoes is a perfect example of a for-profit business that incorporates social responsibility into their business model. They run a “one for ONE” model that promises to deliver a pair of shoes to a child in need, for free, for every single sale they make. Although Toms Shoes goes above and beyond for their corporate social responsibility, many organizations incorporate their own forms of social responsibility CSR. But there is one form of CSR that is beginning to take precedence over all others.
CSR isn’t just about how a company interfaces with the community or public at large. A significant portion of it is how a company interfaces with the environment. From production to service and everything in between, everyone leaves a carbon footprint and every action leaves a carbon trail. For reference, in 2008 the world’s largest 3,000 publicly-listed companies were responsible for $2.15 trillion USD of environmental damage.
Aside from the obvious overarching benefits of being environmentally conscious, many companies are seeing boosts in productivity, efficiency and positive publicity by “going green”. For example, a Vancouver-based credit union installed programmable thermostats and lighting systems, ultimately cutting their electricity bill by 20%. TD Canada Trust began using video-conferencing systems that saved 800,000km of travel and 48tonnes of CO2. Additionally, a study in Forbes magazine from 2012 found that employees who work for companies that actively pursued environmental and social responsibility efforts were more engaged than those in companies who were not. Increasing morale by 55%, business processes by 43% and a public image that was 43% stronger than those companies who did not participate in CSR. The result of these effects, is a lower turnover rate and an increase in job satisfaction, both of which boost the bottom-line.
The benefits of CSR and environmental sustainability extend beyond planetary and business process benefits. Customers, in both B2B and B2C scenarios, are becoming increasingly interested in products and services that are socially and environmentally conscious. 42% of consumers say they discuss the behaviour and ethics of companies, and one-third of people say they have recommended a company based on its CSR initiatives. In a survey by the Responsible Consumption Observatory it was found that 75% of people think consuming responsibly means consuming in an eco-friendly manner, whether it be goods or services. But there needs to be a balance, implementing a CSR initiative needs to be easy, efficient, and cost-effective. For those companies that run fleets, gps fleet tracking is a great option.
Fleet Tracking For CSR
As a business that runs vehicle or equipment fleets, it’s a lot easier than you think to go green. The two biggest contributing carbon footprint factors for a fleet are; idling and aggressive driving (mostly speeding). However, it can be extremely difficult to curb the amount of fuel fleet drivers waste. Telematics and GPS tracking devices fill the gap between fleet managers and operators. Monitor activity in real-time, with live GPS tracking, review historical data with fleet replay or receive notifications of policy infractions with our instantaneous alert system.
We’ve collected over 1,000,000 engine hours worth of data and have been tracking industry trends to identify where companies are most likely to save money and leave a positive impact on the environment. For example, fleets in the Commercial Transportation industry have an average engine idle time ratio of 41.9%. That means, vehicles that operate in Commercial Transportation on average are idling for nearly 42% of the time that their engine is turned on. This results in an average of ~320KG of CO2 being released into the atmosphere, per vehicle. Curbing that number by just 15% would result in a reduction of ~50KG per vehicle, per month. This statistic can make any corporation citizen proud while benefiting the environment. But aside from idle time, there are many metrics that have a negative influence on the carbon footprint that a fleet leaves behind. Titan GPS fleet tracking can track these metrics and help fleet managers reduce emissions, contribute to CSR, and let’s not forget, save money.
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