Corporate Social Responsibility

Environmental, Social and Governance (“ESG”) is a set of criteria used to measure and compare a company’s environmental, social and governance standards. It enables corporate social responsibility to be measured, reported, and compared, and makes corporate sustainability an integral and verifiable part of a company’s strategy. ESG helps to demonstrate the risks and opportunities that will impact a company’s ability to create long-term value.

We have always supported and invested in our employees and the communities within which we operate in a socially responsible way. However, as we continue to grow, the impact on our employees and communities will widen and deepen. It is therefore important that we fully understand the environmental, social and governance risks that may impact on, and opportunities that may benefit, our operations and future strategy.

We have established and enhanced a number of socially responsible initiatives over the past few years, and we are now combining and developing them further under an agreed ESG strategy. This strategy will measure our impacts and set meaningful positive targets to which we will be held accountable.

As part of this commitment we will seek to align our efforts to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (“SDG”), helping the private sector, in its own small way, to make the biggest contribution to people and the planet. The 17 SDG are a blueprint to achieve a better and more sustainable future for all, by addressing the global challenges we all face, such as poverty, inequality, climate change, environmental degradation, peace, and justice. By aligning our strategy to these goals we can do our part and aim to contribute to all 17 goals where possible. We aim to contribute in some way to all of these goals, but will start with those that we will have the greatest impact over the short term.

Corporate responsibility is a journey rather than a destination and our ESG strategy will continue to expand, develop, and mature over time.

Our ESG Strategy

Our ESG strategy will drive our socially responsible activities and underpin sustainable and responsible decision making, by:

  • Challenging everything we do;
  • Championing responsible and ethical behaviour;
  • Setting appropriate targets and metrics that match our ambitions
  • Engaging and empowering more employees in what we and they can do; and
  • Investing in regular reporting to keep ourselves accountable.

At present our strategy is structured into five focus areas aligned to the UNSDG:

Inclusion and Diversity: ensuring we have a culture of inclusion where everyone feels that they belong, and can develop and grow (Goals 4, 5, 8 and 10)

Wellness: ensuring our employees are empowered to actively pursue activities, choices and lifestyles that lead to a state of good mental and physical health (Goal 3)

Charitable Giving: ensuring we give back to the communities within which we operate (Goal 17)

Environmental: ensuring we reduce the environmental impact of our business (Goals 12 and 13)

Governance: ensuring we have an appropriate and effective framework in place in relation to our leadership, Board and Committee oversight, shareholder rights and stakeholder interactions (Goal 16)

In conclusion, we are working hard to ensure we have a safe, inclusive, and diverse working environment, to reduce our environmental impact as much as possible, continue to invest in and give back to our communities, and be a good neighbour.

Download our Corporate Social Responsibility statement

Woman completing a charity run

Our Charity Involvement

We actively encourage all our staff to get involved with charities and fundraisers in their communities, and we regularly hold company-wide fundraisers to support our chosen corporate charities, Alzheimer’s Research UK and the Alzheimer’s Society. Here are just a few of our charity highlights from 2020:

  • We held the Aston Lark weekly Pub Quiz throughout lockdown 1.0. with donations to take part made our company charities
  • We did the 2.6 Challenge – this collaboration, with London Marathon Events, Institute of Fundraising and more, was to encourage people to dream up an activity based around the numbers 2.6 or 26 i.e. pledging to run or ride 2.6 miles as your daily exercise, holding the plank for 2.6 minutes, to gardening for 26 minutes.
  • We held the ‘You’re on Mute!’ campaign – this was to capitalise on all the ‘mute moments’ our colleagues have on video calls. Each time they were caught speaking while on mute, they had to make a £1 donation. We raised £675 for our company charities.
  • We participated in the nation-wide Poppy Appeal, with our Claims division raising money for the Royal Legion with their own poppy window displays.
  • We held a Big Quiz Night – this was a great opportunity for staff to relax, have a drink and some virtual fun with colleagues, whilst raising money for our company charities

… and so much more.

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