What is CSR?
Corporate Social Responsibility is a form of corporate self-regulation whereby companies incorporate social and environmental issues into their business operations, in order to achieve sustainable development. As CSR policies are not required by law, it is up to the individual company to choose to engage in wider social issues, and in good, moral business practices. It is important, however, to make the distinction between Corporate Social Responsibility and charity or philanthropy. To have a positive social or environmental impact on society, one may think that simply donating to charity would make a company socially responsible. However, CSR concerns itself with the way a business earns their profits, not spends them. By operating in an ethical, responsible way, companies with effective CSR policies can prevent practices such as corporate fraud, which weaken society and damage employee relations.
Why is CSR important?
The importance of CSR is twofold: it establishes good business ethics that will benefit the society of current and future generations, and it can also boost your company’s financial performance. Although one might initially think that CSR policies would adversely affect a company’s economic viability, the opposite is true. By committing to become a business with strong morals and one that engages with societal issues, you can increase your brand awareness, business reputation, customer loyalty, and the ability to attract and retain talent. Furthermore, CSR policies that focus on reducing your CCF (Corporate Carbon Footprint) will also make your business more profitable in the long run, by minimising waste and emissions, and thus lowering your utility bills.
How does CSR concern the T&I industry?
Translation and interpreting agencies, like any other business, have their part to play in creating a more socially and environmentally responsible society. One way in which translation companies can commit to CSR is by decreasing the amount of paper used in their offices and keeping translations to an electronic format, helping to minimise waste. Moreover, a benefit of the translation industry is the emphasis placed on teleworking – with fewer translators commuting to work every day, this allows for reduced travel and therefore lower carbon emissions. Finally, some T&I agencies may choose to engage in social and humanitarian concerns, for example by offering free interpreting services to migrants or asylum seekers. In removing their language barrier, T&I companies can help facilitate their transition and integration into a new life.
To find out more about our CSR commitments, visit the dedicated page on our website.