What motivates CSR Reporting?

A survey of Adam Friedman Associates “Corporate Social Responsibility: Who’s Responsible? Finding an Organizational Home for an Increasingly Critical Function” aimed to find out how executives within Fortune 1000 organizations develop, measure and report the results of their CSR initiatives. The key findings revealed that profits and Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) are closely linked, and many businesses evaluate the relationship between these two variables when developing strategy. Based on the responses from 77 executives, they following motivations for CSR reporting could be observed:

  • At 88%, enhanced reputation was the main driver behind CSR reporting
  • Competitive positioning and social consciousness were tied at 71%
  • Significantly, profitability (38%) and pending or existing legislation (32%) were determined to be motivating factors

The study also made a number of recommendations:

  1. There should be a comprehensive reporting process with a direct link to the CEO
  2. The CEO and top management support is also critical in driving the company’s CSR programs
  3. CSR responsibilities should be embedded into every employee’s job descriptions
  4. Holding the CEO and top management accountable for the implementation and results of the company’s CSR program
  5. An understanding of the influence and importance of various groups in the company’s CSR processes
  6. Coupling the company’s standard measurement tools with a regular evaluation of traditional and social media coverage about the company.
  7. Communicating about the company’s CSR efforts through social media platforms, including Facebook and Twitter, in addition to posting information regularly on the company website