Today, the business faces a number of new challenges as competition between companies grows. The most important competitive advantage of the company is the formation of its development strategy, which is focused on meeting the social needs of both staff and all stakeholders. Therefore, all companies, including audit, have to look for new ways to interact effectively with different market participants and implement them in numerous CSR projects.
CSR is a vector of strategic business development
For many players in the audit services market, it becomes apparent that the success of the audit company in the market depends largely not only on the quality of services provided and the qualifications of staff, but also on the volume of its investment in the social sphere of the country. As practice shows, well-thought-out corporate social responsibility policy helps to create a positive image of the company. This, in turn, brings certain benefits to the company: it helps in expanding the client base, facilitates the attraction of investments, makes more constructive interaction with state structures, strengthens the rating positions in the markets.
Business always behaves rationally. But if one calculates a benefit of two to three years, then those who develop the CSR implementation policy see its prospect for decades.
Implementing CSR projects, the companies pursue two goals: to increase their impact and reduce their risks. Solving the societal problems, they provide themselves with the necessary number of employees and clients, and create a worthy reputation.
Development of CSR strategy
Current requirements to social initiatives necessitate the integration of social policy and corporate strategy, considering the allocation of funds for social needs as a form of strategic investment. Therefore, the development of CSR strategy should involve the implementation of measures in two main vectors: internal - implementation of social activity inside the company and external – conducting CSR activities in interaction with the external environment.
Internal social programs are related to staff development, health care and creating safe working conditions, addressing socially responsible corporate restructuring, and improving business efficiency. External measures are focused on infrastructure and social projects, responsible business management, environmental protection, as well as strengthening the reputation and image of the company.
In order to meet the high demands of society and the market, companies need to focus their attention not on point-based social activities, but purposefully build a comprehensive CSR policy.
Steps of implementation of CSR projects
- Analysis of company activity
First of all, it is necessary to analyze the activity of the company, check the availability of assets, consider possible directions of funds investing and further prospects for business.
- Formulation of CSR development scenarios
Based on the results of the strategic analysis, the social mission of the company is formulated, as well as the medium and long-term goals not only for the implementation of social initiatives, but for the business as a whole. Further, the alternative programs that include measures to achieve the sustainable development goals and determine the CSR implementation strategy are developed.
- Choosing the optimal CSR development strategy
The possible scenarios of corporate social responsibility development need to be analyzed for the effectiveness of each social initiative and project.
- Documentation of the chosen CSR strategy
The chosen CSR strategy is set out in the relevant document. This may be CSR Policy. Usually, the companies create a devision or department that implements CSR projects, prepares strategic plans in this direction, and analyses the interim results. They also appoint people responsible for implementing CSR initiatives and achieving the forecast performance indicators.
- Implementation of measures included in the approved CSR strategy
In accordance with the developed strategy and plan for the implementation of CSR projects, appropriate social initiatives are being prepared and implemented.
- Summarizing the interim results of each stage of CSR implementation
At this stage, the results of the implementation of the targeted projects are evaluated, necessary adjustments are made in the long-term CSR program in accordance with the new challenges at the market and the conditions of company’s activity (both internal and external).