Leadership

Trends in Corporate Responsibility

In a survey of the JPMorgan Chase Executive Advisory Board, business leaders reveal how they’re working to improve their communities and the benefits they’re finding along the way. 


In a survey of the JPMorgan Chase Executive Advisory Board, business leaders reveal how they’re working to improve their communities and the benefits they’re finding along the way. 

Corporate responsibility—also known as corporate social responsibility (CSR) or corporate citizenship—is the integration of economically and socially beneficial programs and practices that are aligned with an organization’s business model and culture through a variety of strategic initiatives. These may include: financial support and donations, employee expertise and volunteerism, environment sustainability efforts and more.

Get an inside look into the community and social causes businesses are choosing to support, how they’re spending their time and efforts, and the motivations driving their mission. 

 

74%

of businesses said corporate responsibility was extremely or quite important to their organization; only 2 percent said it was not at all important.

 

Strategies Depend on Size

How would you describe your organization’s corporate responsibility program?

 

Part of our core business strategy 47%  Not part of our core business strategy, but a priority 41% Not a priority 12%

Nearly a third (30 percent) of businesses surveyed currently have a dedicated team or employee leading the charge on corporate responsibility, while 4 percent plan to add one in the next year. But most of the businesses surveyed (65 percent) don’t have a dedicated corporate responsibility leader in their organization—suggesting even smaller companies or those just starting to focus on a specific cause can make a meaningful impact.

Causes That Matter

Corporate responsibility is a broad term, but most businesses have identified specific causes on which to focus their resources. At 64 percent of responses, the top cause listed was workforce development—an area that could benefit individual communities while also helping long-term business outcomes through a stronger future labor pool.

Which community or social causes does your organization focus on?

 

64% Workforce development
49% Educational support
42% Environmental Sustainability
42% Diversity
32% Pay Equity
31% Child or Youth Programs
27% Veteran Support
12% Inclusive Economic Growth
11% Affordable Housing

 

The top reason businesses choose to align with a specific cause is its importance to their employees. However, only one-quarter have a formal process in place for employees to help shape corporate responsibility policies—suggesting an opportunity for businesses to engage employees early on. 

Why did your organization focus on your chosen cause?

 

Important to our employees 68% Important to our founder or senior management 62% Important to our stakeholders 51% Important to our clients 31%

How does your organization support your chosen cause?

79% Financial Support
54% Employee Volunteer Efforts
52% Hiring Practices
48% Special Events

Goods/services 42%

Fair pay policies 38%

Nonprofit board service 29%

Pro-bono work 15%

Plans for the Coming Year

Does your organization plan to increase or decrease corporate responsibility efforts in the next 12 months?

Remain the same 69% Increase 31% Decrease 0%

Nearly a third of respondents plan to increase their corporate responsibility efforts over the next year; none plan to decrease them. There are several reasons businesses may view corporate responsibility as important beyond its social impact, including seeing it as a strategy to attract more talent, support customers and appeal to a younger workforce. Additionally, many businesses are recognizing a need to play a role in addressing problems in their community—such as widening economic disparities, wage inequality and a lack of skills and education.

How will your organization increase its corporate responsibility efforts in the next 12 months?

Better communicate those efforts internally and externally 65%
Create more opportunities for employees to get involved 63%
Develop a clearer strategy 48%
Provide more financial support to causes 47%
Dedicate more volunteer hours 34%

Rewards of Doing Good

“Corporate responsibility should be in a company’s DNA—it is a part of how you do business. At JPMorgan Chase, we focus on combining our business and philanthropic efforts to break down barriers to opportunity and helping more people to share in the rewards of a growing economy. Being intentional about these investments leads to better economic and social outcomes and stronger communities where we do business.”

Steve O’Halloran, Head of Communications, Corporate Responsibility

 

Learn more about corporate responsibility at JPMorgan Chase and how to strengthen the corporate responsibility efforts of your organization.


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