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Unearthing the essence of true value one bike at a time.

Corporate value is a commodity based on an ability to generate future incomes. Social value is an appreciation based on the good being done in a community. Corporate social responsibility is a philosophy whereby both corporate and social value are created, consolidating both the tangible and intangible. However, in an increasingly globalized world, it is not all about broad programs, large donations and offset projects. Although these are very important, the small local support also needs addressing.

Corporate Social Responsibility CSR at IFS

At IFS, we take Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) seriously, whether in our solutions supporting CSR for our customers, in our global CSR initiative to boost interest in universities for science and technology subjects or in lending our time to support charities local to each individual across the globe.

The value concept

Earlier in the year, I wrote about how CSR can add value to a business with the tangible expectation of generating future profits, but value creation does not stop there. CSR projects and activities also create value in the intangible sense to the extended communities you are supporting by doing good. Good in this sense need not be measured to be appreciated, “this is good as a noun rather than an adjective.” – Robert M. Persig

IFS and the art of cycle maintenance

In May 2016, a willing band of 18 IFS employees in the UK participated in a charity bike build, with the completed bikes donated to a local charity called Aspire, chosen by IFS team members, Angelique Wise and Jan Leybourne.

Angelique commented,

Mountain Bike“We were keen to find a worthy cause local to High Wycombe, which is home to IFS UK HQ. This charity is close to my heart and I feel very proud that we have given a little back to our local community.” Jan added, “The core values of the Centre include hard work, growth and fairness which are akin to our own IFS company values. I hope that the children at the Centre will enjoy using their new bikes.”

Aspire provides outstanding, alternative educational provision and support for secondary age students. Students attend full- or part-time and are referred by schools and the Local Authority. Their focus is to support young people, together with their families and schools, to reach beyond their potential and enable them to flourish by developing positive behaviors, attitudes and aspirations.

The creation of true value

Handover of the bikes was completed in October 2016, within one of the local Aspire facilities at Vale Blueprint Centre in Aylesbury. The students there have a Mountain Bike Centre, which was in desperate need of some new bikes, enabling the Centre to operate this key activity.

The head teacher at the Centre commented,

“Thank you so much for your donation. At our Blueprint site, we teach bike maintenance and safe riding to the students. It is one of the best things we do. It is such a joy to see students riding bikes for the first time in their lives as teenagers!”

In Summary

Much has been, and will continue to be, written about the tangible aspects of CSR, but here we can see the direct intangible benefits of CSR’s social responsibility, whether it is the inherent value within a sense of achievement, the joy of delivery or the progress made by the recipients.

CSR is, therefore, a broad and holistic creator of value, an accumulation of the tangible corporate perspective on future incomes and the intangible social appreciation of enablement.

I welcome comments on this or any other topic concerning finance, HR, CSR and business strategy.

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