Good 360
MEDIA, JOBS & RESOURCES FOR THE COMMON GOOD
NEWS  | 

St James Ethics Centre’s CRI Report


Monday, 13th September 2004 at 1:09 pm
Staff Reporter
Westpac has achieved first place in a list of Australian companies with the greatest social awareness.

Monday, 13th September 2004
at 1:09 pm
Staff Reporter


0 Comments


FREE SOCIAL
SECTOR NEWS

 Print
St James Ethics Centre’s CRI Report
Monday, 13th September 2004 at 1:09 pm

Westpac has achieved first place in a list of Australian companies with the greatest social awareness.

The Corporate Responsibility Index ranks Australia’s fourth largest bank ahead of BP, Rio Tinto, BHP Billiton and Toyota.

The inaugural international benchmarking of corporate social responsibility by the St. James Ethics Centre and verified by Ernst and Young shows local businesses are equal to their counterparts in the UK, although weaker in the area of assurance.

The complete results of the Corporate Responsibility Index were published this month in The Age and The Sydney Morning Herald.

A voluntary self-assessment survey, the Index set up a process that compared the systems and performances of different companies in and across specific sectors.

It was established two years ago by 80 leading businesses working with UK charity Business in the Community (BITC).

The first round of Australian results are consistent with other international surveys indicating that while many companies are at an advanced stage in policy development, only a few are really successful in actually driving corporate responsibility throughout the business.

Dr Simon Longstaff, Executive Director of St James Ethics Centre, says Australian companies are generally doing well in the area of Corporate Strategy. However, consistent with the latest UK Index results, more work needs to be done to ensure that responsible business practice is embedded throughout all areas of business activity.

He says both British and Australian companies fall short of community expectations that they not only develop policies for responsible business practice, but also implement these.

St James Ethics Centre has not played a role in rating the performance of participating companies. Rather, the Centre acted as Trustee for the process – ensuring its overall integrity, free from conflicts of interest.

The primary focus areas examined in the Index are strategy, integration, management practice, performance and impact, and assurance.

Simon Longstaff says Westpac achieved the highest ranking (98.24%) because its corporate values and commitments are reflected in all of its mainstream business practices.

Other companies that scored highly were BP (97.98%), Rio Tinto (93.31%), BHP Billiton (92.77%) Toyota (88.06%), Cadbury Schweppes (86.92%) Holden (86.33%), Ford (85.79%), Telstra (85.49%), Boral (84.91%) and Lion Nathan (82.42%)

He says that that by making its social responsibility objectives and performance available in the public domain, Westpac is helping to lift the bar at a time when consumer confidence is at an all time low.

Many of the companies with middle ranking on the Index are undertaking innovative programs in some areas, but often at a local level.

Dr Longstaff says this reflects that we are still in the early stages of implementing, measuring and reporting on corporate responsibility.

26 companies participated in the inaugural Australian Corporate Responsibility Index, ranging from the finance sector to manufacturing to extractive industries.

Companies at the top of the Index display the following characteristics:
– they have incorporated the rhetoric of their corporate values and principles into the way the organisation is managed;
– they can measure and report how this works in practice;
– and they are taking action to reduce any negative impacts of their products
or services and maximise their positive qualities in the marketplace.

Registration for the 2004 Index is now under-way. Dr Longstaff expects many more Australian companies to participate in the Corporate Responsibility Index next year, contributing alongside other global partners and leading NGOs in shaping the development of the Index as it extends into the international marketplace.

The 2004 Index is online now and participants will have ten weeks to complete the survey and results will be published in March 2005 to coincide with the 2004 UK results.

– The UK Corporate Responsibility Index attracted 122 businesses in its first year in 2002, including 93 companies from the FTSE 350 and 53 from the FTSE 100. 139 companies participated in the second year.
– BITC is a unique movement in the UK of 700 member companies. Its purpose is to inspire, challenge, engage and support business in continually improving its positive impact on society. Its member companies employ over 15.7 million people across 200 countries.
– BITC will provide guidance and support to the application of the Index in Australia, with the intention of working with partners to establish the Corporate Responsibility Index as a global benchmark for company practice.

If you would like an electronic copy of the Index results in PDF format just send an email with the words Corporate Responsibility Index in the subject line to probono@probonoaustralia.com.au.



FEATURED SUPPLIERS


Yes we’re lawyers, but we do a lot more....

Moores

...


Helping the helpers fund their mission…...

FrontStream Pty Ltd (FrontStream AsiaPacific)

HLB Mann Judd is a specialist Accounting and Advisory firm t...

HLB Mann Judd

More Suppliers

Get more stories like this

FREE SOCIAL
SECTOR NEWS

YOU MAY ALSO LIKE

Social Responsibility Guide for Start-Ups

Lina Caneva

Wednesday, 5th October 2016 at 8:46 am

Mentoring: A Catalyst for Corporate Philanthropy

Lina Caneva

Wednesday, 25th February 2015 at 9:54 am

The Role of Business in Enhancing Peace and Reducing Violence

Lina Caneva

Wednesday, 3rd December 2014 at 10:23 am

Conscious Capitalism is not CSR

Xavier Smerdon

Wednesday, 8th October 2014 at 10:00 am

POPULAR

Red Cross Moves to Wage-Based Fundraising Model

Lina Caneva

Thursday, 16th November 2017 at 8:30 am

Concerns Raised Over New ACNC Board Appointments

Luke Michael

Monday, 20th November 2017 at 2:28 pm

New Same-Sex Marriage Bill Looks to Protect Faith-Based Charities

Luke Michael

Monday, 13th November 2017 at 5:25 pm

Adelaide at the Vanguard of Ending Street Homelessness Globally

Wendy Williams

Tuesday, 21st November 2017 at 8:43 am

Write a Reply or Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


Good 360
pba inverse logo
Subscribe Twitter Facebook

Get the social sector's most essential news coverage. Delivered free to your inbox every Tuesday and Thursday morning.

You have Successfully Subscribed!