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Employee Involvement Crucial in CSR


Tuesday, 23rd July 2013 at 9:36 pm
Staff Reporter, Journalist
Toyota Motor Corporation Public Affairs Manager Katarina Persic shared insights into how the car giant develops partnerships and makes decisions when it comes to community and social responsibility.

Tuesday, 23rd July 2013
at 9:36 pm
Staff Reporter, Journalist


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Employee Involvement Crucial in CSR
Tuesday, 23rd July 2013 at 9:36 pm

Toyota Motor Corporation Public Affairs Manager Katarina Persic shared insights into how the car giant develops partnerships and makes decisions when it comes to community and social responsibility.

Persic spoke to delegates at the Not for Profit and Corporate Partnerships conference held in Sydney on Tuesday where she said employee engagement and involvement played a big role.

She said Toyota focused on three main areas for its 'social contribution' a term the company favours, having never referred to its contribution as 'corporate social responsibility'.

The focus areas of Toyota's social contribution include the environment, traffic safety and education as well as giving back to local communities generally.

All three areas have an impact on Toyota's business, Persic said.

The company developed its Community Spirit Program in 2003 which focused on capacity building of Not for Profit partners, delivering long term sustainable benefits, supporting the business objectives of all parties and encouraged employee and dealership participation where possible.

"I knew something was missing and that was employee engagement," Persic said.

Persic said the Toyota Community Foundation was created in 2011 following evaluation that employee engagement was missing from the Community Spirit Program.

"I recruited 12 employees from the company to become 'champions' and have input into what the community foundation will do," she said.

From this, Toyota established a workplace giving program in relation to disaster relief where the company matched employee donations. Toyota also established a community and employee fund which gives grants to community groups via their local government partnerships.

"Local activity must align with the global vision," she said.

"Corporate philanthropy and community investment for Toyota Australia must balance the three stakeholder needs."

Toyota's stakeholder needs for corporate philanthropy include the needs of the local community, employees of Toyota and the shareholders of Toyota in Japan.

"[Head office] tell us [Public affairs managers] to find Not for Profits that you believe are doing good and build their capacity," she said.

"We can't risk start-ups, Toyota is not a risk taker."

About Toyota

  • 52 manufacturing plants in 27 countries
  • Manufacturing in Australia since 1963 with 19.6% of the market share in 2012
  • The Australian manufacturing plant is in Victoria
  • 4184 employees in Australia with thousands indirectly employed through supplier and dealer networks
  • Total community investment for Toyota Australia in 2012 was $2.47 million


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