By Gaurav Bhattacharya
Corporate social responsibility is something that almost every business is concerned about these days. Perhaps your company too does its fair share of work for the betterment of the society. But how do you know whether your efforts are making an impact at all?
It’s true that there are no set standards to measure the effectiveness of any social work, but certain indicators can help you get some perspective.
Take a look at these eight metrics that will help measure the social impact you are able to make as a brand:
1. Volunteer hours
The more you can encourage your employees to come forward and do charity work voluntarily, the bigger the impact you are able to make. And one surefire way to check whether or not your CSR efforts are reaping any results is to keep tabs on the number of volunteer hours.
2. Business impact metrics
There’s a lot more to employee giving and volunteering programs than meets the eye. Of course, you receive monetary benefits in the form of tax breaks, etc. But the benefits go way deeper.
People want to work for socially responsible companies, and investors want to sign deals with them. Therefore, some traditional business metrics – such as an increase in new leads, direct sales and an improvement in business relationships -- can often serve to measure the social impact of your company.
3. Net promoter score
This score is meant to find out how many loyal customers a company has. You can start off by conducting a campaign asking detailed questions to gauge into customers’ psychology, and find out how they feel about your social contributions. The NPS score also happens to be a leading indicator of growth and the quality of perception people have about a brand.
4. Social media activities
Social media has to be the easiest way to find out just how fruitful your social campaigns are turning out to be -- and where you stand in terms of your social responsibilities.
There are countless ways in which companies can leverage the power of social media and use it as a metric to assess their social impact. Ask people questions as to how they feel about your company’s contributions. Ask them whether they feel the company is living up to its responsibilities or not. Use platforms like Twitter and Instagram to target hashtags based on how often you are mentioned in a particular discussion, related to corporate social responsibilities.
5. Reduction in employee turnover
Employees love to be a part of a corporation that believes in the act of giving and making social contributions. And if you are able to conduct successful social campaigns, your efforts are sure to reflect on your employee turnover ratio. If people feel proud to be associated with your brand, they are much more likely to stick with you.
6. Quality of feedback
The only way to find out how people feel about a company being socially responsible is to ask for employee feedback. You can use your company website, social media or other ways to request for feedback. The responses you will receive would be a direct reflection of your social campaigns’ effectiveness and overall impact.
7. Increase in overall sales
Like we discussed, there are many implications to being a socially responsible brand -- part of which is about creating a sustainable society, offering green products, and building a healthier tomorrow. But eventually the company stands to benefit financially too as a result of being a socially responsible entity.
Companies can often observe the social impact of their CSR activities if they sense an increase in overall sales, the business bottom-line or customer retention.
Asking for donations to give to a charitable cause that a company believes in is one way to boost philanthropic profile. The more you can encourage employees and customers to donate for a good cause, the stronger outreach your initiatives will have. A good inflow of donations is a good indicator that you are making a strong positive social impact.
The bottom line
That pretty much sums up a few good metrics businesses can use to measure the impact of their social activities.
What are your thoughts on corporate social responsibilities, and how do you think companies can become more socially responsible? If you feel we missed out on some important CSR metrics, feel free to share them with us.
Image credit: Pexels
Gaurav is the CEO and co-founder of Involve which is a software as a service platform to help companies and its employees give back to their favorite causes by creating personalized giving and volunteering opportunities. He actively participates in the LA tech innovation ecosystem through panel discussions and mentoring. Gaurav started his career by starting a medical software business while still in high school and is an accomplished technology leader with 6 years of team and program leadership with PwC, Montgomery County & Cymer. When he’s not working with the tech community, Gaurav enjoys volunteering for local events with his team. You can follow Involve on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.