Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and Going Green are two catch phrases that we seem to hear quite frequently these days. Conservation, recycling and waste management efforts that began generations ago as initiatives by ecological groups, have gained ever-increasing awareness and momentum into our everyday lives. Our ongoing efforts to become more earth or eco-friendly have become part of our daily routines – both inside and outside of our work lives. At home and the office, we recycle a great many things we used to throw into the trash.
But can the implementation and leveraging of business technology be inherently ‘green’ and socially responsible? It can if its HR Shared Service Delivery technology accessed via ‘the cloud.’ “At HP for instance, CSR is in the company’s DNA, as it reflects the mindset of the company’s founders who made it an integral part of company philosophy: "The betterment of our society is not a job to be left to a few. It is a responsibility to be shared by all.”" Dave Packard
“At HP, we see great examples of CSR programs across different countries and different business units. They vary depending on the external environment the particular Center operates in, and are tailored to each Center’s demographics and business nature.
“I believe that our Shared Services Centers are leading in this space thanks to a couple of reasons. First of all, employees of our Centers are a perfect example of “Generation Y” with an average age of 29-30 years. They represent people whose expectation is to make a meaningful difference in societal causes, through their employment. The Shared Services Centers are typically based in countries that are still developing, so big corporations like HP can make a difference to the society and should participate in creating a culture of social responsibility." from 'Shared Services: Impact on Local Communities' by Agnieszka Orlowska
While shared services delivery systems may be implemented on a company’s internal network; most firms opt for secure access via cloud computing. As Michael Brown writes in 'Going Green: The Eco-Friendly Aspect of Cloud Computing,' "There’s a lot of discussion these days on the benefits of the cloud. It’s known for saving organizations – large and small – a great deal of time, money and headache. What may not come to mind immediately are the environmental benefits of cloud based computing. “Going Green” and reducing the corporate carbon footprint have also been fairly recent trends among companies. Not only is it a way for businesses to make drastic changes in the preservation of our planet; it’s a good way for them to improve their public image."
As consumers' awareness about global social issues continues to grow, so does the importance these customers place on CSR when choosing where to shop. Consumers aren't the only ones who are drawn to businesses that give back. Susan Cooney, founder of crowd-funding philanthropy platform Givelocity, said that a company's CSR strategy is a big factor in where today's top talent chooses to work.
"The next generation of employees is seeking out employers that are focused on the triple bottom line: people, planet and revenue," Cooney told Business News Daily. "Coming out of the recession, corporate revenue has been getting stronger. Companies are encouraged to put that increased profit into programs that give back."