Importance of creating value through Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR)
The term CSR, which stands for Corporate Social Responsibility, refers to the strategies implemented by the organizations with the purpose of maintaining sustainability within their corporate culture, community, and the whole world. It encompasses all the practices that companies undertake to be socially accountable from the social, economic, and environmental aspects. As the scale of social and environmental threats grows to an unprecedented level, all the stakeholders, including consumers, employees, and investors, become more conscious of the products and brands they use, incentivizing businesses to turn to CSR more than before. According to the research done by Cone Communications, more than 60% of young professionals stated that they are not going to accept the job from companies with little or no CSR activities as well as more than 90% of the Gen-Z addressing the importance of social practices within the organizations. Thus, rather than only contributing to the social good, CSR practices put the company well ahead of the competition.
EKVITA has long been committed to the concept of sustainability and community engagement with a keen sense of corporate social responsibility. Recognizing the responsibility that came with its business operations, the company implemented several strategies to combat unsustainable practices. One of the main criteria of evaluating corporate social behavior is environmental criteria, which illustrates what a company does to reduce its negative impact on the environment. At EKVITA, both internal and external factors have been taken into account when it comes to CSR initiatives. Starting from internal affairs, the company has been practicing several socially conscious actions.
While around 8 million pieces of plastic are being thrown into our oceans every day and 381 million tons of plastic waste are produced yearly, changing everyday practices in organizations could minimize the environmental externalities. At EKVITA, instead of plastic water bottles, we prefer alternatives such as filtration equipment.
In 2018, the largest portion of municipal solid waste (MSW) was from paper materials, which alerted the necessity of immediate action. Thanks to environmental initiatives, organizations with high consumption of printed papers have the opportunity to recycle the papers.
To avoid unconscious energy waste, organizations have the opportunity to use automatic energy-saving systems. As the well-being and the comfort of EKVITA’s employees are at the forefront, the company incorporated greenery into its workspace. It's scientifically proven that green surroundings relieve stress and foster productivity by 20% for employees.
Being involved in community-based CSR plays a crucial role during times of public crises, such as pandemics, natural disasters, etc. When the COVID-19 outbreak paralyzed the whole world, acting collaboratively was undeniably essential as Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General of World Health Organization (WHO) also mentioned “This is not just a public health crisis; it is a crisis that will touch every sector. So, every sector and every individual must be involved in the fights”. EKVITA was one of the earliest companies that helped to fight against the pandemic not only taking internal measures by providing its employees with hand sanitizers, disposable face masks, and sanitary gloves but also by donating directly to the Coronavirus Response Fund in Azerbaijan.
After only a few months, a large-scale Nagorno Karabakh war erupted and lasted for 44 days which put the country’s economic and social state into a vulnerable position. EKVITA stood with its community right after the start of the war and made donations to the Azerbaijan Armed Forces Assistance Fund.
CSR initiatives are not only limited to what has already been mentioned above and what is commonly known to the organizations. Companies can distinguish themselves by starting or joining the social projects run within their communities. Recently, EKVITA sponsored the social project, “One book for each child”, that contributes to the education of children living in the area of refugees and IDPs. In addition, EKVITA has made several visits and donations to the orphanages as putting disadvantaged children first has always been necessary for the company’s CSR values.
With the purpose of supporting youth EKVITA held many internships that more than 50 people got the industry experience over the last 3 years and the company has actively joined many projects such as ADA Employability week, ELSA, etc.
To further elevate the efforts, EKVITA will continue prioritizing social impact with far-reaching and varied CSR programs to extend its principles to the whole industrial ecosystem.
Author: Nargiz Yagublu