Below are a number of short case studies that show some of the partnerships that have been formed through the Buy Social Corporate Challenge, and the social impact that has been achieved as a result of these relationships.
Clarity & Co. and PwC
Clarity & Co. is a registered charity and one of the UK’s foremost social enterprises, employing, training and supporting people with disabilities to create high-quality toiletries, soap and cleaning products.
In 2015 CLARITY launched The Soap Co., their premium ethical brand, which they now supply to PwC, having started this relationship through the Buy Social Corporate Challenge. The aim is for all 29 PwC offices to eventually stock The Soap Co. products, with more offices being added each month.
Through partnerships, like this one, CLARITY & the Soap Co. have been able to expand their distribution capacity, and therefore significantly increase their social impact.
Ninety and Zurich
Digital consulting social enterprise, Ninety began working with Zurich in 2015, as part of the Buy Social Corporate Challenge.
Ninety has a challenger model that aims to bring social change and good business together, and has a vision to generate £1billion for social investment over a 30-year period.
The contract with Zurich has allowed Ninety to have such impact as providing a year’s access to clean water for over 50,000 people in rural Africa through one clean water project, via their model. Zurich are now one of Ninety’s largest clients, and they have direct and growing relationships across the business.
See:detail and Johnson & Johnson
See:detail began working with J&J, following an introduction from SEUK, as part of the Buy Social Corporate Challenge. The Newcastle based software company takes positive action to employ people with an Autism Spectrum condition.
The engagement began with a pilot project in 2015 in J&J’s Consumer division and has since delivered a range of projects across other sectors, continuing to create new employment opportunities for those that may otherwise not have the chance.
Community Wood Recycling and Wates
Community Wood Recycling is a social enterprise that rescues and reuses wood by collecting and sorting waste timber that would otherwise be landfill, and makes it into beautiful handmade wooden products. They also provide sustainable employment, training and volunteering opportunities for local people – especially those who are disadvantaged, such as people who have been homeless, have drug or alcohol problems, or are ex-offenders.
The firm was one of the first social enterprises to join Wates’ Preferred Suppliers list and works at a range of Wates sites across the country. They now provide their services to a number of Buy Social Corporate Challenge partners.
Belu and Santander
Belu offers the most ethical choice in water service, from bottled mineral water to filter machines and refillable bottles. In 2016 Belu started supplying water to Santander via a multi-layered supply chain, including their restaurant contractor Sodexo and Sodexo’s wholesaler Brakes.
Belu donates 100% of its profits to WaterAid, supporting their work in making clean water, decent toilets and good hygiene normal for everyone, everywhere within a generation. Belu is also the only UK bottled water company to produce 100% carbon neutral to the British Standard PAS2060 across its entire business, and all products.
Support from businesses like Santander is vital to helping Belu achieve business growth to support Wateraid to help end global water poverty.
Belu is now also partnered with Amey, Zurich and Johnson & Johnson.
From Babies With Love and Linklaters
From Babies with Love is a baby brand with a difference. Every penny of profit from their ethically sourced baby gifts goes to supporting orphaned and abandoned children around the world.
Their gifts speak to the powerful emotions new parents feel for the welfare of children. Rather than, for example, a bunch of flowers, the gifts are enjoyed over many months, reinforcing well wishes and appreciation from the employer, and through social impact also tangibly communicating people, procurement and community values. From Babies with Love’s social mission links people strategy with corporate responsibility in a new and relevant way, contributing to employee engagement, retention and diversity objectives.
Linklaters were one of the early adopters of From Babies with Love’s gift service and have helped the social enterprise to win business with other companies.
Wildhearts and Zurich
The Wildhearts Group launches companies which fund the delivery of entrepreneurship education and microfinance. Wildhearts Office offers 35,000 products, competitive prices, outstanding customer service and enables their customers to make a positive social impact, both at home and abroad, through purchasing their business supplies. Their business ethos continues through helping young people develop employable skills and gain work experience, providing apprentices and jobs through Micro-Tyco, a programme that helps to unleash entrepreneurial talent in schools, universities and companies.
Wildhearts has been working with Zurich since 2016, providing the insurer with their office supplies and consumables. The firm is proud to be moving towards new products and offerings and the launch of Wildhearts Horizon delivers an offsite storage and document management service.
Wildhearts is a great brand by itself and has worked with a large number of Buy Social Corporate Challenge partners. The social enterprise has a growing number of corporate clients in different sectors and credibility is built with new customers when they see the Zurich name on their list of existing customers.
Recycling Lives and Wates
Recycling Lives is a unique social business using its commercial operations – in recycling and waste management – to support and sustain charitable programmes. It is a nationwide recycling operation processing scrap metal, construction waste, general waste, end-of-life vehicles and waste electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE) for major businesses, including Wates Group. It manages the waste process from beginning to end, sourcing and removing waste streams, processing and recycling it through its industry-leading machinery, then exporting materials and reporting for compliance needs.
As a preferred supplier to Wates Recycling Lives works on over 90 sites nationwide, handling their skips, bins, hazardous waste and sweeper hire requirements. The provider is unique in using recycling operations to create social value in three ways – an offender rehabilitation programme which operates in a number of prisons, a programme which supports homeless men and a programme which diverts food from landfill by delivering meals to community groups.
Recycling Lives work for Wates Group has also helped it to develop new relationships and contracts with others in the construction industry, such as Robertson Group and Willmott Dixon.
Blue Sky Development (now part of Forward Trust) and Amey
Blue Sky creates jobs for ex-offenders in both the public and private sectors by directly employing ex-offenders for up to 6 months, providing vocational training and employability courses and supporting ex-offenders through peer guidance, loans, and training grants. Many of the firm’s full-time staff are reformed ex-offenders who now work to help reform the lives of those still in the criminal justice system. For each ex-offender employed for 6 months, Blue Sky estimates they save the public purse an average of £18,600.
Blue Sky works across a range of industries and has a very well-established relationship with one of the largest infrastructure and support services companies in the UK, Amey plc. There has been very high engagement from senior level staff from Amey to understand the impact that is taking place at Blue Sky.
Attigo and Johnson & Johnson
Attigo is a creative healthcare digital agency that works with pharmaceutical and medical companies facilitating their various requirements ranging from digital work to roadshows. The firm’s main social aim is to employ people who may be at a disadvantage in the labour market because of their long-term health condition, including people with lived experience of mental health issues. They are committed to ensuring that their working environment promotes the mental health and wellbeing of employees, clients, and visitors.
Attigo was founded in response to Johnson & Johnson (J&J) expressing a strong desire to work with social enterprises. The Mednet Group had already been working with J&J for more than 10 years and it seemed only logical for them to create a separate entity to deliver this requirement and in so doing create significant social value. The partnership with J&J has also enabled Attigo to start developing relationships with other pharmaceutical companies to win more contracts.
Mediorite and PwC
Mediorite is an award-winning creative agency that uses video and photography to create powerful stories that connect audiences with brands and causes. High-profile clients such as PwC, The Children’s Society and Goodyear Tyres work with them because they are fast, flexible and focused on compelling storytelling.
As a social enterprise, Mediorite make a social impact by providing training and opportunities for young people from diverse backgrounds to gain experience in the creative industry. Their high quality and affordable film and photography services are produced by award-winning creatives, assisted by young people. The experience gained by working with PwC has helped Mediorite to expand into more complex areas of film. It has also helped them to win work with other corporate clients, and to continue to create training and employment opportunities for young people.
Click here, for more information on the Corporate Challenge and how your business can take part.