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Social Enterprise Day – Buying Responsibly to Reach ESG Goals

Social Enterprise Day – Buying Responsibly to Reach ESG Goals
11 November 2021

Ethical consumerism has become a big trend in recent years as consumers are becoming more concerned about where their money is going, and it’s not just individuals.

Large corporations land government commissioners are all pledging to spend money with organisations that are prioritising their social, governance and environmental impact. Businesses Including Sodexo, Amey, Compass Group, CBRE, Wates and Lendlease are all  aiming to collectively spend £1 billion with social enterprises through their procurement.

It is now a boardroom level commitment for many companies to allocate their procurement budget with those suppliers that align with or complement their own ESG goals. Choosing to “buy social”, within the diverse supplier and social enterprise community, gives consumers and companies a transparent, ethical and accountable way to spend their money.

Diverse suppliers and social enterprise businesses (often the two go hand in hand) range in size and are spread across a wide variety of sectors. From coffee and water suppliers to toilet paper and socks to design agencies and security companies, there are plenty of organisations to choose from when it comes to meeting diverse supplier spend targets.


What is a Social Enterprise Organisation?


To become a certified social enterprise organisation businesses must satisfy several key criteria, which importantly include proving how profits are distributed and invested as well as company ownership status and evidence of a social mission.

Social enterprise organisations are founded on a social or environmental mission and like any successful business they are committed to making profit. Unlike other businesses their profits must be reinvested or donated to charities or sustainability projects rather than paying dividends to shareholders. Working with social enterprises and diverse suppliers is a simple way larger corporations can make a powerful ethical difference.

Corps Security is one such firm. Corps was originally founded to help veterans returning from the Crimean war to find gainful employment, and to this day they still actively seeks to employ ex-military personnel.

In July 2021 Corps Security gained Social Enterprise status, marking the organisation’s pledge to reinvest their profits back into their business, to support their teams. They also make considerable charitable donations to create positive social change within the ex-military community.


Social Enterprise Day 2021


Social Enterprise Day 2021 is on Thursday 11 November, and is part of Global Entrepreneurship Week. On this day #WhoKnew will be taking place – a global digital campaign designed to give social enterprises the chance to tell their stories, show what makes them different from traditional businesses and shout about the impact of their work.

The campaign is all about highlighting the diversity in the sector across the globe and is an opportunity for all social enterprises to take part in a public-facing campaign, as well as engaging their staff directly with their social enterprise mission.

It’s also an opportunity for organisations supporting the social enterprise movement to raise the profile of their own work, whether as market-builders, investors or champions of the sector.

To explore a range of FM suppliers, visit our business directory.

Picture: a photograph of a Royal Legion poppy seller and a child. The child is holding a donation pot, and the poppy seller is holding a box of poppies

Article written by Ella Tansley | Published 11 November 2021


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