The aim of the assignment is to enable students to focus and gain a better knowledge of a CSR issue of their choice. The assignment also provides an understanding of how companies have addressed the issue in practice.
The students should identify a CSR initiative that a company has launched in their own country, in the UK, or abroad. Examples of such initiatives include: measures adopted to avoid child labour in the company supply chain; programmes to tackle employee discrimination; policies to curb Carbon Emissions and anti-corruption policies. When deciding on the topic, it is important to consider whether there is sufficient information in the public domain about the initiative and the associated issue.
Each assignment should have the following sections:
- A critical description of the initiative. This section should describe the initiative as to its aims, main components, and actors involved, along with some clarification of the issue to which it is being applied. Any links to associated relevant global initiatives should also be examined. The section is mainly assessed on the basis of the number and quality of sources used to describe the initiative, and associated links. It is therefore important to verify any information provided by the company through the review of alternative sources of data including reports by non-governmental organisations.
- Theory-based evaluation of the initiative. This section involves an evaluation of the CSR initiative based on a suitable theoretical framework (e.g. stakeholder analysis). The theoretical framework should be briefly explained and then evaluated as to its main strengths and criticisms. It should then be correctly applied to shed light on how the initiative succeeds in meeting its objectives and other goals of corporate social responsibility. The marks in this section are given for correct and insightful application of the theoretical framework.
- Comparison with another company/organisation. In this section the initiative should be compared and contrasted with how another company has approached a similar issue. The purpose of the section is to evaluate company practice on the basis of best practice. Marks will be allocated for thorough and astute analysis.
- A set of conclusions and recommendations. The final section should be based on the preceding analysis and provide a view on how successful the initiative has been and how to proceed with it in the future. The marking of the section will be based on the clarity and insightfulness of the arguments presented
An organization through corporate social responsibility programs, such as philanthropy, volunteering in NGOs and working for environment sustainability, return their share to the society along with giving their brand a new edge (Tai and Chuang, 2014). The objective of this paper is to study the corporate social responsibility activities for Emerson Electric and comparing them against the competitor brand G. E. Capital Company, with an aim to identify the best CSR practices in the market. Emerson is indulged in manufacturing of products and offering engineering services to clients. From the literature review it can be seen that it has now turned into the largest manufacturer of products and offering engineering services (Torres et al. 2012).GE capital has been used as a comparative brand to compare CSR initiatives against Emerson. The company has a purpose towards improving life’s quality and providing advancement in the technology (GE Capital, 2018). The research for the literature review has been done from company annual reports and scholarly articles are referred. . It is an American multinational corporation headquartered in Ferguson, Missouri, United States. It manufactures products and provides engineering services with a view to capture industrial, commercial, and consumer markets positioning. Although, the paper shows that the company is working towards building a different positioning as per the change in the market. However, it needs to explore more towards achieving an image of healthy drink brand. It is imperative to look at multiple best practices from the company initiatives for the stakeholders. From the research it can be concluded and recommended that for every company CSR is important along with this, it is equally important to stay connected with the stakeholders, showcase the results and objectives in more quantifiable manner, and lastly to work with the global initiatives in order to smoothen and making the process even more faster.
CSR Initiative by Emerson Company
Emerson Company is the largest US based corporation indulged in manufacturing of products and offering engineering services to clients. They are stretched in 6 countries Australia, New Zealand, Indonesia, Papua New Guinea, Fiji and Samoa. This company has used its CSR initiatives to align the interest of the stakeholders with the organization development (Tai, and Chuang, 2014). Corporate governance of company focuses on the complying with the all the applicable domestic and international laws to keep the business more transparent. It is analyzed that CSR initiative and environment sustainbitiy activities undertaken by the Emerson Company are some of the actions which company uses to deliver the best outcomes to society and strengthen the social activities in the best interest of the organization. These all initiative is adopted by the Emerson Company so that it could strengthen its corporate social responsibilities and corporate governance (Emerson Plc, 2018). It will not only keep its business more transparent but also increase the overall outcomes in an effective manner.
Aim of the initiative
By 2020 Emerson Plc has the following objectives to be achieved.
- Implement the Human right policies
- Providing the zero harm work place
- Provide more positions for women across businesses.
- Measure and reduce sugar intensity
- Improve, measure and reduce water intensity
- Developing policies and working towards plastic recycling
- Sourcing assessments (Emerson Plc, 2017)
- Allocate the 1% of EBIT investment programs
- Reducing carbon emission, through controlling carbon footprints (Vallaster et al. 2012).
These above practices are undertaken as corporate governance practice and sustainable program of the organization. These are used as medium to pay back to society and environment which company would take while operating its business process. The company follows the global standard and benchmarks while fulfilling the commitments and targets. The aim of the company is to build a sustainable business. Post 2016, Emerson Company has started an approach to report sustainability for all its businesses towards the GRI (Global Reporting Initiative) standards framework. The company supports maintaining the safe workplace for employees and manufacturing advance technologies and products for the betterment of the clients (Torres, et al. 2012).
- Human Rights Policy through human right diligence and mitigation process, the company identify the various human right impacts raise out of business activities, these rights are identified, prevented and mitigated (Vallaster, Lindgreen, and Maon, 2012). Emerson Company has followed these all the applicable laws and regulations so that it could deliver the best possible safe workplace to its employees.
- Zero-harm workplace; The Company believes that human safety is not limited to physical health and maintenance but also the mental health and stability. In order to implement the mental health support program, the company has an initiative called healthy minds@ work which is a training program for the leaders with an aim to stay alert to issue pertaining to mental health of any colleague. There are 5 pillars to support functioning of the program, these include, Get Moving, Nourish, Healthy Mind, Keep Well, Money Matters (Yin, and Zhang, 2012).
- Positions held by women The Company has a vision for 2020 to have a minimum of 30% women in board, as sr. Executives and in various managerial positions. In order to achieve this company commenced a program in 2016, “Leading at Emerson plc” for female leaders. Another program for women empowerment initiated was Paradise beverages, with an aim for women to become the CEOs of their careers. According to the annual report 2017, women in areas such as sales and technology are also encouraged, where otherwise, they are seemed less involved. Women are also involved in mentoring programs in alcohol beverages industry, incorporating a 6 months mentoring workshops and group discussions (Emerson Plc, 2018).
- Use of less hazardous machines and technology in its value chain It has been seen from the literature that the company is planning to reduce the use ofhazardous machines and technology in its value chain to promote the safety of the employees in Russia and other international level (Przychodze?, and Przychodze?, 2014).
- Water intensity-The target for the company is to reduce the wastage of water to improve the scarcity of the water and effective sustainable future of organization (Emerson Plc, 2017)The company also works towards 25% carbon reduction ensuring 60% the energy comes from renewable and low carbon source, promoting habitat generations projects. (Epstein, 2018).
- Recycled plasticIn Australia the company has managed to recycle 50% plastic in PET containers which includes with a view to cover its electricity products (Yin and Zhang 2012).
- Sourcing assessments Emerson Plc has implemented theresponsible sourcing guidelines and the suppliers are in line with the guidelines in order to maintain the quality with a view to sustain its business process in long run (S?nchez-Hern?ndez, and Mainardes, 2016). This sourcing assessment is required to set up effective guidelines and rules to strengthen its business quality.
A comparison study with G. E. Capital Company
- Human Rights Policy: E. Capital Company has followed 10 universally accepted principles with the concept of fairness, honest and respect by UNGC which is an initiative for human rights, including, labour rights, anti-corruption, and environment policies. G. E. Capital Company is also a member of UNGC’s leadership platform ( G E Capital, 2018) G. E. Capital Company also has a CARE program to measure compliance around human rights, harassments and parenthood protection with the said principles to promote its employees. In 2017, the company had 127 CARE audits, analysing 135 gaps which required actions, so far 15 issues have been taken care of (G. E. Capital Company, 2017).
- Zero-harm workplace: The employees program developed at G. E. Capital Company are encouraged to lead healthy life, the company provides safe and secure working environment to all the employees to let them stay motivated (Clark, Emerson and Thornley, 2014).
- Positions held by women The G. E. Capital Company is free from gender bias; they have a balanced and diverse company culture (GE Capital, 2017). The company on its opening has 43% women employees making it in itself a benchmark with lowest rate of incidents. 37.5% leadership positions in G. E. Capital Company are held by women employees (Porter, and Kramer, 2014).
- Work culture sustainbitiyThe G. E. Capital Company half of the products and electricity tools are gone through the proper safety work program and six sigma tests. The company has a team of scientists are working towards reducing the risk of mishandling in handling electricity tools and keeping safe working place for employees (The G. E. Capital, 2017).
- CSR governance analysis-The Company has worked with the International Federation of Red Cross in Africa towards supporting the Water initiative which is a Global issue in order to improve the same for 30 million people by 2030. The G. E. Capital Company has developed CSR program which is an inspirational and motivational program especially to create awareness about the aligning the interest of the stakeholders with the organization development and company’s sustainable growth with the scarcity of available resources. According to the annual report 2018, 722379 people so far from around the world have been benefited from the Company’s WASH initiative (Emerson Plc, 2017).
- Recycled plastics:90% of the company plastic and packing products of its electric goods are made from recycled content. Since 2012, so far the company has saved around 69000 Tons of carbon dioxide. The G. E. Capital Company is working towards creating completely recycled plastic packing products for its electric goods. The Company is also a part of NPE (New plastic economy) which is a global platform in order to intensity the 100% recycles bottle project (Breitbarth, Schaltegger, and Mahon, 2018)
- Sourcing assessments; In order to support the rural development Company has initiated specialized sourcing programs with several other organizations, they work with the farmers directly to source from high yielding plants, to promote fair practices in agriculture, to improve farming standards in order to improve the product quality. The farmers are also trained and supported (Jackson, and Jackson, 2017).
Theory-based evaluation of the initiative
- The initiative taken by the company is in line with the global issues that the nation is facing, the company goals for the CSR have been developed after due consideration have been given to the expectations of the Company stakeholders, such as the Customers, The partners, Communities and investors (Porter, and Kramer, 2014). The theory base evaluation of the initiatives have shown that company needs to use stakeholders theory, CSR theory and sustianbiltiy theory to strengthen its business outcomes and aligning the interest of its own business with the society and environment development
- According to stakeholder theory, the companies achieve competitiveness in business when they have clear and achievable objectives and implementing efforts towards corporate social responsibility to stay socially responsible, this will help the companies in long term business development and success (Janssen, Blazevic, and Lauche, 2018).
- From the stakeholder’s point of view, according the annual report 2018,
- The company ensures that the every product that Emerson Company sells it makes sure that all the relative details of the products and tools sold would be accompanied with the information and available online in comparison tool.
- The company products are in line with the human protection guidelines which are provided by its sub units under the surveillance of the experts.
- They follow the promotional programs together with the awareness programs.
- The products come with intentional labels mentioning the attached information is true and fairs and designed with a view to navigate clients.
- The company has recently come up with a new system program to develop advance technologies and system for promoting its products.
- The company is taking an initiative to reduce carbon footprint to further reduce the carbon throughout the value chain (Van der Byl, and Slawinski, 2015).
Keeping stakeholder’s theory in practice, the weakness is in the fact that the company is less quantifiable in showcasing the objectives, aims and results in comparison to the transparency approach implemented by G E Capital Company. The strength of the Emerson Company lies in the fact that being an alcoholic and non alcoholic beverage company, it manages to stay transparent by providing the calorie and energy intake information at vending machines, retail stores, on products and online sites (Rahdari, Sepasi, and Moradi, 2016). These theories have shown that company needs to keep its business more transparent towards the stakeholders so that they could understand the business process system of the organization and how company has been setting nexus between its own business development and economic and society growth at large.
The main recommendation to the managers of the Emerson Plc is that company should focus on using the strategic planning which could help them to align the interest of the stakeholders with the Organizaiton development. It should focus on installing the eco-support system, arranging training and development program for the employees to learn the effective and sustainable use of the resources and strengthen its CSR and sustainable business practices. It will not only strengthen the brand image of company but also reduce the wastage of the scarcity of the resources. The recycling of the existing resources should also be promoted by undertaking the innovation and creation in its research and development department. Managers should also use the CSR theory, triple bottom line, and sustainable business practice to strengthen the overall outcomes of the business towards the society. In the end, it could be inferred that company should focus on using the advance technologies and eco- support system in its value chain process so that the emission of the hazardous gases and substance could be reduced.
From the study through the research papers and annual reports of Emerson Company and GE Capital, it can be concluded that Emerson Company is strengthen its CSR activities and compote sustainbitiy program with a view to align its interest with its stakeholders. The CSR initiatives taken by GE capital seemed more quantitative and measurable as compared to Emerson Company. From the study it is suggested that creating long term plans is not necessary, but the plan created must be quantitatively justifiable which could also showcase that company has also focused its interest with the society and economic development. After assessing the CSR and corporate sustainbitiy report it has been identified that GE capital has more global reach and the company follows more global, legal, recognized and certified initiatives, which are helping the company with promoting its own initiatives as well. In order to study the best practices, it is recommended that the Emerson Company must also work towards more quantifiable results and amalgamations and collaborations with global and government initiatives to promote healthy living and protecting environment through standards already implemented. This could be done by using the proper strategic alliance and making its business policies more focused on the society and environmental development.
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