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CSR in India : 9 Principles
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PRINCIPLE 1

Businesses should conduct and govern themselves with Ethics, Transparency and Accountability


CORE ELEMENTS OF PRINCIPLE 1
1. Businesses should develop governance structures, procedures and practices that ensure ethical conduct at all levels; and promote the adoption of this principle across its value chain
2. Businesses should communicate transparently and assure access to information about their decisions that impact relevant stakeholders
3. Businesses should not engage in practices that are abusive, corrupt, or anticompetition
4. Businesses should truthfully discharge their responsibility on financial and other mandatory disclosures.
5. Businesses should report on the status of their adoption of these Guidelines as suggested in the reporting framework in this document.
6. Businesses should avoid complicity with the actions of any third party that violates any of the principles contained in these Guidelines

BUSINESS CASE FOR PRINCIPLE 1
Revenue growth and market access
New customers
Business partner of choice

Cost savings and productivity
Reduced cost of ambiguity
Reduced litigation

Access to capital
Attractive to investors, banks
Attractive to financial market

Risk management/ license to operate
Positively seen by communities, NGOs, local governments, regulators

Human capital
Attract and retain employees

Brand value/ reputation
Positively seen by customers, regulators, media

 

PRINCIPLE 2
Businesses should provide goods and services that are safe and contribute to sustainability throughout their life cycle


CORE ELEMENTS OF PRINCIPLE 2
1. Businesses should assure safety and optimal resource use over the life-cycle of the product – from design to disposal – and ensure that everyone connected with it- designers, producers, value chain members, customers and recyclers- are aware of their responsibilities.
2. Businesses should raise the consumer's awareness of their rights through education, product labelling, appropriate and helpful marketing communication, full details of contents and composition and promotion of safe usage and disposal of their products and services.
3. In designing the product, businesses should ensure that the manufacturing processes and technologies required to produce it are resource efficient and sustainable.
4. Businesses should regularly review and improve upon the process of new technology development, deployment and commercialization, incorporating social, ethical, and environmental considerations.
5. Businesses should recognize and respect the rights of people who may be owners of traditional knowledge, and other forms of intellectual property.
6. Businesses should recognize that over-consumption results in unsustainable exploitation of our planet's resources, and should therefore promote sustainable consumption, including recycling of resources.

BUSINESS CASE FOR PRINCIPLE 2
Revenue growth and market access
New customers
Customer loyalty

Cost savings and productivity
Efficiency gains across the value chain – procurement, production, distribution, after-sales

Access to capital
Investors feel assured that liability issues are minimized
Sustainable production attracts more capital

Risk management/ license to operate
Reduced risk of action from regulators and NGOs

Human capital
Employee morale is high due to working to improve the quality of life of customers/
community

Brand value/ reputation
Better brand identity
New found USP

 

PRINCIPLE 3
Businesses should promote the wellbeing of all employees


CORE ELEMENTS OF PRINCIPLE 3
1. Businesses should respect the right to freedom of association, participation, collective bargaining, and provide access to appropriate grievance redressal mechanisms.
2. Businesses should provide and maintain equal opportunities at the time of recruitment as well as during the course of employment irrespective of caste, creed, gender, race, religion, disability or sexual orientation.
3. Businesses should not use child labour, forced labour or any form of involuntary labour, paid or unpaid.
4. Businesses should take cognizance of the work-life balance of its employees, especially that of women.
5. Businesses should provide facilities for the wellbeing of its employees including those with special needs. They should ensure timely payment of fair living wages to meet basic needs and economic security of the employees.
6. Businesses should provide a workplace environment that is safe, hygienic humane, and which upholds the dignity of the employees. Business should communicate this provision to their employees and train them on a regular basis.
7. Businesses should ensure continuous skill and competence upgrading of all employees by providing access to necessary learning opportunities, on an equal and non-discriminatory basis. They should promote employee morale and career development through enlightened human resource interventions.
8. Businesses should create systems and practices to ensure a harassment free workplace where employees feel safe and secure in discharging their responsibilities.

BUSINESS CASE FOR PRINCIPLE 3
Revenue growth and market access
Business partner of choice

Cost savings and productivity
Increased productivity
High morale
Less absenteeism

Access to capital


Risk management/ license to operate
Improved labour relations leading to less disruptions

Human capital
Attract and retain employees
Reduced tardiness & absenteeism

Brand value/ reputation
Employer of choice

PRINCIPLE 4
Businesses should respect the interests of, and be responsive towards all stakeholders, especially those who are disadvantaged, vulnerable and marginalized.


CORE ELEMENTS OF PRINCIPLE 4
1. Businesses should systematically identify their stakeholders, understand their concerns, define purpose and scope of engagement, and commit to engaging with them
2. Businesses should acknowledge, assume responsibility and be transparent about the impact of their policies, decisions, product & services and associated operations on the stakeholders
3. Businesses should give special attention to stakeholders in areas that are underdeveloped.
4. Businesses should resolve differences with stakeholders in a just, fair and equitable manner

BUSINESS CASE FOR PRINCIPLE 4
Revenue growth and market access
Responsive to customer demands/ needs/ wants leads to increase in market share
The ability to function in the long term is improved to being responsiveness.

Cost savings and productivity
Efficiency gains across the value chain – procurement, production, distribution, after-sales

Access to capital
Attractive to investors, banks
Attractive to financial markets

Risk management/ license to operate
Positively seen by communities, NGOs, local governments, regulators

Human capital
People drawn to work for a sensitive employer

Brand value/ reputation
Positively seen by customers, regulators, media
Ehances corporate character

PRINCIPLE 5
Businesses should respect and promote human rights


CORE ELEMENTS OF PRINCIPLE 5
1. Businesses should understand the human rights content of the Constitution of India, national laws and policies and the content of International Bill of Human Rights. Businesses should appreciate that human rights are inherent, universal, indivisible and interdependent in nature
2. Businesses should integrate respect for human rights in management systems, in particular through assessing and managing human rights impacts of operations, and ensuring all individuals impacted by the business have access to grievance mechanisms.
3. Businesses should recognize and respect the human rights of all relevant stakeholders and groups within and beyond the workplace, including that of communities, consumers and vulnerable and marginalized groups.
4. Businesses should, within their sphere of influence, promote the awareness and realization of human rights across their value chain.
5. Businesses should not be complicit with human rights abuses by a third party.

BUSINESS CASE FOR PRINCIPLE 5
Revenue growth and market access
Business partner of choice

Cost savings and productivity
Minimized litigation

Access to capital
Attractive to investors, banks
Attractive to financial market

Risk management/ license to operate
Positively seen by communities and NGOs
Lower risk of noncompliance

Human capital
Employees/ talent attracted by firm that is committed to the dignity of all.

Brand value/ reputation
Positively seen by customers, regulators, media

 

PRINCIPLE 6
Business should respect, protect, and make efforts to restore the environment


CORE ELEMENTS OF PRINCIPLE 6
1. Businesses should utilize natural and manmade resources in an optimal and responsible manner and ensure the sustainability of resources by reducing, reusing, recycling and managing waste.
2. Businesses should take measures to check and prevent pollution. They should assess the environmental damage and bear the cost of pollution abatement with due regard to public interest.
3. Businesses should ensure that benefits arising out of access and commercialization of biological and other natural resources and associated traditional knowledge are shared equitably.
4. Businesses should continuously seek to improve their environmental performance by adopting cleaner production methods, promoting use of energy efficient and environment friendly technologies and use of renewable energy
5. Businesses should develop Environment Management Systems (EMS) and contingency plans and processes that help them in preventing, mitigating and controlling environmental damages and disasters, which may be caused due to their operations or that of a member of its value chain
6. Businesses should report their environmental performance, including the assessment of potential environmental risks associated with their operations, to the stakeholders in a fair and transparent manner.
7. Businesses should proactively persuade and support its value chain to adopt this principle

BUSINESS CASE FOR PRINCIPLE 6
Revenue growth and market access
Business partner of choice
Sustainability oriented buyers will prefer to deal with organization

Cost savings and productivity
Lower operating costs in the long term
Less danger of “externalities” emerging as liabilities.

Access to capital
Attractive to investors, banks
Attractive to financial markets

Risk management/ license to operate
Positively seen by communities, NGOs, local governments, regulators
Lower risk of noncompliance

Human capital
Talent is drawn to the firm due to its commitment to the wellbeing of the planet.

Brand value/ reputation
Positively seen by customers, regulators, media

PRINCIPLE 7
Businesses, when engaged in influencing public and regulatory policy, should do so in a responsible manner


CORE ELEMENTS OF PRINCIPLE 7
1. Businesses, while pursuing policy advocacy, must ensure that their advocacy positions are consistent with the Principles and Core Elements contained in these Guidelines.
2. To the extent possible, businesses should utilize the trade and industry chambers and associations and other such collective platforms to undertake such policy advocacy.

BUSINESS CASE FOR PRINCIPLE 7
Revenue growth and market access
Growth stimulated due to openness and trust

Cost savings and productivity
Blunt the possibility of others using policy to stymie business.

Access to capital
Openness will attract investors committed to good governance

Risk management/ license to operate
Positively seen by civil society

Human capital
People drawn to work for an open firm

Brand value/ reputation
Positively seen by customers, regulators, media

 

PRINCIPLE 8
Businesses should support inclusive growth and equitable development


CORE ELEMENTS OF PRINCIPLE 8
1. Businesses should understand their impact on social and economic development, and respond through appropriate action to minimise the negative impacts.
2. Businesses should innovate and invest in products, technologies and processes that promote the wellbeing of society.
3. Businesses should make efforts to complement and support the development priorities at local and national levels, and assure appropriate resettlement and rehabilitation of communities who have been displaced owing to their business operations.
4. Businesses operating in regions that are underdeveloped should be especially sensitive to local concerns.

BUSINESS CASE FOR PRINCIPLE 8
Revenue growth and market access
New customers
Market expansion
Innovative thinking

Cost savings and productivity
New models will emerge to impact cost savings

Access to capital
Newer sources of funding such as social venture funds

Risk management/ license to operate
Enhanced governmental support to initiatives -cordial relations with stakeholders conducive for business growth.

Human capital
Potential source of trained employees

Brand value/ reputation
Positively seen by customers, regulators, media

PRINCIPLE 9
Businesses should engage with and provide value to their customers and consumers in a responsible manner


CORE ELEMENTS OF PRINCIPLE 9
1. Businesses, while serving the needs of their customers, should take into account the overall well-being of the customers and that of society.
2. Businesses should ensure that they do not restrict the freedom of choice and free competition in any manner while designing, promoting and selling their products.
3. Businesses should disclose all information truthfully and factually, through labelling and other means, including the risks to the individual, to society and to the planet from the use of the products, so that the customers can exercise their freedom to consume in a responsible manner. Where required, businesses should also educate their customers on the safe and responsible usage of their products and services.
4. Businesses should promote and advertise their products in ways that do not mislead or confuse the consumers or violate any of the principles in these Guidelines.
5. Businesses should exercise due care and caution while providing goods and services that result in over exploitation of natural resources or lead to excessive conspicuous consumption.
6. Businesses should provide adequate grievance handling mechanisms to address customer concerns and feedback.

BUSINESS CASE FOR PRINCIPLE 9
Revenue growth and market access
New customers
Customer loyalty

Cost savings and productivity
New markets brought into fold

Access to capital
Investors back a growing firm

Risk management/ license to operate
Lower risk of consumer action

Human capital
Talent will be drawn towards growing firm

Brand value/ reputation
Customers perceive brand and firm favourably