Corporate social responsibility reports refer to accounts of the form of business self-regulation incorporated into the business model. According to the proponents of Corporate Social Responsibility, companies earn long-term profits by doing business with a view. On the other hand, critics of CSR argue that CSR distracts businesses from significant economic activities. Some authors have also argued that corporate social responsibility is an effort to anticipate the functions of government as the supervisory body over large multinational companies. Consequently, there has been much debate concerning the effectiveness of corporate social responsibility reports among many researchers. In this regard, this research paper attempts to justify that CSR reports are a significant to the operations of a business. The study will achieve this objective by assessing the corporation social responsibility of Nokia.
The concept of CSR report is quite unclear because some companies do not see its difference from corporate philanthropy, which is most common because it is easy to implement and comprehend. Other companies tried to implement CSR, though their participation was limited to their core business. According to Muller and Whiteman (11), this is comprehensible since it is simple for organizations to formulate cost-effective measures that are easily understood. For instance, food-manufacturing firms might prefer implementing interventions related to nutrition, and view it as CSR project. In reality, however, this is the same as corporate philanthropy. In spite of the wide range of approaches to the concept of CSR, there is an agreement among researchers on its key aspects.
The first agreement is that corporate social reports show the conduct of businesses above and over constitutional obligations. They are adopted because organizations deem it to be in their enduring interest. The second agreement is that CSR reports are inherently associated with the concept of sustainable growth. (Muller and Whiteman 56) As such, organizations need to incorporate social, economic and environmental effect in their business operations. The third agreement is that CSR reports are not an alternative supplement to the business operations of an organization, but concerns the manner in which the organization is managed.
CSR reports are a comprehensive business strategy, which aims at ensuring long-term capability of the business. CSR reports achieve this by assuming an active role in the growth of the community, environment and community via good business practices.
Potential Benefits of CSR Reports
The nature and scale of the benefits of corporate social responsibility reports can vary based on the nature of business (Muller and Whiteman 56). These benefits are extremely difficult to quantify, but there is substantial literature urging the adoption measures of CSR. Muller and Whiteman (17) identified an association between environmental performance and financial performance. Nevertheless, organizations might not be seeking the short-run financial profits when adopting their corporate social responsibility.
The first potential benefit of CSR reports is that it can assist in the retention and recruitment program, especially within the dynamic student market. Many potential recruits frequently ask about the CSR policy reports of a firm during an interview. As such, having a comprehensive CSR policy report can offer advantages. Muller and Whiteman (19) pointed out that it can also assist in improving the view of the organization among its employees, especially when they become involved in fundraising, community volunteering and payroll giving. In addition, CSR reports encourage the orientation of customers among frontline employees.
Corporate social responsibility reports are significant in risk management. Risk management is a central component of many business strategies. Reputations of the company take many years to build and can be destroyed in within a very short time through events such as scandals, environmental accidents or corruption among others. Such incidents can attract unwanted attention from the media, government and courts. Having CSR report that does the appropriate thing can address the risks posed by these incidents.
CSR reports are important in brand differentiation. In competitive markets, organizations struggle for exceptional selling proposition, which distinguishes them from the stiff competition in the minds of consumers. Muller and Whiteman (20) also argued that CSR reports have the ability to build customer loyalty depending on the typical ethical values. Various strong brands like The Body Shop, Co-operative Group are built on ethical values. Organizations can also benefit from building standing integrity and best practice.
Case study: Nokia’s Corporate Social Responsibility
CSR is an extremely important element in the business, culture and brand of Nokia. Nokia targets at setting the standards for the mobile phone industry via initiatives that not only have a positive effect but also provide good sense of business. According to Nokia (14), the company’s CSR reports commit it to maintaining high ethical standards in everything the company does. Nokia respects the standards established in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
The mobile phone industry is a comparatively clean one. According to Nokia (14), this industry does not produce significant pollution, does not use a lot of energy, and does not jeopardize communities or people. However, Nokia, like other responsible organizations addresses the impacts originating from this industry and aims at making positive impacts wherever possible.
According to Nokia (14), environmental issues are Nokia’s core priority in its corporate social responsibility reports. The change in climate is a very serious threat that requires every company’s contribution towards building a low carbon economy. Nokia strongly believes that effective and early initiatives are necessary in reducing the threat of climate change. The company has an opportunity in making significant contribution towards averting climate change.
Nokia’s CSR reports see the company among the world’s largest companies in terms of all environmental performance. The present company’s CSR report deals with the environment and it has three significant priorities: managing substances in the company’s products, energy efficiency, and take-back recycling. These three priorities are effective in dealing with the environmental impacts. Nokia is also focusing the production of mobile services in order to encourage sustainable lifestyles.
According to Nokia (14), Nokia’s CSR reports have set high ethical principles for the company’s supply chain and factories. The company seeks to offer consumers with high quality and accessible products, which meet their needs. Above all this, Nokia, through their reports, aims at making positive contribution at the global and local level.
Nokia’s CSR report significantly contributes to its performance in the communications industry. The company’s CSR reports have built a strong brand loyalty among its consumers. Presently, Nokia competes with other leading mobile phone manufacturers such as Apple and Samsung. Nokia performance in this industry is satisfactory compared to other organizations such as Sony, who despite being in the industry for a very long time, has not progressed in this market segment (Nokia 15). This performance can be partly attributed to the companies CSR reports that address consumer and employee concerns.
Corporate social responsibility refers to a form of business self-regulation incorporated into the business model. Corporate social responsibility is a conduct by businesses above and over constitutional obligations. The potential benefit of CSR is that it can assist in the retention and recruitment program, especially within the dynamic student market. Corporate social responsibility reports are significant in risk management. Risk management is a central component of many business strategies. CSR reports have the ability to build customer loyalty depending on the typical ethical values. Environmental issues are Nokia’s main priority in its corporate social responsibility strategy.