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A brand is regarded as the reputation of a company. Presently, the quality of a product (or service) defines a brand. Soon, however, standards will be re-defined and initiatives on corporate social responsibility will also be given regard aside from the product.

Human Resource executives together with the CEO must lead the organization in observing social accountability. At the minimum, the welfare of the employees, consumers and the environment must be considered when establishing strategies.

Let’s take a look at British Telecommunications (BT), an IT service and Telco offering higher value internet products and services operating in 170 countries.

When I read the company’s sustainability report, I discovered that their corporate social responsibility initiatives are integrated to their overall business strategy. Not a separate program, as what other companies normally do.

A statement taken from their website said

“.. our vision is to be dedicated to helping customers thrive in a changing world. Doing this in a responsible way is what our corporate social responsibility (CSR) work is all about.”

Further to that, a report entitled, Changing world: Sustained values 2007 , listed BT strategies as follows:

  1. Understanding Customer Satisfaction- with the rapid changes happening in business and society, bases for customer satisfaction may also changed
  2. Preventing Misuse of Technology- on issues pertaining to
    • Privacy and data security
    • Content standards
    • Child Safety
  3. Reduce their carbon footprint and influence their suppliers and customers as well
  4. Inclusive Society Program (ISP) – Technological change and globalization are have stimulated economic growth and increased global prosperity But these benefits are unevenly distributed. Many people are excluded by factors such as overty, lack of education or prejudice. We want enhanced communication and technology to help give everyone a fair chance, thus, giving
    • Connectivity – giving more people access to communications technology
    • Content – developing online content that benefits communities and small businesses
    • Capability – helping groups and individuals develop skills and use technology.
  5. Finding Skills, Services And Products Worldwide
  6. Getting the Foundations Right
  7. Sustainable Economic Growth

Like other companies, BT would like to have sustainable growth But they crafted their strategy around the likely changes on customer’s expectation brought about by the advancement of technology, globalization, climate change and terrorism.

Take for example, the BT Total Broadband , one of BT’s products. They took consideration of our growing dependence on the internet. Aside from speed and connection reliability, BT offered “3 bundle options”- taking into consideration the unique individual needs on security, convenience, entertainment, and the value for money. This gave customers the flexibility to choose which one fit their needs. The broadband speed test was also developed so would be customers can “check the waters”, as the saying goes.

As British Telecommunications attempt to meet the diverse requirements of their market, in the process, they have also built the base and infrastructure to help the community and people.

This is a business model worth looking at.

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