Developing a CSR policy

Developing a CSR policy

When developing a CSR strategy or policy account should be taken of the long-and short-term interests of customers, employees and workers throughout the wider supply chain, and the general public. Assessing these interests will help develop an organisation’s understanding of the potential value it creates or the damage it can do for employees, local communities, customers and the environment, as well as shareholders.

Many ethical considerations in the core areas of CSR are enshrined in law, including employment law. However, CSR typically aims to go beyond legal obligations with organisations taking voluntary measures and initiatives. Indeed, CSR has grown in part due to perceived limitations of legislation, either in its scope, detail or power to influence.


​CSR initiatives fall into four main groups:

  • Community – focusing on how the organisation’s activities positively or negatively affect the general public
  • Employees or labour – focusing on the rights and well-being of employees and other workers in the value chain
  • Environment – from recycling materials to the whole carbon footprint of the organisation
  • Market Place – including issues such as fair trading, corporate taxes and anti-bribery.

Some of the most visible voluntary CSR activity relates to community-based activity, for example, supporting local community projects financially, offering work experience opportunities or via employer supported volunteering programmes.

Use our CSR template to help in develop a CSR policy.  

The Institute of Business Ethics has a role in helping businesses with the development, implementation and embedding of effective and relevant corporate ethics and responsibility policies and programmes 

The CIPD offer advice on developing a CSR policy 

Business in the Community offer guidance to help businesses contribute to a fairer society.

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