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B The Change - Using Business As A Force For Good

B-Corp: What is it? Why is it important? And why are we going through the process?

So, What Is B-Corp?

Not heard of B-Corp Before? B-Corps are companies verified by B Lab to meet high standards of social and environmental performance, transparency, and accountability. B-Corps are still a relatively new concept with the first companies being certified in 2007, however, it is a global movement which has gained momentum, especially over the last few years.

Still not clear on what a B-Corp is? Here is the definition provided by B-Lab:

Certified B Corporations are businesses that meet the highest standards of verified social and environmental performance, public transparency, and legal accountability to balance profit and purpose. B Corps are accelerating a global culture shift to redefine success in business and build a more inclusive and sustainable economy.”

You might not even realise but there are a lot of big brands who are B-Corp Certified; Ben & Jerrys, Gousto, The Body Shop, PROPER Snacks, Tony’s Chocolonely, Wolf & Badger, GiffGaff and more.

How Many B-Corps Are There?

Currently there are 6500+ Certified B-Corps across 89 countries, however, in the UK there are just over 1200+ Certified B-Corps. For up-to-date information you can find more details here:

Is There A List Of Certified B-Corps?

Yes, and you can find a list of B-Corporations on the B Corp Directory. This directory will show you all of the companies that are certified, you can search by business name, keyword, location, or industry.

How Do You Become A B-Corp?

To get certified a company must meet stringent requirements, including completing a comprehensive assessment, and then having the assessment verified by B-Lab (the non-profit behind the B-Corp certification). Companies must also disclose any controversial operations to B-Lab and commit to complete transparency and public disclosure of their performance.

To become certified, you’ll need to score at least 80 points out of 200. Once certified, you’ll need to sign the B-Corp Declaration of Interdependence and pay an annual fee based on your company’s revenue. You’ll also need to recertify every three years to maintain your B-Corp status. The standards to become a B-Corp are intentionally set high and are meant to recognise leading companies and cover 5 key areas: Governance, Workers, Community, Environment, and Customers.

Why is becoming a B-Corp important to H2R Selection?

  • Force for good/change

We have always been active within our community and over the last 6years we have proudly raised over £16,500 for charities. These charities include: The British Heart Foundation, Bristol Mind, BillyChip, Cancer Research UK, Marmalade Trust, and Children’s Hospice Southwest. However, B-Corp challenges us to take this even further and whilst we have done a lot of work for charities and our community, doing the B-Corp process has encouraged us to see how we can also do our bit for the environment.

  • It has allowed us to take a closer and more meaningful look at the business.

The B-Corp process has enabled us to ask deeper questions. Such as; What more can we do for our community? What more can we do for the environment? How can we best support our staff? How can we better serve our clients?

  • Build trust and transparency with our staff, our clients, and our community.

Transparency helps build stronger relationships with customers and with employees. We believe it will allow everyone to have more confidence in the leadership and the decisions that are being made.

  • Being held to a high standard

Accountability allows us to be challenged, to be held responsible and allows us to continue to strive to be better, not just as a business but as individuals as well.

Ultimately this is a journey we are proud to B on, and currently we are still in the very early stages of our B-Corp journey, but our hope is that we will be certified either by the end of this year or next year. It is, however, important to note that we have had a lot of support, in particular Andy Hawkins has been instrumental in supporting us through the assessment process, helping us with questions, concerns and also being our cheerleader. If anyone is wanting to discuss our experience with B-Corp so far you can give us a call on: 01172141550 or you reach out to us on LinkedIn: Richard Freke

And if you are looking to start the B-Corp process we strongly recommend that you get in touch with Andy.