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The growing need to make companies socially responsible is crucial for the future.

Corporate social responsibility: branding or awareness?

More and more people talk about the need to make companies socially responsible and, with that, involve them in social responsibility activities.

Aware of the lack of these practices that, in 2015, the United Nations (UN) established, as an agenda for 2030, seventeen sustainable development goals for humanity, objectives on which companies and institutions have supported themselves for the creation of corporate social responsibility measures.

But, after all, what is this corporate social responsibility (CSR)? What does it encompass?

In short, CSR is the voluntary integration of social, economic and environmental practices into the structure of organizations. It addresses issues that are on the agenda such as diversity, inclusion, and the environment, but also needs such as improving working conditions, access to health and education, and even the promotion of peace, justice and innovation. But what is the purpose? That organizations, within their possibilities, manage to generate value in their structure and business that goes beyond profits and employment, and that they take a social position of concern for the future. In exchange, companies can point out some positive aspects linked to the implementation of such practices:

- Improvement of the sense of belonging of their employees, who, by being involved in the initiatives, are not only participating in team activities but can feel pride in the brand that represent;

- Organizational attractiveness for new talent, when compared to companies that do not implement CSR measures. Which can be particularly relevant when the objective is to attract talent from generations Y (millennials) and Z, more concerned with social and environmental causes, but which, in a growing trend, may come to be verified even more with the following generations;

- Visibility towards current or potential new partners and customers, who may become aware of the existence of services through these activities, or who, faced with a moment of indecision resulting from a vast offer on the market, may prefer to be loyal to a socially responsible company;

- Enhancement of its brand, as a consequence of all the previous points, because if the organization transmits its more human nature and respect for society's principles, it will be associated with a reputation that could translate into an increase in business and a consequent economic appreciation ;

- And because, ultimately, companies are made of and for people, ensuring the possibility of their active participation in improving society. Because CSR is not a branding strategy, but an awareness that the organization can act as a promoter of change for a better world.

Don't think, however, that the implementation of CSR measures does not bring with it some challenges for organizations. Namely, that of promoting the involvement of all employees in the proposed initiatives, or even that of reconciling the implementation of these measures with a global economic context such as that foreseen for 2023. It is hoped that, despite everything, such challenges may end up being overcome, taking into account the benefits for everyone involved, always with the pretext that organizations do not give up on taking these initiatives.

Daniela Ventura, Talent Acquisition, Decode