--- To enhance the value and performance of procurement and SCM practitioners and their organizations worldwide ---



SSR Graphic: Image of the planet Earth sitting in a grassy field.

Anti-corruption | Diversity and Inclusiveness — Workforce and Supply Base | Environment |
Ethics and Business Conduct | Financial Integrity and Transparency | Global Citizenship | Health and Safety |
Human Rights | Labor Rights | Sustainability

ISM Social Responsibility Program Development Process


Defined below is a high level process for establishing a social responsibility program within your company. We recognize that each company is in a different phase of development, and that corporate culture dictates the best way to proceed with a project like this. Use this tool as a guide and modify it to best fit your own requirements. The important thing to remember as you proceed is to just get started!



ISM Social Responsibility Program Development Process Flow


Part One: Business As Is

Step 1: Assessment

Business Case and Executive Sponsorship

  • To gain commitment from senior level management.
  • Use quantitative data to support your business case when possible.
  • Use the business case examples that best fit your business need (compelling events, business opportunity, corporate culture or personal beliefs).
  • Understand that a company can come into any of these areas first, but at one point or another, you need to pass through all these phases to gain commitment.
  • As part of organizational commitment, make sure to get approval or allocation of resources (people, time, budget).
  • Understand that executive sponsorship doesn't have to be the CPO. Sponsorship should come from the best position to support your efforts. For example, if your company has programs in place for any of the principles, you may want to include current sponsors of those programs. Make sure to look at finance, legal, compliance, environmental, safety or other related areas for sponsorship or co-sponsorship.

Rank Order Principles Based on Assessment and Business Needs

Rank Order Principles Based on Assessment and Business Needs

  • Understand what the risks and opportunities are for your company based on the Seven Principles
  • Make sure to take into account the needs and priorities of your key stakeholders, including suppliers and customers.
  • ISM Social Responsibility Prioritization Tool
    An Excel spreadsheet to prioritize your activities related to social responsibility, initiates and identifies gaps that may require your attention.
    (NOTE: You will need to "Enable Macros" within Excel to use the Prioritization Tool).

Select Top Principle to Address

Step 2: Action Plan

Establish Communication Plan for Selected Principle  

Step 3: Measurement

Evaluate Benchmark Performers in Selected Principles

Evaluate Benchmark Performers in Selected Principles

You may or may not need to benchmark. At this point, you may already have a good idea of what you need to do and how.

  • Regardless of your business needs, look at benchmarks for total social responsibility programs as well as individual principles.
  • Get as much out of your research as you can; understand the potential you have based on what other companies have done.
  • Decide what you would like to adopt from others "as is" or what can be adapted to fit your needs.
  • Look at various organizations to see what standards and process may already exist. Look to ISM, industry groups, Non-Governmental Organizations (NGO's) or others for links to information.
  • Communicate your findings to executive sponsors and other relevant stakeholders.

Go to Part Two: Establishing Goals

Download Complete ISM Social Responsibility Process Flow Chart

Download the ISM Social Responsibility Prioritization Tool
(NOTE: You will need to "Enable Macros" within Excel to use the Prioritization Tool).

Back to the Social Responsibility Initiative Main Page

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