If you’re looking for proof that businesses can do good for the world and still meet their objectives, we’ve put together a list of ten who are doing just that.
From big multinational finance and tech companies to local businesses and beyond – here are 10 purpose-led B2Bs who are making a positive impact by using their skills to help others, getting involved in their local communities and directing vital resources where they’re needed most.
These are great examples of founders and organisations that are ‘tuned in’ to why they’re here and confident about their purpose.
SAP – Walldorf, Germany
SAP is a German multinational corporation that makes enterprise software to manage business operations and customer relations. SAP is headquartered in Walldorf, Baden-Württemberg, Germany, with regional offices in 180 countries.
SAP’s purpose and promise covers five domains: Economy, Society, Environment, Learning for Life and Equality. The business is also focused on improving lives on a global scale through its support of the 17 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.
Recently, SAP CEO Bill McDermott announced the company’s pledge to plant 5 million trees by 2025 ahead of Earth Day.
GBST – Sydney, Australia
GBST is a financial technology company which provides specialist administration and transaction processing software.
Since its founding, GBST has actively supported the Australian and international community including charitable groups like Innocents Relief, Room to Read, the Sir David Martin Foundation and Parkinson’s Victoria.
Instead of printing and sending Christmas cards to its clients each year, GBST makes an annual donation to a different charity; In addition to these direct donations, GBST’s Community Scheme dollar matches staff donations and internal fundraising efforts. As a result, GBST raised and donated a total of $128,000 in 2015.
IRESS – Melbourne, Australia
IRESS is an Australian software company providing services to stockbrokers, financial institutions and research analysts.
It’s also the first company to hire a refugee directly through the Talent Beyond Boundaries initiative.
Tarek Mulla joined the team in Melbourne as a software engineer – making him the first refugee candidate in the world to relocate for work through the Talent Beyond Boundaries initiative.
Beyond this, IRESS wants to make a difference to the communities in which its people live and work. Staff have donned their trainers and t-shirts for Run for the Kids, organised a Red Cross blood donation drive, relaxed their casual dress code even further on the Reach for a Dream Slipper Day and donated 11 libraries through the Seeds of Africa Foundation as part of the company’s CSR community programme.
Link Group – Sydney, Australia
Link Group delivers comprehensive data and information solutions for companies, large asset owners and trustees across the globe.
The business has a proud record of being heavily involved in the community. Since becoming a public company Link Group has taken an increasingly strategic approach to its Corporate Social Responsibility program, which is managed by a dedicated CSR Officer.
Link Group’s people are supported to take an active involvement in a range of community initiatives across five key focus areas: education, health, disadvantage (physical and economic), environment and cultural inclusiveness (with a commitment to protecting the native history of a region).
Talent Nation – Melbourne, Australia
Executive search and recruitment specialist Talent Nation is making an impact through purpose-driven sustainability and environmental recruitment.
The ethos behind Talent Nation is to build strong communities of talent within its core areas of focus; environmental, sustainability, energy, health, safety & wellbeing and social enterprise/not-for-profit recruitment.
Talent Nation works with a who’s who of NGOs and ethical companies, and – as well as being a certified BCorp – supports a number of charities.
Abergeldie Complex Infrastructure – Sydney, Australia
Abergeldie’s aim is to build better communities. The company can do that on a practical level – by building infrastructure such as water and sewage treatment plants, bridges and walkways – but it takes the idea a step further.
Since Abergeldie started in 1994, it has always adopted a policy of giving back to the community. Staff are offered volunteering opportunities with causes such as the Western Sydney Vinnies Van and the CEO Sleepout. Abergeldie has also sent whole work crews out to help communities, such as during the Brisbane floods in 2011 and the Poppy Park event in Penrith for the ANZAC Day centenary.
From humble, hopeful beginnings in 2005, Inspired Adventures has since developed and managed over 500 worldwide charity challenge events for its charity partners, raising over $32.8 million dollars for life-changing causes and engaging more than 6,000 community fundraisers.
The company was inspired by a chance meeting its founder Justine Curtice had with Palden Gyatso, a former Tibetan political prisoner in 2001, while travelling through India.
Sefa (Social Enterprise Finance Australia) helps purpose-driven organisations understand and assess finance solutions and find the right investors to back them – unlocking social impact through finance.
The company also develops innovative funding models so it’s easy for investors to support purpose-driven organisations.
To date, Sefa has unlocked more than $80 million worth of impact funding.
Spatial Vision – Melbourne, Australia
Spatial Vision was founded in 1999 to solve spatial, social and environmental challenges for businesses and government departments using geographic information systems (GIS).
You might have seen the company’s work if you’re a budding citizen scientist – apps like Frog Census and the Algae Scum Identification App help users identify and report sightings in their local environments, while more broadly, Spatial Vision helps all kinds of organisations unlock the power of their data to solve business challenges and serve their customers better.
But the company is very firm about its environmental and social values, and won’t take any job that it deems to contradict them.
“Underneath our value set there’s a set of factors impinging on the type of project we enjoy and the type of project we want to be involved in,” says Glenn Cockerton, Managing Director.
“We’re looking at achieving better environmental outcomes, better outcomes for people and giving them access to information they might need – social justice type angles – as well as economic and more general societal wellbeing.
Those values have long underpinned the nature of our operations and the way we have run the company and inform the choices we’ve made along the way.”
Find out more about Spatial Vision’s purpose in our interview with the directors for our ‘People with Purpose’ series.
EEK & SENSE – Sydney, Australia
EEK & SENSE is the creator of the Global Leadership Wellbeing Survey (GLWS) – an evidence-based wellbeing tool backed by over 50 years combined professional experience in organisational psychology, leadership development, executive coaching and capability design initiatives.
The GLWS delivers deep insights into what shapes and sustains a leader’s success and happiness at work and at home.
It helps leaders and their teams tackle wellbeing priorities head-on, providing expert advice, leadership coaching, support and encouragement every step of the way.
“[GLWS] was born out of a very clear need, and a very strong personal passion for helping people at work,” says Audrey McGibbon, co-founder of EEK & SENSE.
“In my own small way, I knew what it was like to be doing a big job, feeling stressed with too many demands on your time at the same time as having a family. I really related to that. And they were dealing with it in much more amplified ways than I ever had to deal with.
“And frankly, it’s still a position I hold today – enormous empathy and respect for the people that are in these executive roles. I honestly don’t know how they do it and stay sane.”
Find out more about EEK & SENSE’s purpose in our interview with Audrey for our ‘People with Purpose’ series.