Oaks Consultancy launch research into impact of COVID-19 on CSR and charity support

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Research into the impact of COVID-19 on corporate social responsibility and support for charities seeks to identify immediate challenges and future opportunities for partnerships.

Birmingham’s corporate and charity sectors are being asked to share how COVID-19 will impact their relationships immediately and longer term. A subsequent report will publish findings and recommendations for organisations to create mutually beneficial partnerships that also contribute to the region’s recovery from the pandemic.

Those with a role in managing corporate social responsibility (CSR) initiatives, fundraising and relationships between corporate and charity organisations are being asked to share their view of the impact COVID-19 will have on engagement.

In these unprecedented time of COVID-19, new emergency grant opportunities for charities have emerged and funders are being more flexible with applicants. However, the charity sector is uncertain if corporate organisations are placing less focus on their CSR strategies and subsequently willingness to engage with charities is diminishing.

To gain a greater understanding of whether this perception is correct and the future implications feedback is being gathered by two surveys – one for corporates and one for charities – to understand the impact of COVID-19 on CSR strategy.

Powered by Jewellery Quarter’s Oaks Consultancy, the results will enable a review of engagement levels pre pandemic, the initial impact on relationships/planned activity, and the future outlook. Oaks will report on trends, identify challenges and opportunities, and evidence the mutually beneficial value of partnerships, particularly in addressing the impact of the current context to charities, businesses and wider society. In addition, SimkissGuy Recruitment will comment on the effectiveness of companies utilising CSR strategy to attract and retain talent and engender wider team engagement.

Luke Southall, Managing Director at Oaks explains why they have commissioned the research:

Charities are on the frontline in this pandemic, fighting alongside the NHS for the lives of our most vulnerable family and community members amidst an international funding crisis. Ongoing relationships with business are a crucial enabler for the large majority of charities in the UK and globally, so it’s vitally important that we understand and learn from the ways these relationships have been impacted by Covid-19 – positive or negatively.”

Rebecca Simkiss, Managing Director at SimkissGuy adds why they are championing the report:

“Supporting local charities and initiatives has been an integral part of the SimkissGuy Recruitment ethos since our launch in 2013. We have always wanted to do what we can to support those who need help and so not only do the Directors hold several voluntary non-executive Board positions, but we ensure that all members of the team dedicate at least one day a month to supporting local good causes and projects. As a result we know that everyone who is part of SimkissGuy not only has the chance to develop key skills away from their day jobs, but are truly engaged with the wider city and gain a great deal of personal satisfaction and achievement from knowing that they are playing their part in supporting our amazing region.”

The surveys will close on Thursday 7 May 5pm with the report being published in the following weeks to provide real-time recommendations. Complementary to this, the data will be used to match-make businesses to charities based on CSR interests and support needed.

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