The ECA – the UK’s largest trade association for electrical, electrotechnical and engineering contractors – and the Considerate Constructors Scheme carried out the survey, which was completed by almost 150 businesses during April and May this year.
Fifty-one per cent of those who took part said that staff retention and recruitment was improved by involving themselves in CSR.
The report also noted that 67 per cent of respondents highlighted “improved customer or client relationships” as another business benefit of CSR work.
Forty-five per cent of businesses currently engaging with CSR said that they measured health and safety outcomes to help assess their success, while 39 per cent monitored environmental impacts.
Paul Reeve, ECA director of business, said: “These new findings highlight the key role of CSR in helping a business to retain and recruit staff, improve relationships with clients, and achieve process changes and cost savings.
“Increasingly, companies that are communicating effectively with their key stakeholders, and delivering social and environmental value, are seeing direct – in addition to indirect – business benefits”.
Edward Hardy, Considerate Constructors Scheme chief executive, said: “It is very encouraging to see that over half of survey respondents are realising the benefits of CSR across their organisation. There is, however, much more to be done in achieving greater engagement throughout construction and its related industries.
“We must continue to work together to raise standards to ensure that every organisation is fully engaged with CSR. This can be achieved through registration with the Considerate Constructors Scheme, which clearly demonstrates how an organisation is proving commitment to CSR for the benefit of the workforce, the local community and the environment.”
Half of businesses claimed that developing CSR initiatives was “too time consuming”. Respondents also cited “lack of knowledge”, financial constraints and a lack of guidance as barriers to engaging with CSR.
The survey described CSR as “a voluntary, ethical and strategic approach to action and stakeholder engagement, in support of improved environmental and societal impacts. The aim is to produce value for both the organisation and the wider society in which it operates”.