A distinction must be made between charity and CSR. Charity refers to a company’s efforts to donate money or resources to an organization or a cause, promoting and allowing employees to volunteer in the community, and the establishment or endorsement of foundations. Conversely, CSR is a concept that involves a company taking into consideration the different stakeholders involved when making a business decision. The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development identified CSR to be an integral part of a company’s value system and strategy (intranet.csreurope.org). For a company to fully integrate CSR, top management must integrate social responsibility into the strategic level of the decision-making process in order to develop a framework for economic decisions made at different levels of the organization’s hierarchy.
The problem that a company will encounter if CSR is not integrated into the organization strategy is that management and employees could bypass social responsibility considerations and CSR becomes personal ethics rather than CSR. To adopt a CSR strategy the organization needs to take the following steps:
- Define CSR for their particular business.
- Understand motivations underlying its commitment.
- Establish policies and goals to achieve CSR.
- Establish measures to monitor their accomplishments in CSR (bsr.org).