Monday, 20 July 2009

CSR in outsourcing survey

The International Association of Outsourcing Professionals (IAOP) is conducting a global survey on the importance of corporate social responsibility (CSR) in outsourcing.

The survey is addressed at outsourcing providers, customers and advisers and aims to get information on their actions and views on CSR, as well as sustainability and environmental responsibility.

The survey will apparently cover things like perceptions about the impact of outsourcing on the environment, climate and society; reporting on CSR practices; business strategy; budgets for CSR activities; standards and codes of conduct; and the importance of CSR issues and policies. The survey will be conducted through July and results will be released this fall.

The IAOP has members from IT outsourcers and advisers including Accenture, ACS, Infosys, Orange Business Services, PA Consulting and Wipro (probably more, but I can't find a list of member companies on their web site).

This survey could be very interesting, depending on what questions are asked. It seems to me that the big question is whether outsourcers expect to see more business come to them as their customers offload CSR responsibility, particularly around climate change. An easy way to cut emissions is to outsource the problem.

This is particularly relevant in the UK, where the Carbon Reduction Commitment (CRC) legislation will draw in many data centre owners who may decide it's easier to outsource. But that means that outsourcers will see their emissions grow (even though they are generally much more energy-efficient), which in turn will mean increased costs (because of lack of rebates under the legislation) and also some negative publicity in the form of league tables. It's probably all inevitable, but none the less uncomfortable.

Comments welcome.

© The Green IT Review

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