For some organisations, corporate social responsibility may feel like somewhat of a box ticking exercise. Here at Tisski, we’ve long been dedicated to making a difference in the tech community and beyond, with monthly charity donations, a commitment to keeping our carbon footprint low and more.
We’ve experienced a notable period of growth over the last two years and with that came recognition that we needed to formalise our social responsibility efforts, welcoming Fiona Trinder as our Social Responsibility Lead in February this year.
We caught up with Fiona to find out how she’s settled into her role and discuss the future of Tisski’s social responsibility.
Thanks very much! It’s been great to join Tisski in this capacity and there’s so much for me to sink my teeth into. It’s a brand-new role for the organisation, and it’s certainly a diverse job, covering everything from equality, diversity and inclusion and staff health and wellbeing to our environmental sustainability, as well as our charitable offerings. I feel like I’m ‘changing hats’ all the time which keeps me on my toes, and I get the chance to interact with colleagues from all areas of the business, which always throws up some fantastic insight.
As part of our charitable work, I was involved in Tisski providing a Microsoft Dynamics 365 solution pro bono for Down Syndrome Cheshire. The solution helps manage the details of the families they work with and their service providers, and has enabled them to take control of their email marketing, too. It’s been great to see the difference this solution made for Down Syndrome Cheshire, and having worked for a charity for many years myself, it’s an area I’m really passionate about. I’d love to see Tisski taking part in more pro bono work; offering up our skills and expertise can really make a world of difference to small charities like these.
The CSR strategy was one of the very first things I worked on, and it focuses on four key areas: responsible business, valuing people, environmental sustainability and supporting our communities. The four strands of the strategy are built around our company values of service excellence, employee empowerment, kindness in our community and caring for the world we live in.
Our new CSR strategy has enabled us to build on our inclusive, ‘family’ ethos. We know that the strength of our business is built on the understanding of our individual strengths and differences, and we’re always mindful and respectful of these. Our different life experiences allow us to learn from each other and appreciate other people’s perspectives, which in turn increases our creativity and productivity as a company and, ultimately, benefits our customers. Recently, the entire organisation took part in Equality, Diversion and Inclusion training and we are now working to set up a focus group of volunteers to ensure that everyone at Tisski feels included and supported.
In terms of our environmental impact, we don’t have a particularly high carbon footprint, but we are embracing the responsibility to reduce our environmental impact, setting real targets to become carbon neutral while developing our strategy for NetZero.
In committing to CSR, we’re ensuring that we’re supporting our people, our stakeholders and the wider community to the very best of our abilities, as well as setting challenging yet achievable targets to improve our environmental sustainability.
While CSR is something jobseekers and public sector customers are increasingly taking an interest in, our CSR initiatives are something we very much want to do, not just something we do to look good or to tick boxes. The factors that play a part in our CSR strategy are important to us all at Tisski and I think that really helps shape who we are as a team and how well we work together to do things with care and compassion as far as we possibly can.
We’re doing so much in the CSR space, yet you almost always feel like you could be doing more, so there are some important goals I’m looking for us to achieve as an organisation in the not-too-distant future. Firstly, I’m working for us to achieve ‘Disability Confident Committed’ as part of a government scheme which encourages employers to think differently about disability and take action to improve how they recruit, retain and develop disabled people.
I’m also working on the development of a programme to encourage children and young people to take an interest in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) subjects, and I’m actively seeking members of the team willing to become STEM ambassadors. Finally, I’m hoping to increase the amount of pro bono work we do for small charities, as the impact this can have is just phenomenal.