We take the impact of our work seriously.
Our philosophy is based on the belief that, if we are to be a worthwhile firm, we must have a purpose for our existence. Not only the everyday purpose to earn a 'just' profit, but beyond that, to improve in some way the quality of the community in which we live and work.
We hope that, through the quality of our products and services, and the manner in which we conduct our day to day contacts, with truth, justice and fairness, we do, in some way, communicate that these qualities are renewable each day, making for a better firm, better citizens and better communities.
We strive to serve our customers, our communities and each other to the best of our abilities.
So, we work in partnership with the community, in which we operate, wherever we can.
Social Value is the added value resulting from our projects and activities.
This can be the bench seating or bike shelter left behind for community use after a project is finished, the landscaping around a structure (if accessible to the public) but also economic benefits such as training provided during the project, elements of career advice for students who participated in site tours/visits or the number of apprenticeships created during the construction process.
Social Value can be measured and it can be sustainable – support for the supply chain is not limited to a short period during the life-time of a single project, it is continuous.
Social value is not an altruistic notion – yes, it benefits the community but it benefits Lindum too: A loyal, efficient and motivated supply chain delivers economic benefits (employment, training, local purchases, spending of wages) to the community and Lindum, in turn, can rely on a quality service!
Proper engagement with the social value concept can result in a more efficient delivery of projects; social value is not about spending money it is about making sure that any activity an organisation is involved in delivers maximum benefit to the end-users of the project.
Social value should not be confused with Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR); Social value is an outcome of CSR – when an organisation recognizes that their activities and presence (local workforce, buildings) have an impact on the community in which they operate and that the organisation has a responsibility to make a positive impact/contribution, then it logically follows that the commercial projects/activities in which the organisation is engaged should deliver more than the bricks and mortar, the physical evidence of the project/service - there has to be an added (social) value.
By way of example: Our Business Parks (Lincoln, York, Peterborough) are home to a number of businesses, some in our supply chain, some established, some fledgling start-ups receiving support from Lindum via our Venture Capital Nursery scheme. We invest in SMEs based on our business parks; we help them grow and employ more people, we offer them advice and access to our systems and infrastructure and we offer them reduced rates of rent. Currently for every £1 we invests in our business parks we create an SME social impact of £2.16!
At Lindum, we want to drive social value into projects and create a lasting legacy beyond the completion of the project.
At Lindum, we believe in taking ownership that is why we have our in-house apprenticeship scheme instead of pushing our apprentice requirements onto our supply chain. We do, however, support our supply chain by ensuring that their apprentices can share in the training opportunities we provide for our own trainees)
Our Focus is on three main themes;
Social – engaging with the local community through working with schools, offering support for local charities and taking part in local volunteering programmes.
Economic – directly improve the local economy, through the creation of jobs and use of local suppliers. We support training, take on apprentices and we invest in local businesses.
Environmental – our environmental policy reflects our aspiration for carbon neutral status and focusses on saving energy and reducing our CO2 emissions through the use of sustainable materials.
MEASUREMENT OF SOCIAL VALUE
MEASURE WITH MEANING – working alongside the “Social Value Engine” we can show where our figures come from and how we arrived at them, with true meaning. This system underpins tender submissions, evaluation of individual projects and evaluation of Lindum as an organisation.
Working alongside the University of Lincoln – we partner the University in an action research project which looks at our reputation in the community and how our employees feel about Lindum as an organisation and the Social Value that we deliver.
The results of this research and the responses of our employees, will form a base line and will help us to produce an action plan for the next phase of Social Value integration in our organisation.