Corporate Social Responsibility
“We are fully committed to contributing to the positive transformations of our economies and societies. We want to provide innovative, responsible solutions with a positive impact.”
Frédéric Oudéa, CEO, Societe Generale
Our Corporate Social Responsibility Strategy In The UK
We believe that everyone should have equal access to career opportunities, and thus have the chance to reach their potential. We also believe that a diverse workforce is key to a thriving business.
So, we’ve focused our CSR strategy on making the banking sector more accessible to individuals who are under-represented in financial services - BAME, women, and those from low-socio economic backgrounds. We’re benchmarking our programmes against the Sustainable Development Goals in alignment with the bank’s priority – to contribute to the positive transformations of our economies and societies - and we are centring them around the skills development of these groups to increase employment opportunities for them in both the banking sector and beyond.
Through this, we aim to enhance the diversity of our workforce, as well as empower our staff to contribute to our overall goal by sharing their own skills and experiences, so that together, we can make a positive impact on the community.
Programmes And Partnerships
Our Fundraising Charity Partner: CLIC Sargent
Since March 2018, we have been working with CLIC Sargent - our staff-selected strategic charity partner.
When cancer strikes young lives, CLIC Sargent helps families limit the damage it causes beyond their health. They know young cancer patients’ education, employment and futures can falter. CLIC Sargent provides specialist support to guide each young cancer patient and their family. They fight tirelessly for them, individually, locally and nationally, so they can focus on the important things, like getting well.
Over the last three years, we have been working together to ensure a young person’s potential to reach their education or career aspirations isn’t limited by a cancer diagnosis.
Through the generosity of our staff, company donations and matching from the SG UK Foundation, we’re aiming to raise £1 million for the charity. This has funded the Thrive, Not Just Survive grant programme which was launched in October 2018 to support young cancer patients aged between 14 and 24-years-old to get their education or career ambition back on track. Our funds also enabled the completion of a new research project, delivered by young people, that sought to understand more about the impact of cancer on employment and how employers can best support their staff impacted by it.
"At Societe Generale we have a strong belief in supporting our charity partners beyond fundraising, helping them to build their capacity and grow as an organisation."
Ben Higgins, Head of Human Resources for the UK and Ireland.
Volunteering: Sharing Our Talents, Building Our Skills
We have a talented, knowledgeable team of employees who are enthusiastic to share their wealth of expertise and experience to positively impact our local communities. So, we offer all employees 24 hours per year of volunteering time, which can be used to undertake a personal volunteering activity, or to access the range of CSR programmes organised centrally.
There are opportunities for employees at all levels to share their time, skills and experience; from one-off employability, enterprise and business planning workshops, to ongoing primary tutoring, adult literacy sessions, mentoring and trusteeships.
In 2019, over 11,500 hours were volunteered by our staff supporting thousands of beneficiaries from our neighbouring communities including pupils, young people, local residents, charities, social enterprises and schools.
We recognise that employees can also enhance their skills and personal development through volunteering. In fact, 80% of staff in our annual volunteer survey attributed improved communication, leadership and people management skills to their involvement in CSR, while more than 70% said they had improved problem solving, time management and adopted new ways of working. Finally, we know that the majority of staff (92%) staff feel an increased sense of wellbeing and happiness as a result of their participation in CSR activity.
Widening Access To The Banking Sector
We are committed to supporting people from all backgrounds to access the financial services and through our social mobility programmes, we encourage and support young people to access alternative routes into banking. Through summer internships, we have provided work placement and training opportunities as well as creating a diverse talent pipeline for the bank.
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