Social Responsibility in Danish Tech Recruitment

Jade Campbell

Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) is a business approach where companies take responsibility for the impact of their activities on society, the environment and their stakeholders. No matter how small or large a business is, it should have a certain level of social awareness regarding CSR. The following will look at CSR from a recruitment perspective and the impact it has, within specific markets like Scandinavia. This has been based on interviews with tech market professionals and research from the 2021 CPI report and Danish Government initiatives guides.

Denmark has gained international recognition for its progressive social policies, environmental initiatives, and responsible business practices. The Corruption Perception Index 2021 recognised Denmark as one of three countries with highest in the cleanliness from corruption in the public sector scale with 88%. Adopting CSR reinforces Denmark’s positive global reputation and positions Danish companies as leaders in responsible business conduct.

Denmark has regulations and reporting requirements related to CSR and sustainability. Adhering to these regulations is not only a legal obligation but also enhances a company’s credibility and trustworthiness. Since 2008, the Danish Parliament decided that the 1,100 largest Danish companies must account for their work on CSR in their annual reports. Denmark has valued and made a conscious effort to create CSR reports in order to implement importance of looking after one another and the world we live in.

"If there’s any such sense that the company is not taking care of their employees, candidate backlash seems to be quite strong"

Cameron Paterson Talent Recruiter, Parallel Consulting

Candidates who share values regarding CSR are likely to be very particular about the type of company they are willing to work for, and as tech companies are becoming more aware of CSR, they are more likely be a better fit for the candidate’s culture and long-term goals. Denmark scores 5th on the international ranking for social purpose, hence why candidates are more likely to apply for roles at companies based on shared values and work life balance, hence why tech companies have modified their values in line with societal and candidate expectations. “If there’s any such sense that the company is not taking care of their employees, candidate backlash seems to be quite strong”, says Cameron Paterson, a consultant at Parallel who recruits for Denmark explains the importance of companies aligning their roles in favour of candidates too.

Therefore, in a competitive job market, companies that demonstrate a commitment to CSR can attract and retain top talent. With environmental awareness and ethical practice, companies can attract more candidates because they feel more secure working for a company that is not driven entirely by cash flow. Young tech professionals in Denmark often look to work for companies that align with their ethical and social values.

"Danish people have a strong relationship with a duty of care both socially and economically"

Charley Lucas Principal Consultant, Parallel Consulting

According to the Danish Governments Action Plan for Economic Diplomacy, a new focus is sustainability as the focal point of economic diplomacy, implementing a triple bottom line that combines the country’s desire for a strong Danish economy and more jobs with its ambitions for a global green, digital and socially sustainable global transition, “Danish people have a strong relationship with a duty of care both socially and economically”, says Charley Lucas, a Principal Consultant at Parallel who recruits in Denmark.

Much like our clients and candidates in Denmark, CSR is ingrained in our values, as a business we are passionate about staying socially and environmentally aware and  implement corporate social responsibility throughout our approach. After we were certified as a Carbon Neutral business, we decided to be Carbon Neutral Plus. This means that Parallel goes beyond hitting net zero carbon emissions, actually creating environmental benefits by removing additional CO2 from the atmosphere.  We want to give clients the option to choose a recruitment partner who is in line with their sustainability and ESG goals, which is why we reward them with a carbon offsetting scheme.

We are determined to create a legacy of responsible business practices that contribute to a better world for current and future generations by ensuring that our operations are conducted ethically, our business is sustainable, and our partnerships foster positive change. By aligning with like-minded partners, we not only create a harmonious synergy but also contribute to a shared vision of making meaningful contributions to society and the environment.

We also understand how much it means to our candidates and how this reflects on us as a business to be aware of the type of companies that we may be working alongside, clients who prioritize ethics and CSR not only resonates with our values but also amplifies the collective efforts to drive positive change. Such collaborations enable us to be part of a larger movement, where business success goes hand in hand with societal betterment. Through these partnerships, we forge a path towards a more conscientious and responsible business landscape, ultimately shaping a future that benefits both our organizations and the communities we serve.

Denmark has a long-standing tradition of social welfare and equality. The population places high value on social cohesion, environmental sustainability, and ethical business practices which can be seen by the ambitious targets the country has set to reduce carbon emissions and increase the use of renewable energy.

"Danish people are leaders when it comes to sustainability in a better world"

Cameron Paterson Talent Recruiter, Parallel Consulting

Similarly to Parallel, companies in Denmark are committed to sustainability and environmental protection. Companies with CSR initiatives that promote sustainability not only contribute to the national sustainability agenda in Denmark, but also resonate well with the Danish population. The aim of the Danish CSR Reporting Requirement is to “inspire businesses to take an active position on social responsibility and communicate this.” The Government’s CSR efforts are coordinated by an inter-ministerial working group with representatives from departments and agencies who work with CSR and human rights related areas.

Danish candidates have expressed the importance of working for companies who prioritise social awareness and are “leaders when it comes to sustainability in a better world”, says Cameron.  Danish culture places a huge emphasis on its population to want to work for companies that have rich, ethical values. In Denmark, several companies stand out as pioneers in embracing CSR principles and making a positive impact on society and the environment.

A household name, LEGO is deeply committed to responsible sourcing of materials, minimizing its carbon footprint, and promoting creativity in education. Their sustainability efforts extend to their products, packaging, and manufacturing processes.

Given Denmark’s leadership in renewable energy, Vestas wind system is a key player in the wind energy sector. The company’s CSR efforts focus on promoting clean energy solutions and driving the transition to a low-carbon future.

Novozymes is a biotechnology company specializes in enzyme production for various industries. Novozymes are dedicated to sustainability through its innovative products that enable more sustainable manufacturing processes, They have pledged to remove fossil-based ingredients from everyday products and capturing carbon.

Danske Bank emphasises responsible lending and investing, along with initiatives to support financial literacy and inclusion in the communities it serves. Not only are they conscious and socially responsible in their business aims when looking for their customers, but in a sustainability perspective too as they are measuring and lowering their co2 emissions.

These companies exemplify how Danish companies choose to embrace into their Employee Value Proposition and into their brand, demonstrating how to be successful as well as positively contribute to society and the environment. Through their initiatives, they inspire their staff and competitors to embrace similar values and contribute to a more sustainable future.

Danish businesses recognise the significance of engaging with a wide range of stakeholders, including employees, customers, communities, and investors. CSR provides a platform for companies to engage with these stakeholders, building trust and long-term relationships.

At Parallel, we emphasise working with companies that are aware of their impact on society and the environment, we are passionate about finding candidates placements that align with their values. In the tech industry, it is important to focus on DE&I, “we have a social responsibility to include everybody, no matter of race, gender, sexuality”, says Charley “why would we not want to be helping the underrepresented?”, who is running different types of DE & I campaigns with different types of marketing documentation to educate clients about the importance of hiring diversely.

At Parallel we work hard to find candidates placements with companies that align with their values and beliefs and consider it our duty to educate clients on the importance of hiring diversly, this is important for us as it makes an impact on candidates and clients so that they work in harmony together. Working in such a socially, ethically, and environmentally driven region such as Denmark is an absolute pleasure for Parallel.

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