Technology, People And The Planet: Future Leap Network Members, Digital Detox, On The B Corp Journey

Here at Future Leap we support our Network of conscientious businesses in developing their sustainability, and are dedicated in educating and promoting practices that bring about positive change.

A new and exciting movement is currently taking place being driven by B Corp, a certification for high standards of social and environmental performance, as well as transparency and accountability.

B Corps harness the power of business to create a positive impact for not only stakeholders, but employees, customers, communities and the planet as a whole.

Future Leap Network members, Digital Detox, provide an insight into their B Corp journey and the work that goes in to this certification process.

Digital Detox – a humanity-led digital product agency, specialising in design, full stack development, startup tech partnerships and digital transformation.

At Digital Detox, our mission is to harness technology to benefit people and the planet. We measure this using our three-pillar approach.  

As a humanity-led business, becoming B Corp was the logical next step on our journey – to drive us forward in building a better business and allow us to measure ourselves on how we perform against the framework. Its very purpose of making a difference for good aligns perfectly with ours. Becoming a B Corp will also build trust, capability and value in our organisation.  

B Corp status

We are thrilled to have submitted our application to become B Corp certified a couple of months ago and we are waiting to hear back on how we’ve done.  

While it’s no small task, it is doable, even for smaller companies like ours. And you don’t need to invest a lot of money to achieve the accreditation especially if your business is already living the ‘B Corp’ life – through your pay scale, team diversity, work flexibility, sustainability commitments and so on.

We are proud of the progress we’ve made and wanted to share our journey with you alongside a few tips that might help you along the way.

The B impact assessment

Step one is quite simple – to complete the B Corp impact assessment. Its goal is to get you thinking about the things that matter and its outcome is to provide you with a set of steps to follow in order to adopt this new way of thinking and operating.

We submitted our initial assessment last year without doing any prep work and answered the questions honestly. We’ve got a score of 59 points, but you need a minimum of 80 across all impact areas to be able to proceed to the next step.

This was very helpful as by answering the questions honestly, we were able to see tasks that we could do to further raise our score and gained some further clarity in the next steps we needed to take to align our business operations with that of B Corp.

We realised that we were already doing a lot of the B Corp practices and initiatives internally, but they weren’t written down, so they needed to be formalised.

The journey from A to B Corp

With 2021 being the year that we’ve grown exponentially as a business, our team was very busy with client work, so we had to strike the right balance between people, projects and the planet.

That’s why we decided to get someone on board to help us speed up the accreditation process, offering this opportunity to someone eager to learn and that would also have an impact on their career.

So we hired a full-time intern, Faustas, who alongside our Finance Controller, Marta, coordinated the whole process and put the application together in under three months. The whole team had to step in at some point, from internal stakeholders, such as the Sustainability Committee to all employees who were asked to complete various surveys to help with gathering the data needed.

The whole journey was more of a mindset change than anything else by getting the team to understand that this is how we run our business now and reflect that in our work.

What’s changed?

The assessment evaluates how your company’s operations and business model impact your workers, community, environment, and customers. So if you need to change anything to prove your business is meeting the highest standard of verified performance, it would be around these main impact areas.

Here are just a few of the new measures and changes we had to introduce at DD:

1. Workers

One of the best parts that came out of the B Corp application was the decision to partner with Bippit and help our employees enjoy financial freedom. Bippit provides each of our team with their own financial coach, to help them be happier, healthier and wealthier. You can read more about this groundbreaking service and how we use it at DD here.

2. Community

During the application process, we reached out to a few B Corp companies to ask for feedback and share recommendations. We’ve also attended quite a few events, which are the best way to get introduced to the B Corp community and learn more about the framework and initial steps.

We are actually speaking at the next event organised by Future Leap – Be the change: B Corp, where we’ll be sharing our journey with likeminded businesses. This is a hybrid event, so you can join us either in person or from the comfort of your home to find out how you can become a B Corp business.

3. Environment

On the sustainability side, we adopted the Environmental Management System (EMS) framework that helps companies to achieve their environmental goals through consistent evaluation, review and improvements. One of the objectives we set ourselves is to audit our current suppliers and opt for more sustainable ones. So we’ve put together a supplier code of conduct that follows environmental and social criteria to take into consideration when choosing suppliers in the future.

To self-assess the environmental impact of our organisation’s activities and to track the EMS compliance we will be using GRI – an international framework for sustainability reporting.

Some of our company’s sustainability targets for next year are:

  • 5% overall carbon footprint reduction
  • 5% carbon reduction per employee
  • Offset all of our carbon emissions in 2022

4. Customers

Based on the B Corp framework, we introduced a Values Matrix for our potential clients that involves an initial screening of the company, as well as discovering if the project is aligned to our internal business values. A part of the matrix includes the client’s B Corp status/aspirations and sustainability behaviour, allowing us to streamline and transition our sales process towards a values-led model.

We’ve applied. Now what?

The hard work is done – we have set up the framework and we’re just waiting to hear back if we’ve been successful. But substantial change is yet to happen.

Now that we have everything in place, we’re going to use it to report on our performance using real data. We will be using the B Corp framework model for our internal reporting with our main pillars being employees, community, environment, finance, customers, and delivery.

We don’t want to be in the position where we get the B Corp certification to tick the box and get the nice logo. We want to implement these changes to become a better business.

Written by Narcisa Lupu – Marketing Executive at Digital Detox.

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