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Case study: Corporate REDsponsibility at Ogilvy Healthworld UK

Ogilvy Healthworld (OHW) UK has developed a unique approach to managing corporate responsibility, tailored to the needs of a healthcare communications company. Known as Corporate REDsponsibility (after Ogilvy’s signature colour), this includes targets and policies to support WPP’s objectives, such as a commitment to give up to 0.4% of total revenue to charity and a 20% CO2 reduction target by 2010.

Engaging employees is a key part of the program. The agency published its first internal Corporate REDsponsibility report in 2007 summarising its policies and performance. This was distributed to all employees in the London, Oxford and New York offices.

Employees can share ideas about social and environmental issues and find out about events and fundraising activities on the Corporate REDsponsibility intranet site. The agency is also planning an environmental awareness day for 2008.

OHW encourages employees to volunteer their time to support good causes by offering them one paid day off each year. The company has developed a long-term pro bono partnership with Carers UK, a charity which provides support and campaigns for rights for carers. Employees use their healthcare communications skills to benefit the charity.

Corporate REDsponsibility also helps OHW stand out from the crowd and win more business. CR is becoming increasingly important to clients - 40% ask for information on social and environmental issues as part of the pitch process. The agency plans to include a revised version of its internal CR report in pitch documents and on its website.

Highlights from the report include:

  • In the first half of 2007, the London office recycled 22,770kg of paper, 1,800 kg of glass and 3,360kg of cups.
  • The Oxford office recycled 3,240kg of paper.
  • No ethical complaints received against any client campaigns.
  • £100,000 invested in training and wellbeing.