The Warehouse Group Ltd is a typical half-hearted company that does not do what it preaches in the area of Corporate Social Responsibility. From the Warehouse Annual Report and Social and Environment Report 2009, I found that the company is not only focusing on its financial performance, but also on social and environmental external effects. A critical analysis of this reporting practice suggests that the Warehouse is not truly responsible socially and environmentally but more a public relation exercise of the company.
The Warehouse was established in 1982 to operate some discount stores. The company has over 7,600 employees in the all network stores and has 253 stores through New Zealand from Kataia in the North Island to Invercargill in the South island. The company has operated 86 Warehouse stores, 46 Warehouse Stationary stores and has a chocolate factory, which supplies product to the Warehouse. The Warehouse is a retailer that is offering a range of products, including household items, men’s, women’s, children’s wear, entertainment, technology, health and beauty, gardening, grocery, craft, music to sporting. The Warehouse stationary is offering stationary, office furniture, office products and technology. The head office of the Warehouse is located in North Shore, Auckland, New Zealand. The main company’s strategy is to offer the lowest prices as possible for their customers.
The Warehouse is trying to inform its stakeholders that the company is exercising CSR activities. Through these activities, the company is trying to become socially and environmentally responsible as an active and considerate member of the community. The company’s philosophy says that people first and thus they focus on customers, team members, suppliers, shareholders, and the community. Another company’s philosophy is taking care of the environments. Their main strategy is a ‘zero waste’ by trying to minimize waste and supporting the practice of recycling. In short, they inform the stakeholders that they try to meet customers’ needs and in the same time are trying to support society and environment, as stated in the Warehouse Annual Report 2009: “Make a difference to people’s life by making the desirable affordable and supporting New Zealand’s communities and environment”
The Warehouse is using multiple media to promote the company as a corporate social responsible entity. The media are: the website, the Annual Report 2009 and the Social and Environment Report 2009. The information provided by the company in these media is roughly the same set of information on their contribution to and performance on society, environment and financial aspects. The information reveals what they do, what they are trying to achieve and what they have already achieved.
In these media, they show how they deal with their customers, employees, society at large and the environment. In terms of customer aspects, they show how they serve customers and what programs that they implement to satisfy the customers and to support the interest of customers. In terms of employee aspect, they show the development programs implemented for their employees, the number of employees worked in the company and their level of wages and salaries. In terms of social aspect, they support local schools and national organizations by contributing funding to these organizations. Lastly, in terms of environmental aspects, in addition to zero waste and recycling programs, they also how show how they support the New Zealand eco – labeling scheme and community programs to assist social and sustainable development in New Zealand.
On the base of the explanation above we can see very clear who the stakeholders are. The Warehouse shows that they are trying their best in building relationship with customers, employees, suppliers, society and shareholders. To become a part of a society the company has to show their publications that they are making something happening and that they do...
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