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Employee engagement in CSR in Bulgaria

Highlights from a survey commissioned by CAF Bulgaria

August 2010

Background to research
Aim
The aim of the study was to gain an overall understanding of employee engagement with and participation in Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) programmes run by companies in Bulgaria. Particular areas of focus included; types of CSR programme, level of activity or participation, barriers to running or participating in projects.

Methodology
The study focussed on medium and large companies (mostly from banking and finance, telecommunications, pharmaceuticals, energy and fast moving consumer goods). From a base of 46 companies, a total of 154 in-depth interviews were conducted, 46 of which were with managers based in Public Relations, Human Resources or CSR departments and the 108 with general employees. Fieldwork was conducted in October and November 2009 by ALPHA Research.

The 5 types of employee CSR engagement
1. General volunteering (outside of working hours) including activities such as planting trees, repairing and decorating, improving the urban environment. 2. Working overtime and donating the earnings; this work is usually paid double or even triple-time. 3. Fundraising through payroll giving, collection boxes or donating proceeds from sales etc.; this activity often increases around holiday times like Christmas and Easter. 4. Participation in national volunteering schemes (mainly blood donation) facilitated or supported by the company. 5. CSR incorporated into everyday company behaviour, e.g. recycling, cycle to work schemes, reducing electricity consumption.

The 2 Bulgarian company approaches to CSR
1. CSR connected to the company’s business, for example manufacturers supporting consumer protection; car and transport companies supporting road safety. 2. CSR not necessarily connected to the company but popular with the public and “in fashion”, for example, cleaning up waterways, planting trees,...