British Standards International (BSI) has recently published two new standards to help manufacturing, construction and mining companies become more competitive in the global marketplace. BS 11000-1 Collaborative Business Relationships and BS ISO 26000 Corporate Social Responsibility offer the ability to standardize initiatives related to collaborative partnerships and corporate social responsibility goals within and between companies.
As with all relationships, a framework of boundaries is crucial to protect both parties involved and to secure mutual satisfaction. Designed to build off the PAS 11000 standard, BS 11000-1 Collaborative Business Relationships will address a wider audience, including small and medium-sized enterprises. The new standard equips businesses with the means to assess internal objectives, select the most suitable partners, attain clear “additional” value, and stick to an effective dispute and exit resolution. The standard is designed to strengthen the foundations of strategic partnering by relationship management, the sharing of knowledge among businesses, and the promotion of mutually agreed upon objectives.
“People have been collaborating in various ways for many years, but with recent difficult market conditions, organizations increasingly need to look at new ways of diversifying and partnering,” said Antony Barrett, BSI market engagement manager. “In some instances the nature of the work absolutely requires organizations to partner effectively, and we’re now seeing businesses pitching together rather than individually. This standard can really help to set them apart from the competition.”
BS 11000-1 is the first of two-parts. BS 11000-2, due in early 2011, will provide case studies designed to show implementation of the collaborative framework.
Another new standard, BS ISO 26000 Corporate Social Responsibility, offers detailed, user-friendly guidance on a widespread, international scale. For the first time, businesses across the globe can share the universal criteria of social responsibility and ethical business transactions.
“This standard will enable businesses to bring together best practice in terms of workforce, customers, neighbours fair trade and the all important demands on our natural resources and our climate,” said Mike Low, BSI director of standards. “Through the BSI standards process, we have…excellent input from stakeholders to ensure this is a practical and effective approach.”
The benefits of BS ISO 26000 include: improved reputation management for the business; increased security of long-term customer, client and employee loyalty; increased efficiency; lower amounts of wasted energy and waste removal fees; capacity to adapt to new laws or restrictions; and improved overall competitiveness of the business.