Our focus on community

BUILDING THRIVING COMMUNITIES
WHERE PEOPLE WANT TO LIVE AND WORK

TOGETHER WE CAN MAKE CHANGE HAPPEN

By investing in communities through tackling the issues that affect the lives of their workforces, businesses can help to build strong communities.  In turn, the community can then support business. 

Business in the Community’s (BITC) Place campaign builds trust between business and society. The campaign brings together businesses and their neighbours in communities across the United Kingdom. Find out more about the Place pilots that have taken place in Blackpool and Wisbech.

BITC supports communities through enabling larger businesses to remove barriers to small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), helping them grow and creating jobs leading to sustainable local economies and vibrant communities.

Small businesses are the backbone of the UK economy. In 2019 there were 5.82 million small businesses (with 0 to 49 employees), 99.3 per cent of total businesses in the UK1. SMEs account for three fifths of the employment and about half of turnover in the UK private sector2. These same businesses are at risk of being disproportionately impacted by disruptive events such as a fire, flood or cyber-attack. Without proper preparation, any one of these events could result in business failure and potentially life-changing consequences for owners and employees.

BITC builds thriving communities through two mechanisms:

Maximising resource productivity in a circular economy

BITC’s Business Emergency Resilience Group (BERG), was created by His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales. The group helps UK businesses and communities prepare for, respond to, and recover from emergencies. Convened by BITC, BERG is an influential network of UK business leaders and strategic partners that include national charities and UK government departments. BERG supports small businesses because they are fundamental to the success of the UK economy. SMEs face a disproportionally greater number of disruptive events such as a fire, flood or cyber-attack. Without proper preparation, any one of these events could result in business failure and potentially life-changing consequences for owners and employees.

BITC’s Business Emergency Resilience Leadership Team mobilises support for small businesses to better prepare for, respond to, and recover from business disruptions such as flooding and cyber-attacks.

Place

A place-based approach involves multiple partners working together to create thriving communities. The approach means: understanding and identifying; co-designing; acting; reviewing; scaling and customising.

BITC’s Place Leadership Team unlocks the collaborative potential of business to strengthen communities around the UK. It is chaired by Steve Rowe, Chief Executive Officer, Marks and Spencer.

Global Goals

The UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) also known as the Global Goals underpin all BITC’s work; inspiring, engaging and challenging businesses to be purpose-driven, taking practical action and mobilising their collective strength to deliver against the Global Goals.

BITC’s Responsible Business Map helps companies to navigate and contribute to Global Goals. The map identifies the issues businesses need to address to achieve long-term financial value, enabling both society and the planet to thrive. The Responsible Business Map also explains the actions and outcomes which BITC expects businesses to aim for against each issue.

BITC’s Global Goals Leadership Team drives business to deliver on the SDGs.

References
  1. Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS); (2019); Business population estimates for the UK and regions: 2019 statistical release (HTML); Published 10 October 2019; available at https://www.gov.uk
  2. ibid