Social Impact : Benchmarking

Benchmarking Tool

The Raising the Bar benchmarking tool measures your company's activities across four key areas which are:

  • Education
  • Economy
  • Environment
  • Community

This tool can be used within your organisation to help you assess your social impact. The answers you provide will be presented back to you in the form of a spider chart. Over time we will be able to compare your impact assessment to those of all other businesses or to those companies with similar demographics (number of employees, broad location, sector, etc). This will allow you to target future activities and aid you in meeting your social impact goals.


Businesses play a hugely important role in supporting their local economy. This category identifies the role you play in being a good corporate citizen.

As part of the measure we are looking to hear about the following

  • Recruitment practices, do you deliberately target local people
  • Do you offer work placements, internships and apprenticeships?
  • What procurement practices do you operate
  • What payment terms do you offer and do they give preferential terms to small or new firms?
  • Do you represent your sector and lobby on business issues in your local area?
  • Do you encourage your suppliers to act responsibly in line with your own company values?


Increasingly Governments across the globe are looking to the business community to provide leadership on environmental issues. Furthermore consumers are taking greater note of the impact of their purchasing and asking more questions about provenance and sustainability.

It is now widely recognised that we cannot continue to use resources as if they were limitless and so this measures seeks to identify the steps you are taking across the following areas

  • How are you managing your energy usage?
  • What is your company's attitude to the waste you generate either as part of your production process or simply from having people in your organisation, do you have recycling policies?
  • How seriously do take your responsibility to protecting the environment and how is this measured?
  • Are you proud of your working environment?


Employers play a significant role in their local communities, by providing jobs and opportunities to enhance the lives of those around them. But companies often go over and above simply providing employment, very many strive to support neighbourhoods and the people within them in, they genuinely want to be part of their communities.

This section seeks to identify the role you play in the following

  •  Do you support and raise funds for local or national charities?
  • Do you provide facilities and resources to local groups?
  • Do your employees volunteer time for good causes?
  • Are you willing to share your technical know how and expertise?
  • What role do you see your company playing in the local community and are you a good neighbour?


There is good evidence to show that meaningful engagement between school pupils and the world of work has life changing impact, the OECD reports that "When career guidance services are effective, they can be expected to have a positive influence on the educational and employment outcomes of young people".

This measure asks companies to map out the time they commit towards education, and includes the following areas

  • School support including financial support, bursaries and sponsorship
  • Careers advice and guidance
  • School governance
  • Provision of work experience and internships
  • Provision of sector skills advice
  • Provision of equipment and other resources
  • Bringing students into your workplace
  • Recruiting apprentices

Benchmarking Tool

As the organisers of Raising the Bar the West & North Yorkshire Chamber has spoken with the region's businesses to discuss ways in which to improve the tracking of their work on social impact within the wider community.

This has resulted in the development of the 'Raising the Bar Benchmarking Tool', the aim of which is to help businesses calculate the impact of the work they do in the region and beyond. There are four categories to Raising the Bar and each one can be measured in our new Benchmarking Tool.

To access our Benchmarking Tool please click the link and register with your company details. You will then have 4 sections to complete, one for each category.

The questions require evidence to support your questions and you can save your work and come back to it when you are ready.

When all 4 sections have been completed in full you will have the opportunity to see your results and enter the awards.