Corporate responsibility

Every Shoosmiths member of staff is able to volunteer one day/annum and we are keen to hear from charities and other community organisations who our staff could volunteer for during the week near to our offices. We want to encourage more of our staff to volunteer in the community and so this is one of our areas of focus this year instead of appointing a national charity partner. Interested? Please contact corporate.responsibility@shoosmiths.co.uk

Corporate responsibility (CR) lies at the heart of our business strategy, and has two main objectives:

  • to more closely align our corporate responsibility activities both to our core business as lawyers and to our business priorities and those of our clients, for the benefit of all our stakeholders
  • to be recognised by all our stakeholders as an organisation which is a responsible corporate citizen in all our relationships

Our 2014/2017 priorities, underpinned by key performance indicators and targets to deliver these aspirations are:

  • A reduction in the impact of our business on the environment
  • Broader selection of opportunities to enable a greater number of colleagues to engage with CR activities including with clients and intermediaries
  • Sustainable relationships with our community partners to ensure long term benefit for the recipient organisation and for us with sustained staff engagement
  • Legal work undertaken with clients to support the CR components of their business plans

Shine: Bright Ideas for Positive Change

Our CR strategy is encapsulated by Shine: Bright Ideas for Positive Change, which is all about how, in the actions we take, we are able to have a positive impact on society. Our approach encapsulates who we are as a firm.

The Shine programme concentrates on four work streams:

  • Community: Building and maintaining sustainable community relationships
    Our approach is based on staff fundraising and partner donations to support charity partnerships, the provision of legal advice on a pro bono basis to individuals and third sector organisations unable to afford legal guidance, staff volunteering in the local community, and other in-kind support such as the donation of used equipment and the use of our meeting rooms. Our local CR champions are the key drivers of our approach in each of our offices.
  • Environment: Demonstrating high standards of environmental responsibility in all our operations and minimising the environmental impacts associated with our activities, products and services
    We implement an environmental management system based on the ISO 14001 standard, work closely with our supply chain to manage and improve our performance, are members of such initiatives as the Mayday Network and the Legal Sector Alliance Acting on Climate Change, and engage and inform our people about the important role they play.

We have produced a case study about our approach to compliance with the UK Energy Savings Opportunity Scheme Regulations 2014 which you can view here.

  • Marketplace: Working collaboratively in the marketplace to evidence best practice aligned with our vision to be the leading national UK law firm famous for its superb client experience
    Acting for our clients includes helping them to deliver their commercial and philanthropic goals to achieve a positive contribution to society. Our breadth of legal expertise is supported by our collaborative approach of undertaking joint projects including the operation of pro bono services, volunteering, fundraising, sporting challenges, workshops and sharing best CR practice.
  • Workplace: Attracting, developing and retaining the best talent by reinforcing our values and providing a stimulating and rewarding working environment
    We ask for, listen to and act on the views of our people; we creatively promote work/life balance and actively promote equality of opportunity.

Shoutback

Our CR activities are featured on our CR blog called Shoutback. You can see what we have been up to on the Shoutback site.

Awards in 2015

  • LawCareers.Net Training and Recruitment Awards - Best Trainer and Commendation for Diversity.
  • Pennies from Heaven Gold Medal in recognition of more than 20% of colleagues donating their payslip pennies to charity.
  • Micro-Tyco Challenge Winner for raising £15,412 to fund 62 £250 micro loans to help transform the lives of 850 people in Africa, Asia and Latin America to help the world's poorest people work their way out of poverty with dignity and respect.

Awards in 2014

  • Business in the Community Responsible Business Award South East Volunteering Business Award in recognition of our volunteering and pro bono programme.
  • Pennies from Heaven gold medal in recognition of more than 20% of colleagues donating their payslip pennies to charity.
  • Payroll Giving Quality Mark Bronze Award.
  • Investors in People Gold Standard re-accreditation - the first top 40 law firm to be re-accredited.
  • Legal Week's Law Student Report Best Graduate Employer 2014.
  • The JobCrowd Top Companies to Work For Award for Top Law Firm (Small Intake).
  • LawCareers.Net Training and Recruitment Award Best Trainer - National/Large Regional Firm.
  • Legal Week's Employee Satisfaction Report topped for 10th consecutive year
  • Top Law Firm for Training Contracts and Vacation Schemes.
  • Best Satisfaction From Training Contract.
  • TargetJobs Inside Buzz rankings topped five categories of overall satisfaction, culture, hours, formal and informal training.
  • All About Law Awards - Top Law Firm and Best for Job Satisfaction.

Awards in 2013

  • Business in the Community East Midlands Local Impact Award for our Business Class programme undertaken by our Nottingham office with Top Valley Academy.
  • Pennies from Heaven gold medal in recognition of more than 20% of colleagues donating their payslip pennies to charity.
  • Payroll Giving Quality Mark Bronze Award.
  • Mortgage Finance Gazette - Customer Customer Service/Treating Customers Fairly for our mental health awareness training programme provided by Recoveries Services Practice Group for second consecutive year.
  • LawCareers.Net Best Trainer- National/Large Regional Firm.
  • Legal Week's Employee Satisfaction Report - top overall and first in the national rankings.
  • TheJobCrowd.com rated Top Law Firm.
  • All About Law Awards - Best Overall Vacation Placement, Best Vacation. Placement for a National Firm and Best Training on a Vacation Placement.

Awards in 2012

  • Mortgage Finance Gazette Awards - Community Services Non lenders Award for our CR strategy which is at the heart of our business strategy.
  • Mortgage Finance Gazette Awards - Customer Service/Treating Customers Fairly for our mental health awareness training programme provided by Recoveries Services Practice Group.
  • LawWorks Pro Bono Award - Best Contribution by a Regional Firm in recognition of pro bono legal advice clinic operated with Northampton and District Citizens Advice Bureau and University of Northampton Law School.
  • BiTC West Midlands Kraft Foods Collaborative Action Award - being one of several companies providing pro bono support for social enterprise Miss Macaroon.
  • Payroll Giving Quality Mark Bronze Award.

Awards in 2011

  • BiTC West Midlands Community Impact Awards - in recognition of our ProHelp work.
  • LawWorks Partnership in Pro Bono Award - in recognition of the monthly pro bono legal advice clinic operated with CommuniCare, an advice centre in East Reading and the University of Reading Law School.
  • Payroll Giving Quality Mark Bronze Award.

Awards in 2007

  • Managing Partners Forum European Practice Management Awards - Best Corporate Citizen.