•  
  • 14
  • 110
  •  
  •  

One is an insurer with a national and international profile.

The other is a small York enterprise with a big vision. And together they have made business history.

The global insurer is Hiscox, a York landmark thanks to its shiny Peasholme Green HQ. This week it became the first business to receive an accreditation for its outstanding commitment to ethical and responsible business practice, awarded by York-based certification body Bright Ethics.

Founded in 2012, Bright Ethics has developed a national standard for ethical businesses.

Delivered in partnership with The Centre for Assessment – specialists in certification, accreditation and training services – the Bright Ethics Certification recognises

  • how far organisations have demonstrated a real and tangible commitment to reducing their impact on the planet
  • how they are increasing their positive impact on people and communities.

Carbon neutral and people positive

Hiscox scored well across Bright Ethics’ four key certification areas of

  • values and leadership
  • environmental sustainability
  • positive workplaces
  • and sourcing with integrity.

Hiscox’s commitment to carbon neutrality and a sustainable supplier chain helped it earn the accreditation.

Workplace policies such as active welfare monitoring, flexible working, commitment to employee diversity, as well as paid internships and work experience, were all recognised too.

Assessor, Mick Lynch, commented in his report that “Hiscox should be congratulated on their structured approach to areas such as its environmental policy and employee welfare, as well as the commitment of all staff in their York office”.

A glass act – the award-winning Hiscox building. Photograph: Timothy Soar/Hiscox

Bright Ethics director Bethan Vincent said:

We are very proud to have worked with Hiscox as part of our York pilot.

They were able to evidence clear ethical practices in all areas of assessment and must be applauded for their ongoing commitment to creating real positive change.

‘Part of our DNA’

“Doing the right thing whether it concerns the environment, how we treat our employees and suppliers, servicing our clients or how we impact the community around us is an intrinsic part of our business DNA,” said Phil Thorn, head of direct home insurance at Hiscox

We’re very pleased that this certification from Bright Ethics recognises the efforts of all our staff in making the office a welcoming, inspiring and ethical place to work.

Consumer demand for companies to demonstrate their social credentials above and beyond paper policies is growing.

A business doesn’t have to be a non-profit or social venture to make a positive contribution to society and also develop an environment where employees feel like their work matters.

Hiscox has been ahead of the curve as an early adopter of the York-based standard. Meanwhile Bright Ethics has just signed a partnership with Manchester based The Centre for Assessment to bring the certification to the rest of the UK.