Introducing Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) – what is it?
As a business, our operations and services have a major impact on our local community and environment. Via our interaction with employees, clients, suppliers and others we can make a real difference.
CSR means managing this impact so as to add value to the company and to increase wider economic and social well being, now and in the future. CSR not only offers us the chance to make a difference but we can also create local goodwill.
We at Tallents recognise that responsible business practice helps develop our personal and professional skills, helps broaden the perspectives of our employees and helps to reinforce a sense of local community.
For Tallents this means that we are conscious of our impact on our local communities and seek to enhance the economic and social environment on our doorsteps.
The Senior Solicitors have agreed to formalise CSR and Alistair Millar will be responsible for managing its development.
Benefits to our staff
- Generating staff commitment and goodwill
- Developing stronger team working skills
- Providing opportunities for staff to develop their other skills, by working with different communities and cultures, sometimes in unfamiliar situations
- Support from the Practice for the causes they want to support
Benefits to the community
- Sums raised for local charities are boosted by “matched” funds from the firm
- Organisations are able to quantify the time given to them in kind, in monetary sums and use this to lever more money from their funding bodies
Benefits to Tallents Solicitors
- Demonstrating and communicating a commitment to Corporate Social Responsibility both to staff and the general public
- Generating goodwill with our business partners
- Generating staff commitment and goodwill
- Providing networking opportunities
- Generating public goodwill
- Enabling Tallents to target its investment to the most deserving causes
- Providing opportunities for staff to develop their skills, which they will transfer to the Practice
Current activity at Tallents
Tallents Solicitors considers the impact of the organisation’s activities on customers, employees, shareholders, communities and the environment in all aspects of its operations. We recognise that responsible business practice helps develop our personal and professional skills, helps broaden the perspectives of our employees and helps to reinforce a sense of local community.
This means that we are aware of our impact on our local communities and seek to enhance the economic and social environment on our doorsteps through responsible business management. This obligation is seen to extend beyond the statutory obligation to comply with legislation and sees our company voluntarily taking further steps to improve the quality of life for employees and their families as well as for the local community and society at large.
In the Community
Tallents’ commitment to the local communities it serves goes beyond just fund raising and making charitable donations. Our roots have been in Nottinghamshire for nearly 240 years and we believe that as a company we can create opportunities to help build vibrant and thriving communities as well as providing an excellent service to our clients.
Working in Partnership
Working in partnership with local community organisations and charities to invest via employee support, expertise, skills, cash donations, gifts in kind and linking brands to causes.
- Tallents has supplied the Steward to the Laxton Court Leet for over 150 years. The Laxton Court Leet is a medieval baronial court, which hands out fines for farming beyond set boundaries, and is the only one still in existence that retains jurisdiction
- Agricultural links – Senior Solicitors are members of several local agricultural committees, the CLA and Lincolnshire Agricultural Society
- The Tallents Godfrey and Company Trophy is presented annually at the Southwell Agricultural Show
- The company annually supports the Collingham and District Agricultural Show
- The company supports the South Notts Point to Point
- The company supports Southwell City Football Club
- Tallents undertake a significant amount of pro bono work for local community groups and charities
Building Educational Links
Tallents build local education links in the community via youth involvement.
In July 2009, the Southwell Office leased part of its land for free to the Prebend Pre-school in Southwell for them to create an outdoor play area and sensory garden for the children, which they were lacking before. This meant the pre-school could offer outdoor and community activities to the children and improve its Ofsted rating.
In their 2011 Ofsted report, it was noted that there was: ‘positive change for (the) children. An example of this is the setting’s progress in developing a sensory garden and creation of a secure outdoor play area, increasing opportunities for physical play, fresh air, exercise and recognising that some children learn better outdoors.’ The report also stated: ‘Children’s health is well-promoted in the pre-school. Frequent opportunities are now provided for children to play outdoors and gain fresh air. The sensory garden offers increasing opportunities for children to explore the natural world. A group gather to plant and care for seeds ready for their garden centre project in the summer.’
In 2009 Tallents began sponsoring and supporting the newly set up Newark Chess League. Aimed at boys and girls aged from 5 to 18 from primary schools across Newark and the surrounding area, the sponsorship allows the league to hold chess training lessons throughout the year and provide prizes for the children.
The league is growing year on year with Tallents’ help. We approached the Newark Chess League in 2009 and offered sponsorship because we knew it was a new initiative within the area and needed support from a local business to help raise its profile. For Tallents, it was an opportunity to encourage local children, both boys and girls from a range of age groups and a diversity of local schools, to take part in a game that is inexpensive, portable, and easy to learn. Tallents recognises that chess knows no bounds of age, gender, class, nationality or even ability. Novices can play experts. Children can play siblings, parents, grandparents or each other.
Chess also improves children’s developmental and academic performance, by enhancing learning strategies and literacy, comprehension and arithmetic skills, social behaviour, personal growth, decoding, thinking, comprehension, analysis and problem-solving skills. Sponsoring the Newark Chess League and helping it to grow across the locality fits perfectly with Tallents’ wider commitment to the community and its desire to help improve local educational standards.
The company also annually sponsors the Young Farmers Section at the Newark and Nottinghamshire County Show.
Protecting the Vulnerable
Tallents always try to meet the needs of vulnerable clients and make sure they are not exploited.
- One Senior Solicitor has been a Court Duty Solicitor since 1990 and the Mansfield office is an accredited provider of criminal defence services
- Citizens Advice Bureau (CAB) – two fee earners are on the rota for the local CAB, offering free legal advice to the citizens of Newark
- MENCAP – one Senior Solicitor regularly speaks at local meetings on legal issues that impact on families affected by disability
- Free half hour consultations – both our Family Law and Litigation departments offer a free half hour consultation for new clients providing support and advice
- Sherwood and Mansfield NHS Trust – Tallents has provided legal advice for the new NHS patient handouts on elderly-related issues such as preparation of wills, preparation of Lasting Powers of Attorney, nursing care concerns, Court of Protection applications and Inheritance Tax concerns
- One Senior Solicitor has been Vice-Chairman of Newark Emmaus Trust since 1992
Listening to Local Concerns
We listen and engage with the local community, public and voluntary sectors on matters of mutual concern.
- One of the member partners was the Chairman of the Newark Action Group for two years and as such provided free legal advice and support to the group and Newark Business Club
- One of our solicitors is on the committee for Women in Newark, providing free legal advice and support to the group
- Several Senior Solicitors also have several additional external directorships in local key businesses
Engaging employees in fundraising and charitable activities and supporting their efforts with matched funding.
- Tuck Shop – a group of staff run a tuck shop the profits from which are donated to local charities
- Charitable Support has always been an aim of Tallents and many local charities benefit from this. So far this year we have supported: Sue’s Place, St John Ambulance, National Charities and Cancer Research Campaign and Macmillan Nurses. Charity fund raising involves all the staff. In addition several Senior Solicitors provide pro bono advice by serving on a number of committees of local charities
- National Charity Support – our staff have also raised funds for: ‘Wear it Pink’ – Breast Cancer Research, Macmillan’s Largest Coffee Morning – Macmillan Nurses, Red Nose Day, Comic Relief, CLIC Sargent and Marie Curie Cancer Care
- Tallents is one of the inaugural supporters of Newark Carnival
- Tallents also supports several local charities, including Beaumond House Community Hospice and the Southwell Care Project
- In 2011, Tallents became the first ever Principal Sponsor of Newark Palace Theatre, forging ever-closer links between two historic businesses in the town. The sponsorship monies go towards a range of projects, including exciting plans to engage children more closely with performing arts