How to find Social Value within your existing business activities
20 Jul 2021

How to find Social Value within your existing business activities

20 Jul 2021

A few weeks ago we talked about ‘what is social value’, explaining different ways in which it can be accounted for within society. There has been a lot of buzz around the changes in the criteria for public procurement as we have previously discussed – now, due to PPN 06/20, public authorities must not only consider social value in their tender criteria, but place at least 10% of their weighting on it. (Read about it in more depth here)

This is great if you are a company that already has a robust social value strategy in place and a credible, auditable way of accounting for it. But what if you are just starting out on the journey and do not want to be left behind in this new tender process? How can you show bid assessors that you too are providing additional social value through the work that you do?

Of course, in order to stay competitive, you can’t just add on more and more additional services, no matter how beneficial to the local community or environment they may be. There is no point in having the most robust and comprehensive list of value adds, if you don’t end up winning the contract because your price is out of budget.

And we aren’t just talking about the charity work or volunteering you commit to through your CSR or employee engagement programmes. Social value activities are so much more widespread than this. Do you really know what activities you can claim as providing social value? There are plenty that your business is probably already engaging in right now… Once you know this, you unlock your potential to be considered on a whole range of projects where you might otherwise have missed out.

What are the themes and topics you need to think about?

As part of rolling out PPN 06/20 the government produced The Social Value Model to give guidance around to the areas of interest. We’ve listed the themes and their associated topics below. Don’t be put off by either the vagueness of the wording or the intensity of the guidance document that goes with it. It is actually a very logical and useful list of activities that many companies already engage in. You may just not think of them as ‘social value’ in these terms, but once you look at the evidence around the fiscal, environmental and societal effects, it all starts to paint a kinder picture.

PPN 0620 Themes Thrive Social Value

There are 52 metrics in total within The Social Value Model and so there is likely several metrics that you are already recording. Some examples include

Theme 1: Tackling Covid-19 Recovery:

  • Number of full-time equivalent (FTE) employment opportunities created under the contract for those who were made redundant due to COVID-19.

Theme 3: Fighting Climate Change:

  • Number of people-hours spent protecting and improving the environment under the contract

Theme 4: Equal Opportunity:

  • Number of full-time equivalent (FTE) disabled people employed under the contract

So how do you know the fiscal, environmental and societal effects of your work? You need a tool to quantify it. At Thrive we use the Impact Evaluation Standard to do this. This measurement tool is a collection of the 52 metrics directly aligned to The Social Value Model, but also 50 more as well. The Impact Evaluation Standard covers not only the metrics, but the financial proxy values and guidance documents which have been designed by a panel of Social Value experts. It takes account of the continually changing landscape in procurement and draws upon the latest guidance from the UK government.

So, in this upcoming series of blog posts, we take a look at where you can delve deeper into your existing supply chain or businesses practices to show how you can demonstrate additional social value, without adding significantly to your contract cost.

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