Since the 1990s, Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) has become a widely used term in most advanced economies. A company's corporate social responsibility can be defined as the company's focus and work, on a voluntary basis, concerning the social and environmental considerations in its day-to-day operations, over and above its compliance with existing laws and regulations in the country in which it is operating. We can say that CSR involves taking responsibility over and above creating financial value for shareholders.
Corporate social responsibility can also be seen as a strategy for improving the company’s reputation, developing good relations with the local community and boosting profits wherever it is operating, often in developing countries where poverty is a major challenge. Ensuring sustainable development in the local community can be a guarantee of sustainable growth in a business.
In Norway, the Working Environment Act governs corporate social responsibility. The Norwegian government has dedicated a white paper (Report to the Storting No. 10 (2008–2009)) to this area. Among other things, this white paper recommends signing up to the UN Global Compact initiative.
Global Compact was launched by the UN in 1999 and is a voluntary framework for corporate social responsibility, where member companies undertake to implement ten principles of human rights, employment rights, the environment and anti-corruption in their day-to-day operations. Today, Global Compact is the world's largest initiative relating to corporate social responsibility.
Cegal and CSR
In order for a company's corporate social responsibility to be credible, it must engage in areas where it can make a difference and which are relevant to the company.
We want to contribute to a sustainable world and defines this based on the UN definition of sustainable development – a development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. For us, sustainability is essential in our vision of becoming a legendary company which employees enjoy working for and which customers want to work with.
Three pillars to Cegal's sustainability strategy
We contribute to a better environment
Looking after the environment is an issue we don’t just care about, we contribute to it. Our focus relating to the environment is split between our three core areas:
Agile software for the energy industry, digitization and automation of work processes that contribute to more sustainable energy production and distribution.
Technological superheroes, who contribute to environmentally friendly solutions and responsible consumption and production among our customers.
Secure operation and monitoring, with a focus on energy efficiency at a dedicated data centre and through business partners.
We want to use technology to create more environmentally friendly solutions, both within the company and among our customers, and to continually assess how we can reduce our own footprint. The technology industry plays a crucial role in helping to find solutions to many of the challenges relating to sustainability. With our expertise and our technological superheroes, we will lead the way.
Our mission is to create digital success stories in meaningful and sustainable industries. This is precisely why we have specialized in the energy industry, and set specific goals to link our customer projects to the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The EU has now launched a classification system that defines which business activities qualify as sustainable. This could be an important tool for us in developing new products and services which support the selected SDGs.
We take social responsibility
We want our employees to have meaningful jobs. We must also have at least one "passionate cause" every year, where we volunteer to work for equality, peace and justice. Since 2019, our largest and most important initiative has been working with the National Criminal Investigation Service (Kripos) to prevent child and adolescent abuse online.
Cegal is a technology company which is helping to create smart solutions to prevent online abuse by drawing on its expertise and new technology. In partnership with Kripos, we have set up a group of volunteers to find out how we can minimize this major problem, using interdisciplinary expertise and new technological solutions.
In our efforts to take our corporate social responsibility seriously, we have also supported the Humans for Humans non-profit organisation. This organisation works to help victims of human trafficking. Human trafficking is a serious problem both in Norway and around the world. In Norway, up to 300 victims of human trafficking are discovered every year.
We have helped to create a tap-proof, web-based communication platform which makes it safer for victims of human trafficking to contact helpers. It also makes it easier for human trafficking volunteers to work together and share information.
Our aim at Cegal is to build a legendary company which our employees love to work for and our customers love to work with. We could never achieve this without diversity as regards gender, age, ethnicity, background and expertise. Equal pay for equal work and equal experience, as well as equal opportunities regardless of ethnicity, orientation, religious beliefs and functional ability are important to us.
At Cegal, we already have employees from over 20 different countries, and we are working systematically to increase the proportion of women. This is a goal we share with the ODA network,, the Nordic region's leading network for women in Tech. Cegal is an ODA Platinum partner.
Being a responsible operator is also about accountability beyond ourselves. We must take responsibility beyond ourselves in order to contribute to the global sustainability agenda. We are doing this by imposing requirements on our suppliers and partners, which set out expectations regarding stakeholders in the value chain. At the same time, we strive to work in partnership with others and collaborate in the supply chain in order to achieve sustainable development.
We are an open and transparent company that has strict and clear anti-corruption procedures and a massive focus on IT security in everything we do, with associated routines and procedures.
We aim to ensure that the value chain is responsible and treats employees with respect. We impose requirements on our suppliers and partners (Code of Conduct), which set out clear expectations for stakeholders in the value chain. These are areas where we are continually taking new steps and striving to improve.
The technology industry is part of a value chain which both uses and discards many non-renewable resources. This situation must change, and we must take our share of the responsibility. We are also constantly seeking to test new concepts relating to the circular economy, both alone and in partnership with others.
At the same time, we are seeking new knowledge regarding both actual and potential changes in policy and regulations, so that we are up-to-date at all times and able to help our customers operate sustainably and deliver sustainable solutions. Another aspect of this is the way in which our organisation works around the clock with security at the forefront in order to safeguard our IT security and our customers.