10 Socially Responsible Companies

Businesses That Help Improve the World

In recent years, consumers have begun to weigh the social impact of different businesses when deciding where they want to shop. One survey earlier this year from three consulting firms found that the majority of consumers (55%) would rather purchase a product from a socially responsible company than buy the same product from a company that is not socially responsible. Of course, it can be difficult to determine which companies truly give back to society, so we’ve compiled a list of the 10 most socially responsible companies currently doing business based on three criteria: charitable donations, environmentally friendly policies and the fairness of their hiring practices. The first three businesses on this list are based on data we used from the Chronicle of Philanthropy, which tracks annual donations from more than 150 major corporations. We ranked these businesses based on the total amount donated in 2009 as a percentage of their yearly profits. The next three businesses on the list are based on data from DiversityInc, a business publication that surveyed more than 400 companies to determine the 50 most diverse based on the number of different minorities who are represented on staff, as well as other criteria like the number of women in executive positions. The final third of the list is devoted to those companies who have demonstrated most improvement in their green practices, as ranked by ClimateCounts.org, a nonprofit group that scores dozens of major businesses based on their initiatives to be more eco-friendly. We’ve also added one wild card to the list who may not rank at the top of each list, but demonstrates a healthy combination of each of these factors. Photo Credit: Wikimedia.org