What are the Benefits of Social Value?

At Social Value UK, we believe that social value has a huge potential to help us change the way we understand the world around us, and make decisions about where to invest resources. By changing the way we account for value, we believe that we will end up with a world with better wellbeing and more equality for all.   

Our members are driven by a number of different incentives to develop their social value management practice.  Three of the main reasons are: 

  1. There is increasing regulation and legislation: for example, in the UK organisations increasingly need to respond to things like the Social Value Act, PPN 06/20 and the Central Government Social Value Model, the Green Book Supplementary Guidance on Wellbeing and BSI Bs8950 guide to social value.  There are also increasing international non-financial disclosures, ESG requirements and international frameworks such as the SDGs and GRI 
  2. The business imperative is growing: companies are winning more work by addressing social and environmental requirements of government contracts.  They will also be in a better position to manage risk by understanding the interconnection of their environmental, social and governance impacts.  Increasingly, our employees and customers care about the purpose and impact of the organisations they interact with. 
  3. It is the right thing to do: we are at a critical phase socially, environmentally and culturally in the UK and across the globe.  We all have a responsibility to be working towards a better, more sustainable future, as well as improving our lives and our environment for everyone today 

Social value is about a mindset shift where our impact on people and planet are a part of our everyday culture, and are embedded into how we define our purpose, how we plan our activities, and how we continuously manage our activities.   Social value helps us to continuously improve and to ask ‘have we made as much of a difference as we can with the resources we have available?’  

Managing our social value can help us in many ways, such as: 

  • Gain a competitive advantage: prove to external stakeholders (including funders/ investors/ commissioners) the broader value that is being created. 
  • Improve your practice: social value can help us to improve our services and gain effieciencies by helping us to focus on the things that really matter to people. 
  • Maximise our impact: maximise the value you are creating for all of your stakeholders by implementing robust systems to measure, manage and maximise your social value. 
  • Social risk management: increase confidence that you are taking steps to manage your social value including the risk of negative or unintended outcomes. 
  • Involve the people who matter most: applying Principle 1 Involve Stakeholders helps us to listen to, be accountable to, and be responsive to the people who matter most; those that are most affected by what we do.