As a company, we recognise the need for sustainable development and continually aim to have a positive economic, social and environmental impact through our activities. We strive to be a responsible business and to contribute to our local community in Brighton and London using the skills we have in-house.
We’ve been a strong and active CSR leader since inception in 2001 with the company becoming a member of Business in the Community (BITC) since 2003 and receiving the national Small Business of the Year award in 2007 from HRH Prince of Wales and Al Gore. Since then, CEO Jason Woodford has been the small business champion on the SouthEast BITC Leadership Advisory Board whose vision is to help the UK become a world leader at responsible business.
We’re committed to taking a leadership role in engaging local organisations and working with them help maximise the positive impact of our efforts.
The Benefits of Corporate Social Responsibility
Our CSR Activity
Across the business there are many examples of the company’s commitment to social responsibility with a particular emphasis on helping local young people learn about and get employed in the digital economy.
Below are just some of the ways in which we try to have positive economic, social and environmental impact through our CSR activity:
- We’ve been members of BITC (Business in the Community) since 2003 with a South East leadership role since 2008
- In the Autumn of 2006, SiteVisibility invested £10,000 to help set up Wired Sussex as one of the founder members. Since then Jason Woodford, our CEO has been a Non-Exec Director and membership has grown to 2469 who benefit from the training, employment opportunities and business support provided by Wired Sussex, making Brighton one of the recognised national centres for digital business.
- co.uk report that Brighton’s digital economy is now worth over £1 billion per annum, which puts it on par with tourism.
- SiteVisibility co-founded BrightonSEO in 2007 which is now the world’s largest free SEO conference where over 4,000 people meet twice a year to learn about digital marketing for free
- SiteVisibility founded the Internet Marketing Podcast in 2006 where over 20,000 people from 94 countries learn about digital marketing for free each month. Since its launch, we’ve had had over 2 million downloads.
- CEO Jason Woodford was a member of the Brighton CSR Forum from 2014-2018 and helped lead its merger with the Brighton Chamber of Commerce in 2018, culminating in the Big Debate on 20th November 2018 where over 150 businesses, charities and members of the local authorities debated local social/community priorities and mapped out a collaborative action plan, with a particular emphasis on homelessness
- We’ve sponsored the University of Brighton Digital Media course and “Best student” award since 2005
- There have been 13 winners so far who have gone on to successful careers in digital media
- Three students received a one year work experience and have gone on to successful careers in digital marketing with one founding his own agency
- We’ve regularly provided work experience to young people looking to gain experience in the industry recently including:
- South Downs College – Georgia and Cameron work placements in March 2019
- BACA work placements –Tristan (2016), Jade (2017) & Jamie (2018)
- We’ve also provided a number of placements and apprenticeships, all of whom now have successful careers in digital marketing. This includes:
- Wired Sussex “Sussex Internship Programme (SIP)” (2011)
- University of Brighton – Dan Pelling (2005), Yanni Papaioannou (2013), Natalie Wright (2012)
- Creative Process – Jennifer Schweiger (2016)
- Eastbourne College work placement – Lucinda (2018)
Providing Free Paid Search Services for Career Ready
In 2018, we joined forces with Career Ready, a business committed to connecting employers with schools & colleges to provide young people aged 14-18 with mentors, internships, masterclasses, and employer-led activities that prepare them for the world of work.
Our joint mission is to help to deliver 70,000 work placement opportunities during 2019 and we’ve been supporting them by providing free paid search services to promote this.
Here’s what our CEO, Jason Woodford had to say:
“We’re delighted to launch a partnership with Career Ready and we look forward to playing an active role in helping them connect young people to the world of work. We are a Google Partner and we are providing our Paid Search services free of charge to Career Ready; it’s one small but scaleable action we can take as a SME to help reduce skills shortages by attracting young talent into our thriving industry. Work experience is mission critical for young people who want to enhance their career choices. But getting useful work experience is incredibly difficult and that’s where Career Ready is helping to solve the problem at scale.”
You can find out more about our work with Career Ready here.
Improving Employment Opportunities in Brighton
Digital marketing is a fast-growing industry with an insatiable thirst for talent and as such, our industry’s greatest challenge is the availability of talent and this is reflected locally here in Brighton where recruitment for skilled staff is difficult, despite the two nearby Universities.
In contrast, there are numerous locations in Brighton where multi-generational unemployment exists and the opportunities for meaningful work are poor.
It was clear to us that an opportunity existed to help solve (in our own small way) our industry’s talent shortages by inspiring and encouraging young people on our doorstep to discover the employment opportunities offered by Brighton’s digital employers.
Our hope is that the one million other small businesses in the UK provide one week of work experience to a young person, that’s one million young people who are more likely to engage positively with work.
As well as our work with Career Ready, we’ve been working closely with Brighton Aldridge Community Academy (BACA) to help improve employment opportunities in Brighton.
After a year supporting Extratime, in 2014 SiteVisibility initiated the The Brighton BIG (Business Action Group) which is made up of a number of businesses (including CPJ Field & Co), working together on collaborative projects responding to specific needs of their local community.
The first project we committed to support was with Brighton Aldridge Community Academy (BACA).
BACA is located in the Moulsecoomb area of Brighton which has been identified by the 2010 Index of Multiple Deprivation as an area facing key social and economic challenges.
Despite a fabulous building and passionate teaching staff, BACA is under subscribed, does not meet the national average for young people achieving 5 A*-C including English and Maths at GCSE and has a high number of students with additional needs. The school want to build stronger links with local businesses in order to widen opportunities for their students.
The Brighton BIG aims to provide intense and sustained support for the school. This allows the group to work strategically with the school in identifying how business can support them most effectively. Their support is focussed and through collaboration, the impact on the school and its young people will be greater.
Over the last few years our staff members have provided training sessions for students at BACA, whilst we’ve also had a number of students join us for work experience.
You can find out how one BACA student, Tristan Kibble, got on during his time spent working with us here.
Wired Sussex Talent Festival – Introducing the Skills & Talent Manifesto
In 2019, as part of the Talent Festival, Wired Sussex introduced the Skills and Talent Manifesto – a pledge to help make Greater Brighton the best place in the UK for anyone to have a fulfilling career in the digital sector.
As this fit in with one of our core CSR objectives, we were one of the first businesses to sign up.
This is our pledge:
If you’d like to sign-up, you can do so here.
We’ve been members of BITC (Business in the Community) since 2003 with a South East leadership role since 2008 and as previously mentioned, our CEO Jason Woodford, has been the small business champion on the SouthEast BITC Leadership Advisory Board whose vision is to help the UK become a world leader at responsible business.
In 2014 SiteVisibility initiated the The Brighton BIG (Business Action Group) which is made up of a number of businesses (including CPJ Field & Co), working together on collaborative projects responding to specific needs of their local community.
BITC manage and coordinate the Brighton BIG activities which include quarterly facilitated business meetings, setting and reviewing objectives, project management and delivery, as well as monitoring and evaluation.
Projects Planned for Year 1:
6th Form Business Studies
Each BIG member business will provide 2 volunteers per week for a series of between 2 and 5 weeks to profile their organisation and the different roles available within it. They will be working with 10 6th form Business Studies Students.
The presentations will be filmed and will be used on BEACH, a website run by Brighton and Hove Jobs and Brighton and Hove City Council to support school students with Career Information Advice and Guidance, thus widening the reach and impact of the intervention.
These will also be available to teachers with the aim of increasing their awareness of local companies and opportunities to allow them to support their students more effectively. Each company will then consider offering some form of work experience for one of the students later in the year.
We aim to create a focus group to work with BACA around marketing and external projection of image. The group will be formed of marketing specialists from BIG member companies.
The BIG members will have the opportunity to join Legal and General in an innovative and fun Dragon’s Den event. The aim is to align with the schools focus around enterprise, and provide the students with a ‘real life’ situation to solve a marketing issue.
If you’d like to find out more about how SiteVisibility is involved with any of the businesses above or how we strive to be a responsible business and to contribute to our local community, feel free to give us a call on 01273733433 or leave us a message via the form below. We’d love to chat.