CSR Label : Corporate social responsibility

Corporate social responsibility (CSR) integrates environmental, social and economic concerns into their strategies, reconciling performance and sustainability. To demonstrate this commitment, the CSR label offers external validation of their adherence to specific standards. This enhances their credibility and transparency with stakeholders.

What is the CSR Label ?

In the world of conformity certification, the CSR label authenticates an organization’s social responsibility approach. It is an evaluation process by an external body that attests to the alignment of the organization with specific CSR standards, standards or labels. The criteria include various aspects of social responsibility.

There is no global CSR certification, but rather specific CSR labels that guarantee the commitment of companies on specific aspects in different business sectors.

Obtaining this label means gaining credibility, transparency and building trust among the relevant stakeholders.

The CSR label varies according to the sector, the size of the company, its CSR maturity level, and its objectives. They can be specialized, as in environment, social, or ethical, or more global, like the ISO 26000 standard, also called CSR standards, which covers seven areas of societal impact.

Here are some recognized CSR labels :

  • The CSR Committed label, by AFNOR Certification, based on the principles of ISO 26000.  
  • The Lucie label, the first French CSR label, based on ISO 26000, awarded by the Lucie association.  
  • The CSR Label by Bureau Veritas, inspired by the GRI Standards, the Global Compact Principles and the requirements of the DPEF.  
  • The Responsible Digital Label of the Responsible Digital Institute, evaluating CSR performance in digital according to seven criteria.  
  • The Positive Workplace label, by the Ethikonsulting agency, which measures employee engagement and quality of life at work.

The CSR label offers significant advantages: it solidifies the CSR orientation of the organization, allows a distinction in the market, reduces risks, retains customers and employees, attracts new talent, optimizes costs, encourages innovation and contributes to the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

Which organisations offer the CSR label ?

The Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Label is awarded by various organizations each with their specific criteria, method and label. This variety guarantees a wide range of CSR certifications, adapted to the different needs of organizations. The entities offering this certification include:

AFNOR Certification

Recognized in France, AFNOR Certification grants the label Committed CSR, aligned with the ISO 26000 standard. This label examines the entities' CSR initiatives through 8 chapters and 55 criteria, in line with the 7 evaluation areas of the ISO standard. Open to all types of organizations and sectors, it aims to structure, improve and enhance CSR approaches with stakeholders.

Lucie Association

The Lucie association, a pioneer in France, also awards the Lucie label based on the ISO 26000 standard, with more than 500 members. This label distinguishes organizations dedicated to upholding the principles of the standard and contributing to the UN Sustainable Development Goals, strengthening their credibility, engaging stakeholders and improving their overall performance.

Bureau Veritas

As an international player, Bureau Veritas offers the CSR label inspired by the GRI standards, the ten principles of the Global Compact and the DPEF (Article 225). It evaluates CSR performance in four main areas: governance, social, environment, and stakeholder engagement, and is intended for organizations wishing to demonstrate their CSR commitment, stand out, reduce risks and innovate.

The Responsible Digital Institute

In France, the Responsible Digital Institute awards the Responsible Digital label, evaluating digital actors on seven aspects: governance, social, environment, economy, ethics, use, and data. Aimed at digital stakeholders, it aims to measure and reduce digital impact, respect human rights, create shared value and promote an inclusive and inclusive digital.

Ethikonsulting agency

Ethikonsulting agency, based in France, is recognized for its Positive Workplace label. It assesses the quality of work life and employee engagement. Based on a 12-dimensional system, the label encompasses the individual, collective and organizational aspects essential to well-being in the workplace. The Positive Workplace is intended for entities wishing to focus on the human aspect of their strategy.

This label helps to improve employee motivation and loyalty, increase overall performance and make the organization more attractive to potential talent.

What are the specific requirements of the CSR label for my industry ?

The CSR label varies according to the sector of activity, according to its environmental, social and economic impacts. Thus, labels are designed to meet the specific needs of each sector, integrating its challenges, opportunities and best practices. Examples include :

The agricultural sector

Faced with key issues such as the protection of biodiversity, sustainable resource management, food security, and others, the agricultural sector can benefit from the dedicated CSR label, including :

  • The label Committed Winemakers, measuring CSR performance on 4 pillars: environmental, social, economic and governance.  
  • The Bayonne ham sector CSR label, evaluating performance according to 6 axes, including the environment, social and economic.  
  • The So Responsables Cooperatives label, for a CSR performance of agricultural cooperatives evaluated through 7 areas.

The digital sector

With its rapid growth, the digital sector presents both significant opportunities and CSR challenges, particularly regarding energy consumption and waste management. Specific CSR labels exist, such as :

  • The Digital Responsible label, evaluating digital players on 7 key axes.
  • The Positive Workplace label, measuring quality of life at work and commitment across 12 dimensions.

The services sector

This diverse sector faces unique CSR challenges, including customer satisfaction, carbon footprint and anti-corruption. To answer these questions, several specific labels are available :

  • The Human For Clients label, measuring the CSR performance of customer relationship centers on 4 axes.  
  • The REUNIR RSE label, evaluating passenger transport companies in 7 areas.  
  • The CSR e-Market Active Agencies, for communication consulting agencies, evaluated on 5 axes.

These CSR labels, awarded by independent and recognized organizations, are based on criteria adapted to each sector. They help organizations not only meet regulatory requirements and stakeholder expectations, but also distinguish themselves through their commitment to responsible performance and innovation.

What are the steps to obtain the CSR label ?

Obtaining the CSR label requires a serious approach and specific support. Discover the key steps to succeed in your CSR certification :

1. Choosing the right CSR label type

CSR labels vary depending on the sector, size and objectives of your organization. It is important to select the one that best suits your needs. Learn about the various certification bodies, their standards, CSR labels, as well as the evaluation criteria, costs and associated deadlines. Weigh the pros and cons of each option and consider feedback from other CSR certified organizations.

2. Make a CSR diagnosis of your organization

Before aiming for the CSR label, make a diagnosis to identify the strengths and weaknesses of your organization in terms of social responsibility. This diagnostic will assess your current CSR performance, identify areas for improvement, define your objectives, your strategy and your CSR action plan. This diagnosis can be internal or assisted by an external consultant.

3. Implement its CSR approach

Following the diagnosis, implement your CSR approach by following the strategy and action plan established. Engage in targeted actions to meet the criteria of the label. Involve all your stakeholders by informing them, raising awareness and training in your CSR approach. Ensure the monitoring and evaluation of your approach through performance indicators and internal audits.

4. Using a CSR certification body

Once your CSR approach is considered mature and meets the criteria of the desired label, contact a certification body. Provide the required documents, request a quote and sign a contract. The organisation will conduct an external audit of your organisation to assess its compliance with CSR standards. The audit can be carried out on site or remotely.

5. Obtain the CSR label

After a successful external audit, the CSR certification body grants the organisation a certificate, logo, or label, which attests to the success. This CSR label confirms the organisation’s compliance with a specific standard, including CSR standards or labels establishing precise criteria in terms of social responsibility. This is a strong sign of credibility, showing a transparent and reliable commitment to stakeholders.

The validity of the CSR label varies, as a rule, from 1 to 3 years (on average 18 months), depending on the type of certification and the issuing body.

6. Maintain and renew its CSR label

The acquisition of the CSR label marks the beginning of a continuous improvement process in terms of social responsibility. For this, it is crucial to maintain and renew the label by constantly adhering to established criteria and requirements, while being attentive to regulatory changes, stakeholder expectations and industry best practices. Submitting your organization to regular audits, for the monitoring or renewal of certification by the CSR certification body, ensures and demonstrates a constant or improved CSR performance.

How much does the CSR label cost?

The price of obtaining the CSR label varies according to several criteria: the type of certification chosen, the size and sector of activity of your company, the number of sites to be certified, as well as the entity issuing the label. There is no fixed price or official scale for this label, making it essential to request a customized quote from the CSR certification body of your choice, providing all the relevant information related to your company and your CSR commitment.

The costs associated with the CSR label are broken down into several parts, including :

  • The price of the initial training for the CSR label, which aims to familiarize participants with the reference, standard, or targeted CSR label. Although this training is not mandatory, it is highly recommended to maximize your chances of success. It can be offered by the CSR certification body itself or a partner. Its cost depends on different factors such as duration, content and format (face-to-face or remote).
  • The cost of the external evaluation of your CSR approach, carried out by the CSR certification body, either on site or remotely. The purpose of this assessment is to confirm compliance with a set of specific criteria and requirements. Its price varies according to the duration of the audit, the number of sites audited and the complexity of the CSR approach.
  • The direct cost of the CSR label, corresponding to the right to use the certificate, logo or label for a fixed period (often between 1 and 3 years). This amount may also include additional services such as coaching or follow-up. This cost varies depending on the type of certification, the size and industry of the company, the number of sites, etc.

Investing in the CSR label can be expensive, but it must be considered as a strategic investment bringing significant benefits to the organization: performance improvement, innovation, differentiation, risk reduction, cost savings, among other things. There are financial aids such as grants, tax credits, or zero-rate loans that can support companies in their CSR certification process.

It is advisable to inquire about these aids from public or private bodies, depending on your sector of activity, the size and location of your company.

How long does it take to get the CSR label ?

Obtaining the CSR label varies according to several factors: the type of certification chosen, the level of advancement of the organization in its CSR initiatives, the complexity of the evaluation process and the choice of the certifying body. There is no fixed duration or universal schedule to acquire a CSR certification.

It is crucial to consult the CSR certification body of your choice by providing it with relevant details about your organisation and CSR efforts.

Obtaining the CSR label usually takes place in several stages, including :

  • The preparation phase, which involves the realization of a CSR diagnosis, the development of a strategy and an action plan, the engagement of stakeholders, among others. This can range from a few months to several years, depending on the initial progress of the organization, its size, industry and number of sites.
  • The certification application phase includes contact with the certifying body, submission of the required documents, request for quotation, and signing of the contract. This step can last from a few weeks to a few months, depending on the type of CSR certification desired, the availability of the certifying body and the volume of requests they process.
  • The evaluation phase of CSR initiatives, which requires an external audit by the certifying body, which can be done on site or remotely. This part can take from a few days to a few weeks depending on the duration of the audit, the number of sites to evaluate, and the complexity of CSR initiatives.
  • The final phase of receipt of the label, during which the organization receives its certificate, logo, or label for a period of 1 to 3 years, depending on the type of certification. This step usually takes from a few days to a few weeks, based on the certifying body’s processes, approval by the certification committee, and communication of results.

The process of obtaining the CSR label can vary considerably but must be seen as an investment, offering the organisation benefits in terms of performance, innovation, differentiation, risk reduction and cost optimization. Support mechanisms are available, including training, advice and tools, to help organizations accelerate and facilitate their approach to the CSR label.

It is advisable to inquire with public or private actors who offer such services, depending on the sector of activity, the size and location of your organization.

Should the CSR label be renewed ?

The CSR label is not perpetual but temporary, with a validity period ranging from 1 to 3 years (often on average 18 months), variable depending on the type of certification and the CSR certification body concerned.

This label requires frequent renewal in order to maintain or improve CSR performance and maintain the benefits associated with the label.

The renewal process includes external audits by the CSR certification body to assess compliance with the requirements of the relevant CSR standard or label. These audits, which can be annual or every two years, vary in depth according to different factors such as the level of CSR maturity, the size of the organization, its sector of activity and the number of operational sites.

Renewal is not automatic or insured. It is based on the results of external audits that may be favourable, unfavourable or nuanced.

In case of a positive result, the certification body renews the certification for a new period, conditioned on compliance with the commitments of the organization. A negative result results in the withdrawal of the certification, depriving the organization of the use of the certificate, logo, label, etc. With mixed results, a correction period is granted before the final decision to renew or withdraw the label.

The renewal of the CSR label requires careful preparation and specific support. It is crucial to continue to progress and improve in CSR, in line with its strategy and action plan, respecting the label criteria, taking into account regulatory changes, stakeholder expectations, and market best practices. It is also important to communicate effectively with the CSR certification body, providing it with all the necessary information about the organisation and its CSR approach.

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Fiche descriptive pour chaque code de nomenclature
Rapports de test ou certificats d'analyse pour chaque code de nomenclature
Certificat de qualité ISO 9001 ou équivalent
Déclaration d'importation à demander à votre acheteur (selon la destination)


Revue documentaire

Voici la liste des documents nécessaires pour l'ouverture du dossier :
Proforma ou facture finale
Fiche descriptive pour chaque code de nomenclature
Rapports de test ou certificats d'analyse pour chaque code de nomenclature
Certificat de qualité ISO 9001 ou équivalent
Déclaration d'importation à demander à votre acheteur (selon la destination)


Revue documentaire

Voici la liste des documents nécessaires pour l'ouverture du dossier :
Proforma ou facture finale
Fiche descriptive pour chaque code de nomenclature
Rapports de test ou certificats d'analyse pour chaque code de nomenclature
Certificat de qualité ISO 9001 ou équivalent
Déclaration d'importation à demander à votre acheteur (selon la destination)


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