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The Civic 50

November 26, 2012

A couple of weeks ago, the National Conference on Citizenship, Points of Light and Bloomberg LP released their first annual list of the 50 corporations that are most active in their communities. We at American Express are delighted to be ranked number 24 on this listing.

According to materials released to the public, The Civic 50 represents a comprehensive ranking of S&P 500 companies that best use their time to help communities. The list ranks companies on seven specific metrics: leadership, measurement and strategy, design, employee civic growth, community partnerships, cause alignment and transparency.

In general, the highest rated companies demonstrated that:

  • Programs are designed to utilize the core business competencies of the corporation (including supply chain, products and services, and workforce skills)
  • Measurement tools are well defined, objective and look beyond outputs to focus also on outcomes
  • Social issue focus is related to the fundamental purpose of the corporation
  • Policies around "giving back to the community" are an integrated part of the corporate culture and leadership philosophy
  • Partnerships are targeted, strategic, collaborative and high-functioning
  • Results are data-backed and produce bottom-line returns for the workplace, brand and community
More than two-thirds of the top 50 companies say they "frequently" or "always" use the professional skills of their workforce to address social issues and real community challenges. In addition, 66 percent of the corporations have "mission-level" alignment with community partners, meaning they work with them on a strategic, rather than just a program or event, level.

The top 25 companies listed on The Civic 50 are:

  • IBM
  • Citigroup
  • AT&T
  • Aetna
  • Capital One
  • Morgan Stanley
  • Campbell Soup
  • McGraw-Hill
  • General Electric
  • Hasbro
  • Western Union
  • FedEx
  • Allstate
  • Microsoft
  • Bank of America
  • Target
  • Intel
  • United Health Group
  • Abbott
  • Southwest Airlines
  • Pacific Gas & Electric Co.
  • Viacom
  • Apollo Group
  • American Express
  • Cummins
American Express scored particularly well in the design, cause alignment and transparency dimensions – ranking number 4 of 50 in transparency. We did less well on the measurement and strategy, community partnerships and civic growth dimensions – so we will need to work harder on those going forward!

If you have a question or comment, please share it here.

P.S. Did you know that according to The Nonprofit Times (November 9, 2012), the top 5 ranked companies contributed $1.5 billion in grant support to community organizations, 17.5 volunteer hours valued at more than $375 million, and $150 million in matching donations?


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