Professional services barely meeting corporate needsApril 2008
The market for professional services in corporate responsibility is still growing at a rapid rate, and demand is outpacing provision in certain areas.
The number of service providers listed in the 2008 edition of The CSR professional services directory, produced by the publishers of Ethical Performance, rose 30 per cent compared with the previous year to stand at just under 600.
Most of the growth was in Europe, where 70 per cent of the providers are headquartered (see piechart below). The number of new organizations in the Americas increased from 89 to 122. However, providers based in Europe but offering services in the Americas now exceed this latter figure, suggesting companies are looking overseas for expertise. The Asia-Pacific region saw little or no change from last year.
More than 6500 unique users per month are searching the online directory, with each entry viewed an average of 350 times over this period.
The most commonly offered service was sustainability advice, in which 139 organizations specialized. Forty-nine offered climate change management services, up from 34 in 2007. Other popular searches were for service providers in the fields of business ethics, information technology, socially responsible investment, and ethical auditing – none of which were among the most offered services.
The CSR field was broken down into 54 categories of service provision, with new ones for marketing, corporate governance research, whistleblowing and responsible printing services added for the first time. The directory is sponsored by CSR and EHS software provider Enablon.
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