You may have heard a lot about B Corps, or B-Corps, and wondering what is that? What does it do? Many companies are choosing to become a B Corp, and this may be the next movement for business in 2018.
What is a B Corp?
A B Corp is a for profit business that also wants to give back at the same time. They are held to a higher standard when it comes to performance, accountability, and transparency. Companies of all sizes can become a B Corp if they get approved.
The Process of Becoming a B Corp
For a company to become a B Corp, they must receive a B Corp certification from B Lab. B Lab is a nonprofit that analyzes companies and provides the certification. They offer extra support like access to the B Corp logo and introducing the newly certified B Corp to the larger community of other B Corps. This can mean that the company can network with others and it could create more business and opportunities for partnerships.
The Steps Needed to Become a B Corp
There are many steps a company needs to take to be certified. According to B Lab there 6 B Corp requirements.
1. Take the B Impact Assessment
The B Impact Assessment looks at the overall impact your company makes its shareholders. Each assessment is different, depending on the size of the company. This means how many employees you have, your sector, and location of the main office. The assessment can take anywhere between 2 to 4 hours.
Once you complete the assessment, you will receive a B Impact Report that contains your overall score. Most companies score between 40 and 100 points. 80 is the average score, which also happens to be the qualifying score.
2. Schedule an Assessment Review and Submit Supporting Documentation
Once the assessment is done, an Assessment Review will be scheduled. You will be asked to provide supporting documentation. The Review will randomly choose 6 to 8 questions that you answered yes to previously about your operations. You can show your operations through the requested documents.
The list of needed documents will be given after scheduling the review call. It will also need to be submitted 2 days before the review will take place, if they aren’t, you will have to reschedule.
3. Complete the Assessment Review
Now it’s time for actual Review, which will be on the phone with B Lab staff member. They will go over any questions that seemed difficult to answer or unclear. This gives the lab a chance to sharpen their answers so they fit the intentions of your company. Their review helps them understand any unique aspects of your company. It usually takes around 60 to 90 minutes to do.
4. Give Any Additional Documentation
If you pass the pass the Assessment Review, the staff at B Lab will show you where to submit more supporting documents. The Assessment will typically choose an additional 1 to 6 questions from the Impact Business Model section that were answered yes.
Then the lab will ask for proof of your practices through the documents. A list of additional documents will be found in the same place as the previous documents were requested. The staff asks for any additional documents that will clear up their questions.
5. Complete Disclosure Questionnaire
The Disclosure Questionnaire allows your company to disclose to B Lab any sensitive practices, fines, and sanctions confidentially. This could be related to the company or its partners. This will not affect your rating that has already been earned though.
Normally, not much happens with this, little action is needed. In the case that the lab does find something, it needs further clarification. The company may even need to put in place solutions to fix that issue.
6. Background Checks
Any company wanting a certification is subject to background checks by the lab staff. These can include review of public records, news sources, and search engines for company names, brands, executives or founders, and other related topics.
There Could Be a Whole New Wave of B Corps in the Future
With there being over 1,800 B Corps total across over 130 industries and in 50 different countries, there could be a large wave coming with the younger generation. One of the countries that has B Corps is Sweden, who hosts a program for young girls who want to become entrepreneurs.
She Entrepreneurs 2018 offers any woman between the ages 20 and 36 that live in the Middle Eastern region a chance to learn about business. With programs such as this, it’s easy to see that a wave of new B Corps could be coming, so you better jump on it now.
The above article was researched and written by the editorial staff at WomensWealth.Money.