We’re delighted to announce that we are now a Certified B Corporation, joining a global community of businesses that strive to make a positive social and environmental impact. Yard becomes only the second certified digital agency in Wales — where our headquarters are based — and the fourth certified digital agency in Scotland.
Our founding principles — those which have been the organisation's bedrock since its creation — align closely with those of B Corp™. Investing in our employees and ensuring social and environmental responsibility were important values to our founders Paul and Stephan from the very start. Moving forward with the accreditation process felt like a natural next step for us, and we are proud to be taking this important leap in our journey as an organisation.
Make business a force for good
B Corps base their decision making on better serving communities, employees and the environment. By demonstrating high social and environmental performance, B Corp Certified organisations use business as “a force for good”. The wider collective vision of the global community pursues an inclusive, equitable, and regenerative economy.
A framework with impact at its core
The process of becoming a Certified B Corporation starts with the B Impact Assessment: a tool to measure, manage and improve social and environmental impact across an organisation. The impact areas of the B Corp™ assessment cover governance, workers, community, environment, and customers; a company must score 80 points or above to be considered.
Our journey to certification
Applying to achieve B Corp™ provided an opportunity to reflect on who we are and who we want to be. Allied with our internal values, the framework ensures that we hold ourselves to the highest standards. We achieved an overall score of 89.6, showcasing our commitment to use business as a force for good.
The process was affirming in showing we are on the right track, but also enabled us to identify potential areas of even further improvement across the business. We strive to be better in everything we do, so this was an opportunity to ensure that we make a positive impact across the board.
Driven by our people
Yardies, the individuals who collectively make up Yard, are at the heart of the organisation. The 34.0 points achieved in the Workers category is a reflection of this.
“We value our people, and our people are our value.” — Ruth Kisby, HR Director.
We recognise and value the importance of flexibility to retain the very best staff, so we had already introduced optional homeworking before Covid. Around 20% of our staff now work fully remote, with the remaining 80% hybrid working, based at home three or four days per week. To ensure that remote working continues to be a positive experience, we encourage a whole host of additional activities aimed to nurture our work culture. These have taken the form of bi-weekly Walking Wednesdays and virtual ‘pub’ quizzes.
Ruth explained, “Along with our monthly staff meeting, the extra activities are designed to create opportunities for informal contact across all staff every fortnight, keeping people in touch with colleagues on a more personal level.”
Given our recent growth in staff numbers we have introduced more social and community events; led by our culture committee, run by staff for staff. The committee engages with the entire organisation by brainstorming ideas and is responsible for putting plans in place for social, charity and health & wellbeing activities.
We're big advocates for giving back to our local communities and regularly work with local schools through our volunteering policy, as well as encouraging staff to support other causes they feel are important through our volunteering days.
Better for the planet
Sustainability plays a key role in how we operate. We have a number of policies in place to minimise our carbon impact. With a vision of achieving carbon net zero in 2025, we currently offset emissions for all staff and work to reduce any negative impact of all our operations, such as travel. So far, we have offset over 670 tonnes of CO2 and plan on continuing our journey to make a positive impact on the planet.
As a digital agency, we know that digital efficiency and climate action work in tandem. We wanted to both reduce our impact and work in the most effective ways possible. Last year, we introduced a new, low-carbon website — reducing our digital emissions by over 99%.
As a business grounded in technology, we have also set up various policies to minimise the digital carbon impact of our operations. This is a personal commitment of ours – B Corp™ doesn’t currently assess digital sustainability directly – but it very much aligns with our ambition to lead and impact the conversation around digital sustainability.
B Corp™ is all about having a greater sense of purpose. And so being a B Corp™ really is a never-ending journey. We're working hard now to make sure that we'll exceed our current score when we are reassessed in three short years' time.
The UK B Corp™ community is one of the fastest-growing in the world. According to recent data, the awareness of the B Corp™ Certification process has increased rapidly over the past two years. The overall recall among UK adults of the B Corp™ logo and name is now at 34%, a huge achievement for the B Corporation movement as a whole. We're delighted to be part of that and will continue to raise awareness and share know-how through our own credentials.
What this means to us
Chief Executive Officer, Collette Easton, shared: “We are incredibly proud that we have now been recognised as achieving this first milestone. However, the work doesn’t stop here. We will continue to strive to evolve our working culture in support of our staff, to foster happy and motivated teams, and provide innovation for our clients. We are very proud of our client partnerships, the majority of whom we have worked with over many years.
At Yard, our core pillars are to deliver the right solutions, for our clients, profitably, by happy people. This means continuing to drive innovation, efficiency and sustainability, always working to develop our culture in these ever-changing ways of working, whether environmental or culturally.”
Stephan Briggs, Co-Founder of Yard, added,
“I’m really proud that Yard is now a B Corp Certified business – it’s a testament to our hard work and long-term commitments. Becoming a B Corp isn’t about reaching a destination and stopping there. It’s more like an important stop on the road to becoming a business that is internally and externally more self-aware. I hope that within the next few years, the majority of businesses will have made a similar type of commitment that they can demonstrate with transparency. There’s certainly a lot more that can be achieved by all.”
It's time to create a step change.