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The genesis of The Social Value Practice is rooted in a pit village in County Durham where founder Neil Capstick grew up.

A tight-knit local community made up of miners, railwaymen and farmers, it was a thriving and vibrant place to grow up, but even then, the challenges of a changing world were beginning to have an effect. The mid-sixties saw the drift mines close and the seventies and eighties heralded changes in farming and industry, the impact of which the North East would feel for decades to come. Even now the legacy of these changes is still being felt. The North East was not alone and huge swathes of industrial towns and villages across Britain have been affected.

Our aim

The passing of the Public Services (Social Value) Act in 2012 (Social Value Act) changed the way publicly accountable organisations contract. It has meant that local needs and local businesses could be prioritised, and redefined “Best Economic Value” (BEV). Our involvement in writing tenders made us realise that we could contribute by helping our customers win more tenders at the same time as contributing to the success of their local community.

The aim of the Social Value Practice is to help organisations meet the requirements of the Act but importantly, to help them to provide real social value and impact by doing the right thing, at the right time for the right people.

The social value movement

Every organisation should want to be involved in providing social value in some way: it’s the right thing to do. However, there is clearly a commercial imperative to implement and embrace social value as more and more public sector contracts include social value in their evaluation criteria.

In addition, today’s employees expect more from their employers in terms of their approach to community involvement and that their employer acts ethically, honestly and sustainably. The simple truth is that organisations that embrace social value can expect to find it easier to attract and retain talent at all levels of their organisation. In addition, company reputation, customer loyalty, staff motivation and increased productivity are some of the benefits organisations have experienced following the adoption of social value principles. All of these benefits are in addition to the impact they can make to their local communities.

Social value doesn’t have to be expensive or complex to implement; in fact, most organisations are generating social value inherently but don’t think about it in those terms.

Our mission is simple

To support organisations to become aware of, understand, commit and consistently apply social value principles to their business activities so that society and the organisations themselves may benefit.