Many quick-service chains are investing a lot of time, money and resources into corporate social responsibility efforts, and Arby's is one of them. The chain has released its first full-scale report on its activity in this area, which is built around a four-prong approach to:
- Empower community youth.
- Develop employees professionally.
- Save earth's resources
- And promote better food quality and safety.
The report on the chain's progress documents the company's success in embedding those objectives into the brand, employees, franchisees and suppliers.
"Publishing our first CSR Report demonstrates Arby's investment in our guests, our team members and our communities," said Arby's CEO Paul Brown. "For more than 50 years, Arby's has strived to be an exceptional corporate citizen, and as we look toward the future, this report provides a roadmap that will guide our … approach to the business going forward by outlining both short- and long-term objectives for the organization."
The report highlights achievements and direction in each of the four areas.
- Youth empowerment: Arby's independent charitable Arby's Foundation has donated more than $76 million to youth-related causes nationally in the past 30 years. Last year, the foundation raised a record $3.7 million to support Share Our Strength's No Kid Hungry campaign and launched another program to eliminate hunger among schools kids over the summer by offering 1.6 million meals through a meal card program.
- Talent development:The chain has a program to help employees both set and achieve professional and personal goals by living the brand's six core values, to dream big, work hard, get (things) done, have fun, play fair and make a difference. This helped the brand win a spot last year among the National Association for Business Resources best and brightest companies to work for. The brand is a finalist for this honor again this year.
- Environmental stewardship: Not only did the brand achieve its goal to reduce energy consumption in company-owned restaurants by 15 percent between 2011 and 2016, but it also documented an 8.6 percent reduction in water use in the same period, resulting in $20.4 million of energy-related cost savings. It also joined the U.S. Department of Energy's Better Buildings Challenge.
- Adhere to best standards for food quality: Through its so-called "Fast Crafted" service, the company promotes speed and value of food delivery with a focus on the kind of customization and quality that higher-end restaurants are able to provide. The company is also working hard to do business with smaller, artisanal suppliers to provide fresh, safe, high-quality food ingredients, according to a news release.