Certified B Corp
BVDV is officially certified as a ‘B Corp’ (Benefit Corporation). As such, our law firm is part of a worldwide network of organisations that contribute toward achieving a sustainable and responsible society. BVDV is the first law and tax consultancy firm in the Netherlands to be awarded this certification. The certificate is awarded to companies with a social and/or ecological impact, who take responsibility, are transparent as well as make a contribution to the economy of the future. At present, there are nearly four thousand B Corps worldwide in over thirty countries.
Social impact, responsibility, transparency and sustainability
B Corp is an American organisation that is focused on building an international network of companies that promote sustainable projects. The companies involved set the bar high in terms of social and/or ecological impact, transparency, and responsibility. The business performance standards are comprehensive, in depth, and transparent, measuring the impact of a company in terms of all its stakeholders, such as employees, suppliers, society and the environment. Unlike traditional organisations, certified B Corporations feel an obligation to assess the impact of their decisions not only in terms of the interests of their shareholders, but in terms of all other stakeholders.
The certification goes towards defining BVDV all the more as a ‘social enterprise’. We are very pleased with that status, as it allows us to set a good and clear example to our clients and other organisations, enabling us to inspire them to make a similar impact contribution. Within BVDV, a lot of things work very differently than they do in traditional law and tax consultancy firms. This entails key advantages for our employees as well as our clients. We are a commercial company, but are simultaneously responsible, fair, flexible and innovative, both internally in respect of our colleagues, and externally in respect of our clients. Our rates are lower and each employee, for example, has the freedom to make their own financial arrangements with individual clients. At BVDV, clients pay for the work, not the costly overhead. For that reason, the ‘office surcharge’ often billed by traditional law firms has been scrapped.
In order to become B Corp certified, companies are subjected to an extensive investigation in which the following categories are evaluated: management, staff, society and the environment. Our law firm achieved a particularly high score in the ‘management and staff’ category. Other B Corp companies in the Netherlands include Dopper and Tony’s Chocolonely. In global terms, BVDV sits alongside Ben & Jerry’s in the B Corp family.
‘Best for workers’
On 8 September 2016, BVDV was put on the ‘Best for workers’ list for 2016 by B Lab and thereby included among the 10% of companies with the highest scores. B Lab cited BVDV ‘for creating the most positive overall community impact by B the Change Media based on an independent, comprehensive assessment administered by the independent nonprofit B Lab’. In addition, BVDV was featured in the autumn issue of B Magazine as well as on the digital platform, B the Change, bthechange.com.