Erste Bank a.d. Novi Sad is the member of Erste Group, financial institution with the tradition longer than 190 years, for which, the corporate social responsibility is, from the very beginning, an integral part of corporate philosophy and long-term business strategy. For us, the corporate social responsibility is a strategic framework for company governance, based on investment in long-term and stable relations with all key stakeholders: employees, clients, and fellow citizens in local communities we operate in, and on a commitment to provide active contribution to the development and welfare of the society where we are an inseparable part.
Experience has shown that, in the period of global integrations, it is not possible to apply usual operation methods: local crises very quickly become global ones, and economic issues are closely related to the ecological and social ones; the consequence is that corporate, public, and non-profit sector may not act separately from each other to adequately respond to them. The corporate social responsibility is an approach enabling us to, acting in partnership with other sectors, more successfully face the challenges posed by such market. It is the concept stimulating us to be innovative, to encourage sustainable development, responsibly manage risk, and decrease costs, thus achieving better operational results for our clients and company, as well as for the communities we operate in.
The latest Erste Bank a.d. Novi Sad Corporate Social Responsibility Strategy is adopted for the period from 2015 to 2019, and it is built on the following principles:
- Connection with business – Erste Bank corporate social responsibility strategy is set up on the principle of connection with business and on the focus to the areas where the Bank has got major impact within each of the “pillars” of the corporate social responsibility.
- Balance – This principle relates to equal representation of social responsible practice within all areas of the Bank operation, as well as within all areas provided for in the Strategy. Application of this principle is necessary to respond to reasonable expectations of wide circle of the stakeholders.
- Holistic approach – Partial dealing with certain topics may provide good results and be a good basis to upgrade the activities, but it is necessary that set up strategic directions and practice continuingly include intention for holistic approach, i.e. to approach the topic within all of its aspects, including measurement of and reporting on results.
- Integrative approach – This Strategy is set up in such manner to rely on the existing mechanisms and built systems of governance and operation at the Bank, as well as on the mechanisms and results achieved through successful application of the Corporate Social Responsibility Strategy in the period 2012–2014.
The areas through which Erste Bank Corporate Social Responsibility Strategy is implemented include:
- Corporate governance
- Responsibility to clients
- Responsibility in work environment
- Responsibility in the supply chain
- Responsibility to local communities
- Responsibility to environment
Special characteristic of our engagement includes the efforts made to promote the corporate social responsibility concept in Serbia, both on our own example and through intensive cooperation with partners from public and non-profit sector. In accordance with such policy, our Bank became a member of the initiatives advocating the corporate social responsibility in Serbia, such as United Nations Global Accord for Serbia and and Forum for Responsible Business.
Reporting on the corporate social responsibility is an integral part of a broad process we are committed to on a long-term basis – continuing improvement of the Corporate Social Responsibility Strategy and socially responsible practices, in accordance with the needs of target groups and interest groups and individuals, i.e. all of our stakeholders, and with the market requirements and social environment. Since 2008, we have published annual reports on the social responsibility on a regular basis. Our objective is to, in a clear and transparent manner, present our stakeholders all of the activities and initiatives realised during one year, as well as to announce forthcoming plans and programmes.
Any additional questions, comments, and suggestions on the topic of the social responsibility may be sent by e-mail to the address: firstname.lastname@example.org