A guide to B Corp certification

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  • A simple 5 step overview to achieving and maintaining B Corp certification

  • Who can certify?

    You can certify as a B Corp if you operate for profit in a competitive market, and have at least 12 months of operations

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    Certifying as a B Corp means joining a global community of over 5,000 businesses and leaders with a shared belief that business can be a benefit for the world and for the people who live in it. 

    Assessed and verified by B Lab, B Corps commit to meeting high standards of social and environmental performance, transparency and accountability.

  • Step 01

    The B Impact Assessment

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    The first step in pursuing B Corp certification is to complete and submit the free B Impact Assessment (BIA), a confidential online tool used to measure, improve and verify your company's social and environmental performance

  • About the BIA: 

    • Roughly 200 questions

    • Tailored to your company’s size, sector and location

    • Measures your positive impact on your workers, suppliers, community and the environment

    • Includes a Disclosure Questionnaire, highlighting any sensitive practices, fines, and sanctions related to the company

    • 80+ points are required to achieve B Corp certification 

  • Step 02

    Improving your BIA score

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    B Corp certification requires a B Impact Assessment score of 80+ points. It’s rare to achieve this first time and most businesses will spend time improving their score. 

  • Tools to help you improve your score 

    A number of tools are built into the BIA to help your business enhance its impact score:

    • Adding team members and exporting the assessment for easy organising and prioritising
    • An Improvement Report and goal setting function 
    • A comprehensive Knowledge Base with best practice guides

     

  • Step 03

    Meeting the legal requirement

  • Your business must also complete the B Corp legal requirement by amending your governing documents.

    Meeting the legal requirement

    In making the B Corp legal change,  your business will be required to adopt specific wording into your Articles of Association to reflect a commitment to creating a material positive impact on society and the environment, and to consider the impact of your decisions on all of your stakeholders, including shareholders, employees, suppliers, society and the environment.

    Once amended, the company’s Articles will be filed with Companies House and will serve to protect the company’s mission whilst empowering directors to consider wider stakeholder interests and make mission-aligned decisions over time.

  • Step 04

    Submit & Review

  • Once your BIA score is 80+ points and you have completed the Disclosure Questionnaire, you are ready to submit your assessment for review by B Lab.  Your Review is an opportunity to keep working on improvements, engage with B Lab and evidence your impact.

    Evaluation and Verification

    The initial stage in this process is the Evaluation stage, which includes background checks on your  company’s eligibility and a high level score screen.

    You then progress to Verification, where a standards analyst will request supporting evidence on your assessment for discussion on your review call.  During this process, your score could change, so it is better to answer the assessment conservatively and submit in excess of 80 points.

    Information about the review timeline can be found here.

  • Step 05

    After you certify

  • Once your company has met all the requirements, congratulations – you’re now a certified B Corp!

    What happens next?

    Now you’ll be asked to sign the B Corp Agreement and pay your annual fee. You can also begin to fly the B Corp flag and celebrate your certification with your employees, suppliers and customers, as well as attend community events and working groups.

     

    To maintain your B Corp certification, you need to recertify every three years, achieving a verified score of 80+ points on the B Impact Assessment. You’re required to publish an annual impact report to share your progress and goals. 

     

    Eager to dive into more detail about the process? Click here to learn more about the certification process. 

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    Are you ready to dive into more detail?

    We've created a downloadable guide that provides further information about the five key stages of B Corp Certification.