1,500 B Corps later: what does our community say about the movement? - B Lab UK

1,500 B Corps later: what does our community say about the movement?

Our 1500 B Corp community is what makes the movement. Callaway McCarren, Engagement Coordinator at B Lab UK reflects on the Community Engagement Survey results.

Group of people surrounding a bar with name tags drinking food and alcohol

Our community, now made up of 1,500 businesses spread across the UK, is what makes the B Corp movement. It was only in November last year that we came together to celebrate hitting 1,000 B Corps — a milestone that demonstrated what it means to have the collective strength of so many businesses pushing the B Corp mission forward. Looking back at our rapid growth, one thing is abundantly clear: there is an ever-growing appetite for business to be used as a force for good.

To B Lab UK, the importance of the existing and prospective UK B Corp community cannot be understated. Not only are they a driving force behind the rapid growth of the movement, but they are crucial to its continued success. As the community team, our goal is to ensure we are doing all we can to help UK B Corps make the most of their certification. 

With this in mind, we wanted to share a snapshot of the data from last year’s Community Engagement Survey, diving into what B Corps see as the value of certification, areas for improvement, and a glimpse of what’s to come.

This survey is conducted on an annual basis and sent out to B Corp CEOs. Not only does it inform and steer our engagement efforts and resources, but it also provides invaluable insight into how B Corp leaders perceive their certification.

  • How has it transformed their business, both in terms of impact and operations?
  • What is the value of being a B Corp?
  • How can B Lab UK best support their ongoing journey?

Community Engagement Survey results

  • 4 (1)
  • 3 (1)
  • 7
  • 5 (2)
  • 6 (2)

The results are in: not only do B Corps find that acting as a force for good is good for business, they also see how joining forces with like-minded businesses is contributing to real, systemic change. Whether through the Better Business Act, participating in one of our Working Groups or driving change regionally with our B Locals, it’s clear that B Corps are better, together.

While these metrics are certainly positive, we know there is always room to grow. One area we’re moving the needle on is impact improvement, in the form of score increases. 

B Corps must recertify once every three years to ensure they are maintaining the high standard of social and environmental impact required to retain their certification. Across 2022, the average score increase in the UK community was sitting at just 11 points. Meanwhile, in the first half of 2023, the average increase was at 15 points, and is looking to shift towards a 20 point average by the end of this year.

Nearly all of the highest score increases this year were from small to medium businesses, which make up the majority of the UK B Corp community. Though the certification process may look a little different for larger businesses with more complex supply chains and governance structures, this statistic begs the question: how can we bring businesses of all shapes and sizes into the B Corp community? How can B Corps push others to go further, faster?

These, among other questions, are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the future of the B Corp movement. As we approach the second public consultation into the evolution of B Corp standards, we’ll look to our community, now 1,500 strong, to drive one another towards continuous improvement as a collective force. We’re excited to see what the next phase of growth holds.

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