Pest control feature articles, stories and analysis

31 October 2022

Corporate social responsibility: what kind of impact can a pest management company create?

BUSINESS | PPC109 October 2022

When we hear the phrase ‘corporate social responsibility’ we often think about mega organisations and their box-ticking; things that companies do to make themselves look good for a PR opportunity.

PPC regular Michael Coates explains how that doesn’t have to be the case. All can embrace CSR to positively impact the communities they serve.

corp social hero

Corporate social responsibility has changed the way we, as consumers, think businesses can impact society, away from their actual products or services. 

At its most basic level, corporate social responsibility is where businesses aim to contribute to society through activism or charitable practices. 

Many large (and small) companies are now B-Corp certified which ensures accountability to people and the planet, via a strict assessment and ongoing reporting

And to younger generations of consumers, socially responsible companies are more important than ever. It’s now a common belief that companies should be investing in improving things for their employees, society or communities.

What’s in it for you?

  • Many benefits come by improving your approach to corporate social responsibility, here are a few:
  • Improved psychological well-being (for you and your team). Studies have shown giving to charity improves mood, boosts self esteem, can improve drive and motivation
  • You become more interesting – this could be to potential new staff, customers, partners, local or national media outlets
  • Better team cohesion
  • The opportunity to meet and work with different people and businesses
  • Improved, positive brand reputation and better brand recognition.

Improve employees’ benefits

  • Provide employees one day off per year for attending or hosting charity events/fundraisers
  • Make recycling and reducing waste a corporate goal – you could even put an employee in charge of it, providing them the opportunity to beef up their skillbase in the process
  • Improve your workplace policies, such as maternity and paternity benefits, holiday entitlement or your equality, diversity and inclusion policies
  • Do a salary benchmarking exercise, so your employees feel valued and you can be sure you’re paying them adequately
  • Ask around your community – is there a local school that needs a new summer house? Or a dementia-friendly garden that needs building?
  • Create a direct debit to a charitable cause
  • Organise a company fundraiser
  • Explore charitable partnerships.

Whatever you do, make it meaningful and relevant to you. Oh, and be consistent.

Start small, think big

Sometimes these acts of corporate social responsibility are easy to put off for sometime in the future. Common deflections include ‘maybe when we are bigger’, ‘when we make more profit’ and ‘if only we had more time’. 

But, like anything positive, starting small is often best. If you want to get physically fit you don’t start by running a marathon, you start by going for a ten minute walk and build up slowly. Yet, you are still getting fitter.

If you wait for the perfect time to run 26.2 miles, those miles will never come because there’s no such thing as a perfect time.

Start with the micro. Do something small; it may look like a drop in the ocean but doing something small enough times makes a big difference.

Externally, this can be as simple as donating monthly to a charity. Internally, you could take a look at the benefits your employees get – can you improve them?

Every action you take is a vote for the type of person you wish to become.

Frequency of impact

To quote James Clear, author of the book Atomic Habits: “Every action you take is a vote for the type of person you wish to become”.

This quote resonates with me a lot, especially when it comes to providing social impact.

Combat Pest Control has a four-point vision, which we stick to through thick and thin. Part of this vision is to ‘educate and assist children in conflict’. This has been the way since day one and will never change, but to enable this to happen we had to create systems that allowed us to fulfil our vision – operation, financial, admin and vision systems.

Part of this vision system is to (at the end of each month) count up our invoices (we now break it down to domestic and non-domestic). The number of invoices created guides the amount of days of assistance we provide to children in conflict.

At the start, when it was only three of us and two vans, we might provide 30 days of education.

Now we are substantially larger, and provided over 2,000 days last month alone. Over time this builds up and the tiny micro impacts create a huge crater of positivity.

My main point here is that you need to create systems that work for you and that allow positive habits to form and social impact to be made.


Reporting is a great way to assess what you are doing and what you can do better. Across business this is an essential task.

And you can do it with your social accountability. But don’t fear, it can be as simple as counting invoices or searching a charity name in your banking app. It doesn’t have to be overly-complicated.

Celebrating impact

I have always thought celebrating and communicating your impact to be extremely useful. 

Yes, it allows you to be creative around newsletters, training your team or social media posts. But it also does something else remarkable: it inspires others to take action. 

This is the main reason why I have written this article. I want other pest control companies to follow suit and start impacting the world positively (if you aren’t already, because we know many of you do some amazing community work).

Supply chain

Something often overlooked is your supply chain, especially if you are a large company and subcontract work.

We choose people to work with on a daily basis when running a business, and there’s nothing to stop us looking at the companies we buy from, use or contract into, and see what they are doing in their communities, for our environment or what their social impact is in general.

And it goes the other way too. As a company we report and communicate to our clients large and small on our social impact activities. And we are often asked by potential clients what we do in regards to CSR. For us this is a simple conversation to have and often sets us apart.


Whoever you work with or donate to, you need to look at your combined core values. It is almost impossible to forge a long lasting partnership if your values do not align.

Unsure of your values? Write them down! Use other businesses’ values as inspiration, such as BPCA’s: passion, integrity, expertise and support.

You and your business should be guided by values you hold dear, and it’s important to work with others that share similar ones.

Want more?

For more information on corporate social responsibility, visit
Combat Pest Control’s impact report:

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