Certificazione BCorp_Welfare Aziendale_Eudaimon
25 March 2024

B Corp certification for Benefit Corporations: let's clarify!

It is increasingly common to hear about "B Corp" certification for companies and/or to see the Certified B Corporation®️ brand on company websites or on official graphics and packaging.

But what does it mean to have a B Corp certification and therefore be a Benefit Company, in practice? Should it also be a parameter to be considered by the buyer to make informed choices?

How is this certification obtained and what is it guaranteed? Does corporate welfare affect obtaining certification?

In this article we will therefore answer the most common questions we are asked about, hoping to satisfy any doubts about the acronym "Certified B Corporation®️".

B Corp” mean ?

"B Corp" stands for Benefit Corporation , which in Italian can be translated as "Benefit Company" .

Benefit Corporations, i.e. certified B Corp companies, are required to respect specific reporting and transparency standards , higher than the norm, and to demonstrate how they are contributing to the common good.

This type of business structure is designed to encourage companies to also consider the social and environmental impact of their activities, in addition to financial profitability.

What is meant by Benefit Corporation?

The term "Benefit Corporation" refers to a specific type of corporate structure, which - regardless of its size - is committed to pursuing social and environmental objectives , in addition to purely financial ones.

Benefit Corporations are therefore legally bound to consider the social and environmental impacts of their business decisions and are subject to a greater degree of social responsibility and transparency.

Registering as a Benefit Corporation can vary between jurisdictions, but generally requires the company to explicitly declare its non-financial objectives and measure its impact in an ethical way.

In many cases, Benefit Corporations are associated with social enterprise and sustainability movements, reflecting a growing interest in business to integrate social and environmental concerns into business decisions.

But based on what parameters can one be defined as a "Benefit Company" or not? Let's see it.

What is B impact assessment and how does it work?

The B Impact Assessment (BIA) is the tool used by B Lab* to measure company performance in terms of social and environmental impact.

This assessment tool provides an in-depth analysis of business practices in different areas, allowing companies to evaluate and improve not only their financial, but also social and environmental impact.

The assessment process involves a series of questions divided into categories, such as governance, workers, community, environment and customers.

These questions are specifically designed to evaluate company behavior and policies in each area and the answers are then analyzed by assigning an overall score or B Corp score **.

The objective of the B Impact Assessment is to provide companies with an objective tool to evaluate and improve their sustainable practices and to demonstrate their commitment to a positive impact on society and the environment.

Getting a high score on the BIA is therefore a requirement for obtaining Benefit Corporation certification, but many companies still use the tool even without pursuing certification, to get feedback on their sustainable practices and to identify strengths or weaknesses.

*Who issues B Corp certification?

B Corp certification is issued by B Lab , a non-profit organization founded in 2006.

B Lab is the certification body for Benefit Corporation companies, which developed the B Impact Assessment (BIA) and which issues the official B Corp certification, only and exclusively to companies capable of exceeding a certain score in the B Impact Assessment and to demonstrate its commitment to balancing profit with the pursuit of the common good.

**What is the B Corp Score?

The B Corp Score is the score obtained by a company during the B Impact Assessment (BIA).

As we were saying, in fact, the BIA is made up of a series of questions, the answers to which are evaluated and weighted, assigning an overall score.

The B Corp Score can therefore vary from 0 to 200 and - in order to obtain B Corp certification - it is necessary to obtain a minimum score of 80.

A high score inevitably indicates that the company is adopting advanced and sustainable practices, demonstrating a significant commitment to corporate social responsibility and positive impact on society and the environment.

How long does B Corp certification last?

The B Corp certification obviously has a limited validity and companies are required to periodically undergo new assessments, to confirm that they maintain the necessary requirements for certified B Corp status.

To date, certification renewal is expected every 3 years.

During this period, certified companies must maintain their commitments and continue to comply with the social and environmental responsibility standards established by B Lab.

At the end of the three years, companies must undergo a new assessment - again through the B Impact Assessment (BIA) - to confirm that they continue to meet the required standards.

The review also includes a verification process and, if the company successfully passes this stage, it can obtain reconfirmation of its B Corp certification.

It is important to note that B Corp certification requires an ongoing commitment from companies to maintain sustainable and responsible practices.

The review process ensures that certified companies maintain the required standards over time.

In this way, B Corp certification is designed to always be dynamic and adapt to evolving business practices and emerging standards in the field of sustainability and corporate social responsibility.

But is it a free certification or do you pay every 3 years?

How much does B Corp certification cost?

Certification is not free; However, the rates for obtaining B Corp certification vary based on several factors, including the size and turnover of the company.

Factors that influence the amount of B Corp certification fees include:

the turnover

Companies are divided into different bands based on their annual turnover. The increase in tariffs is directly proportional to the increase in turnover.

The dimensions

Small businesses can benefit from preferential rates, compared to large companies.

Type of organization

There are different rates for businesses, non-profit organizations or other types of organizations.

In any case, companies interested in obtaining B Corp certification can find more detailed and always updated information on the fee structure on the official B Lab website.

Furthermore, B Lab offers resources and support to guide companies through the certification process, answering any questions also regarding individual tariffs.

B Corp Certification and Corporate Welfare

B Corp certification and Corporate Welfareare both initiatives that promote sustainability, corporate social responsibility and employee well-being. However, they are obviously distinct concepts.

It is therefore inevitable to ask…

Can Welfare influence the decision-making phase on assigning B Corp certification to a company?

Yes, corporate welfare can positively influence the process of obtaining B Corp certification.

In fact, B Corp certification evaluates various areas of impact, including corporate social responsibility and commitment towards employees.

Corporate welfare practices can therefore contribute more significantly than one might think in demonstrating this commitment.

Here are the parameters in which corporate welfare can affect obtaining B Corp certification:

● Social impact

Caring for employee well-being is considered an important element of a company's social impact. Corporate welfare programs, such as healthcare, personal and professional development programs, work-life balance initiatives, can demonstrate a strong commitment to improving the quality of life of employees.


governance (the set of principles, rules and/or management or governmental procedures of a company) is also one of the aspects assessed in the B Corp certification. A company that implements corporate welfare practices can certainly demonstrate a governance oriented towards employee well-being, highlighting responsible management that is attentive to social impacts.

Corporate culture

That is, the commitment to socially responsible values. Promoting employee well-being through welfare initiatives can have a positive impact on corporate culture, highlighting an authentic commitment to social responsibility.

Talent attraction and retention

As we said here, a good corporate welfare program can contribute to attracting and retaining talent. Having satisfied and engaged employees can - in turn - be considered a positive indicator when evaluating to obtain B Corp certification.

It is obviously important to note that the B Corp certification process always involves an in-depth evaluation of various company aspects, so corporate welfare is only one of the elements taken into consideration and its impact is relative.

However, demonstrating an interest in the well-being of your employees can certainly increase your prospects of obtaining certification, as well as promoting a balanced work-life balance [2] and preventing or reducing the phenomenon of disaffection at work.

Summing up…

So how do you become a B Company ? Practical guide

To become a B Corporation (B Corp), a company must follow some specific steps.

Here is a general overview of the process:

  • First phase of preparation and evaluation

The company should start by completing the B Impact Assessment (you can complete the BIA for free online).

  • Achieving the necessary score (minimum 80 / 200)
  • Review and verification

After obtaining a sufficient score, the company must undergo further review and verification by B Lab. This process includes validation of the answers provided in the BIA and may also involve interviews and requests for additional documentation.

  • Legal commitment

The company must issue a legal Term Sheet, committing to consider not only financial performance, but also social and environmental impact in its business decisions.

  • Completion of certification

Once the audit has also been passed, the company can obtain the official B Corp certification. This certification is valid for a period of time, and companies must periodically undergo a new assessment to maintain the B Corp status.

  • Integrationof business strategy

B Corp companies are encouraged to integrate corporate social responsibility into their daily operations, demonstrating an ongoing commitment to the balance between profit and positive impact on society and the environment.

Why become a B Corp?

Here are some of the reasons that increasingly push companies to seek B Corp certification:

● loyalty to its corporate, social and environmental mission .

● Greater attractiveness to both customers and talent.

Differentiation from the competition.

● Gain access to sustainable resources and investments.

● Long-term resilience .

● Improvement of corporate reputation .

In summary, deciding to become a B Corp is not only an ethical choice, but also a strategic one , capable of contributing to integrating sustainability and social responsibility into the corporate identity, generating benefits both for the company and for society as a whole. complex.

What is B Corp Interdependence Statement?

The "Declaration of Interdependence B Corp" is a symbolic but fundamental declaration , which underlines respect for the principles and ideals shared by companies that aspire to become B Corp.

The text of the statement reflects the importance of considering the impacts of corporate decisions not only on shareholders, but also on employees, the community, the environment and society as a whole.

The B Corp Declaration of Interdependence therefore serves to communicate and highlight a common philosophy among B Corp companies and to underline the commitment to a commercial approach that balances financial needs with social and environmental ones.

This document - as we were saying - is symbolic and is also often used to inspire a sense of community among all companies that share similar values of corporate social responsibility.

But how many Benefit Companies are we talking about?

How many B Corps are there in the world today?

As of 2023, there will be over 6,800 B Corps spread across the world, of which over 1,300 in the European Union.

How many B Corps are there in Italy?

Coming to us, Italy today is one of the 3 European countries most committed to sustainability, with a total of 231 Italian B Corp companies , preceded only by France (304 B Corp) and followed by the Netherlands (212 B Corp) .

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