REPORT | The rise of the social enterprise


Jane Kirk-Coughlan | Strategic Change Leader | Deloitte South Africa | mail me |

A social enterprise is an organisation whose mission combines revenue growth and profit-making with the need to respect and support its environment and stakeholder network.

This includes listening to, investing in, and actively managing the trends that are shaping today’s world. It is an organisation that shoulders its responsibility to be a good citizen (both inside and outside the organisation), serving as a role model for its peers and promoting a high degree of collaboration at every level of the organisation.

Citizens are looking to business to fill the void on critical issues such as income inequality, health care, diversity, and cybersecurity to help make the world more equal or fair.

Significant human capital trends for South Africa

The top five trends for South Africa in 2018, based on importance, are:

  1. Hyper-connected workplace
  2. People data
  3. Well-being
  4. The symphonic C-suite
  5. Citizenship and social impact

Other notable trends to consider include:

  1. New rewards
  2. From careers to experiences
  3. Ai, robotics, and automation
  4. The longevity dividend
  5. The workforce ecosystem

With technology enabling virtually every activity in an organisation, the evolving digital landscape requires South African executives to formulate strategies on which technologies to adopt, which to avoid, and why.

To drive real value through the new workforce ecosystem, organisations need to understand how to appeal to and engage with workers of all kinds.

2018 Deloitte Human Capital Trends Report

Click here to access the full report |

The South African country report is a companion to the Deloitte Global Human Capital Trends 2018 report, which is one of the largest of its kind in the world. Over 11,000 executives from 124 countries participated in the global survey, including 354 South African business and HR leaders.

These professionals offered insights into the future of work and human capital’s valuable role in shaping it. Our theme for this year, ‘The rise of the social enterprise’, reflects the shift in the growing importance of social capital in shaping an organisation’s purpose, guiding its relationships with stakeholders and influencing its ultimate success or failure.

In 2018, we are witnessing seismic changes in the workforce, the workplace, and the technologies used in the world of work. Organisations are no longer assessed based only on traditional metrics such as financial performance, or even the quality of their products or services.

Rather, organisations today are increasingly being judged on the basis of their relationships with their workers, their customers, and their communities, as well as their impact on society at large – what we see is a transformational shift from business enterprises into social enterprises.

In the last Deloitte Global Human Capital Trends report, we noted the movement of many organisations towards a ‘network of teams’ operating model that aims to enable greater collaboration and internal agility.

This movement has been joined by the growing shift from an internal, enterprise focus to an external, ecosystem one.

Organisations on the leading edge of both of these changes embody our concept of the social enterprise: an organisation that is alert enough to sense, and responsive enough to accommodate, the range and scope of stakeholder expectations and demands.




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