The property market’s premier furnishing service

David Phillips CSR Policy

We believe that the long-term future of the Company is best guaranteed by respecting the interests of all our stakeholders: employees, customers, suppliers and the communities that ultimately benefit from the work we do. We continually look for opportunities to improve the environment and to improve the lives of everyone impacted by our operations. Our CSR policy sets out the principles we follow and the activities we undertake to directly make a difference or influence others to do so.

Shared responsibility

Social and environmental responsibility involves everyone. We believe that it is shared by our employees, suppliers and customers, and we aim to develop and implement social and environmental policies which fit in with our everyday activities and responsibilities.

Honesty and accountability

We communicate our environmental policies, objectives and performance openly and honestly to all of our employees and to others with an interest in our activities, including customers and suppliers. We encourage them to communicate with us and will seek their views.

Sustainable progress

We are committed to improving our performance, and take into account technical developments, changing scientific evidence, costs and customer concerns and expectations in the development and implementation of all new social and environmental policies and procedures. We monitor our performance and set objectives for improvements.

Demonstrable compliance

As a minimum, we meet or exceed all relevant legislation. Where no legislation exists we seek to develop and implement our own appropriate standards.

Environment

We will take all reasonable steps to manage our operations and those of our suppliers to minimise our environmental impact and to promote good environmental practice. We set and follow high standards in all of our operations and those of our suppliers. We promote responsible and sustainable methods of production, distribution and installation, and regularly review our business practices and performance to identify how we can improve our energy efficiency, minimise packaging, reduce waste in production and reduce water usage, waste disposal and air emissions.

Relationships

We conduct our business relationships with integrity and courtesy, and honour our trading commitments. Our aim is to build long-term relationships with our suppliers and enable them to flourish and grow. We are committed to trading fairly with all our suppliers, and communicate our responsible sourcing expectations to them in the areas of health, safety and worker welfare, sustainable and profitable agriculture, high animal welfare standards, biodiversity and good environmental practice.

Communities

We build relationships with our customers, suppliers and the local communities we are part of by encouraging our employees to consider the needs of others and get involved in their local communities.

Employees

We respect our employees and encourage their development and training. We promote equality across the business and encourage all members of the team to consider the interests of fellow employees and others around them including their welfare, health and safety. We empower employees to take responsibility and ownership and we recognise individual contributions and reward our employees fairly. Our ultimate aim is the happiness of our members through their worthwhile and satisfying employment in a successful business.

Managing sustainability

As a responsible organisation we recognise that the management of social, ethical and environmental issues involves everyone.

Principal authority and accountability for environmental and social sustainability rests with the CEO. He is supported by the executive team who are responsible for developing sustainability strategy, policies and objectives for the business.

Operational management responsibility for environmental sustainability is delegated from the CEO to the Group’s COO, who in turn delegates responsibility on individual managers and employees within the business to ensure that we meet the high standards expected.

Operational management responsibility for social responsibility and inclusion is delegated from the CEO to the Group’s marketing director to ensure that engage our employees, customers and suppliers in continuing to make a real difference.

Our employees need little encouragement to get involved in their local communities, and have given both their time and money to support local and national initiatives that seek to improve the lives of others.

Charities

At David Phillips we are dedicated to creating comfortable, liveable homes and homes-from-home, and our charity support and donation policy is aligned to this. We favour charities in which our employees are personally involved in some way and that seek to address issues around homelessness or creating homely environments for young and disadvantaged members of our society.

The level and type of support varies widely – from donating furniture to help furnish a hostel for young adults to employees raising money for Great Ormond Street Hospital for Sick Children to buy new furniture for the family room.

We do not give to individuals, religious, ethnic or political causes.

We believe that it’s only by dealing with our customers honestly that we will earn their trust and respect, and we take this responsibility very seriously.

Our customers rely on us to give them honest, expert advice to help them make the most of their investment, and we do this even if it means they don’t like what we have to say. We pride ourselves on our experience and expertise derived from almost one million deliveries and installations, and our knowledge of furnishing property and accommodation markets is unmatched in the UK.

We endeavor to deliver value for money, quality and choice to all of our customers – regardless of their budget and other constraints. We listen carefully to our customers, and carry out regular research to find out what they think about the service we offer.

We’re proud to have won a number of prestigious awards for our customer service over the years:

  • 2012-2013 Landlord & Letting Award: Customer service & best supplier
  • 2013-2014 Landlord & Letting Award: Customer service
  • 2014-2015 Landlord & Letting Award: Customer service

Customer research and feedback

We continually ask our customers to tell us how we are doing, and invite all of them to review our services using an independent review centre – we are consistently over 95% by our customers. Of course things don’t go according to plan 100% of the time, and we do our best to resolve issues as quickly as possible.

We also conduct in-depth research among our customers using an independent research agency to help us develop our product and service offering to ensure that it remains relevant and attractive to them.

We value our employees above all others, as they are the most important part of any company’s success. To this end, we endeavor to:

  • Recruit and retain talented people;
  • Provide training and development to help employees grow in professional stature and develop their own career paths
  • Engage with our employees and listen to what they have to say
  • Make the most of the contribution, skills, talent and experience of our employees

We believe that there is more to a job than just work and pay. We encourage employees to strike a work-life balance and therefore stay happy, healthy and committed to long-term careers with David Phillips.

We encourage employees to reach their full potential and, to this end, favour internal promotion over recruiting from outside the business.

Equal opportunities

We aim to nurture a culture that values diversity – not just within the Company, but also among customers, suppliers and all those who we engage with. Our approach is founded on some core beliefs:

  • Employees are treated as individuals and with respect, honesty and fairness
  • We are an equal opportunities employer, providing opportunities for all regardless of age, gender, ethnicity, social background, religion, disability or sexuality

We encourage our suppliers to be the same, and assessing their approach to diversity comprises part of the methodology we use when evaluating suppliers.

Health & Safety

We are committed to ensuring that we provide and maintain a safe and healthy place for our employees, customers and visitors to work in. We use recognised systems and procedures to assess, identify and manage risk in all of our locations and when working offsite on the road or in all of our customers’ properties.

With responsibility for health and safety delegated by our CEO to the Group’s COO, he is responsible for interpreting health and safety legislation and advising and guiding managers in managing safely in all of our locations and offsite in others’. He is responsible for assisting in the development of safety management systems and monitoring safety performance. He is also responsible for advising on safety control standards and for leading investigations into significant incidents.

Risk management

Our procedures are designed so that managers at all levels can focus on the most significant risks first. This ensures that resources are focused in the right place at the right time.

While we are primarily focused on prevention, it is inevitable that incidents will occur. No company can run a zero-risk operation, so we take care to record our efforts to manage risks to socially acceptable levels.

We investigate all significant incidents regardless of actual outcome to identify why things went wrong and how we can avoid it happening again – putting in place remedial and preventative measures as necessary.

Key features of our approach are:

  • A risk assessment based approach to our operating environments and processes
  • Appropriate safety and occupational health measures are developed and implemented for each location
  • Appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE) is provided to all employees who require it
  • Employees required to drive a company vehicle or operate manchinery are appropriately trained and, where relevant, receive approved training to operate at the standard required
  • Our vehicle fleet is modern and correctly maintained
  • Employees receive appropriate Health & Safety training
  • Matters relating to Health & Safety are reported and discussed at Board level as part of the standing agenda

We take our responsibility to reduce environmental impact seriously, and promote good environmental practice throughout the Company.

Our business has grown rapidly since 1998 and continues to do so, and this presents a challenge to us in minimising the environmental impact of our operations commensurate with the size of business. To this end, we have already taken significant steps to reduce waste and landfill, water and energy use, and run a more efficient delivery fleet.

  • We have invested in technology than enables us to plan delivery routes more effectively
  • We have invested in new digital platforms that enable our customers to do business with us digitally, thus reducing the amount of printed material we produce and encouraging our customers to ‘go digital’
  • We have worked with our suppliers to encourage them to use processes, materials and finishes that have a lower environmental impact
  • We offer our customers a responsible furniture and appliance removal service that ensures that their unwanted furniture is either recycled or disposed of responsibly

Our customers have a right to expect that the products they buy from us be sourced responsibly, and we are committed to selling products that meet these standards, dealing fairly with our suppliers, and meeting the high expectations of our customers.

We offer almost 20,000 products to our customers that, in the global world in which we live, are manufactured in the UK, China, Europe and other countries. We work hard to ensure that all of the products we sell are safe to use, comply with legislation and have been sourced responsibly. We also support those in the supply chain in obeying the law, respecting their employees and reducing their impact on the environment.

Product safety, performance provenance and integrity

We want to be as sure as possible that the products that we sell are safe and perform as expected, and our product development and buying teams work closely with suppliers to ensure that they are safe in use and that they achieve the performance standards required. We also care about where the products we sell come from and the source of raw materials. Our approach to this comprises:

  • Ensuring that all upholstery products meet the required standards in respect of fire retardancy, and that they are correctly tested
  • Materials and finishes used comply with all safety legislation and, where there is a choice, have a lower environmental impact that the alternatives
  • We work with suppliers to help them understand the needs of our customers and the demanding environments in which their products will be placed, guiding them to achieve the highest possible level of durability whilst balancing the need to offer competitively priced products to our customers
  • We visit our suppliers regularly to carry out inspections and audits of their processes and procedures – from supply of raw materials through to delivery of finished products
  • Enquiries

    If you have any enquiries regarding an aspect of CSR, please contact us: company@davidphillips.com

The Modern Slavery Act requires businesses to publicly report the steps they have taken to ensure their operations and supply chains comply with the Act.

Respecting human rights is important to us, and alongside our established processes, we are conducting a review of our procedures to develop a human rights strategy which takes into consideration the requirements and the spirit of the Modern Slavery Act.

We will publish our revised procedures towards the middle of 2016 following on from our annual review of suppliers and the procedures relating to sourcing and supply chain.