The economic Chamber of commerce Website
:: Social Responsibility Charter



1.1. Preliminary methodological remarks

The project of a social responsibility charter for the economic website and the spin-offs and means much to Treviso Chamber of Commerceand its special agency for innovation, Treviso Tecnologia: it was chosen as a new way of interacting with the local and national audience, also bearing in mind the international context in planning its translations into English, Spanish and Chinese by the end of 2010.

Direct contact with users has always been peculiar to this Website. This social responsibility charter is intended to be an additional valuable opportunity committed to transparency, offering new qualitative and quantitative elements with a strong focus on values, with the aim of disclosing the project activities and measuring the benefit they bring.
Our social responsibility charter is therefore aimed to satisfy our stakeholders' knowledge needs so that they can fully understand and evaluate the effects of the information actions carried out by this Website; moreover, our goals are made explicit and a global view on the activities is offered.
The usefulness of this tool can also be appreciated internally within the organisation, where both managers and staff members have the possibility to check whether goals and objectives have been achieved.

At present a check is only possible thanks to the reports submitted every six months, but from now on we wish to analyse data with a values approach as well.
It means taking a step forward towards transparency, relations and communication, since the six-month reports are not public though partially published by Treviso Chamber of Commerce in its bimonthly journal EMT “Economia della Marca Trevigiana” (i.e. the Economy of Treviso area).

In this way, we strive to account to our stakeholders, to local, regional, national and international trade associations and to the Italian Ministry of Economic Development and Italian Ministry of Agriculture for the reputation of, and, with the aim of officially providing accreditation to the Website in which their press releases are published.

This social responsibility charter will deal with the following issues:

1.2. Purposes

trevisobellunosystem editorial staff voluntarily decided to make use of a social responsibility charter defining the values we commit to respecting and diffusing, thus sharing the texture of its communication with users and stakeholders.

The route followed by our social responsibility charter dates back to 2002, when Treviso Chamber of Commerce edited the first CSR report. We subsequently developed more interest, after attending CSR workshops held by Treviso Chamber of Commerce, Treviso Tecnologia and Unioncamere Veneto.

We chose to deal with CSR issues due to increasingly more hits on our Website and to the multitude of pages available on the Internet, because we are committed to providing our users with the certainty of communication ethics, so that they can take advantage of contents respecting users and allowing a transparent and effective communication.

Responsible behaviour – to be intended as a strategic opportunity – and the objectives of this Website are collaborative elements within the Website management.

As a result, this social responsibility charter represents an opportunity:

  1. for self-evaluation aimed at an internal analysis which illustrates our daily “unplanned” responsible activities, in order to disclose the added value* of our projects, and make it known so that it could be hopefully transferred to other realities.
  2. to rely on a responsible competitive tool, rather than a cosmetic tool.
  3. to encourage socially responsible actions in other editorial environments.
  4. to enhance the work environment paying particular attention to sharing: this leads to a commitment to working which goes beyond duty.
  5. to maintain the Website's high reputation in favour of current and future users.
  6. to represent an attractive site for skilled human resources who may wish to share our values, and to retain the loyalty of current collaborators.

This social responsibility charter is, therefore, aimed to codify daily applied principles, shared by people who are involved – either directly or indirectly – in the editorial activities.

The objective is to highlight the values lying behind the editorial activities, with which trevisobellunosystem identifies itself at present and will be identified in the future.

It is intended to be a universally understood social responsibility charter, and the same clarity should apply to the principles to adhere to when using the, and logos.

This social responsibility charter incorporates the editorial staff's working style, the attentiveness towards internal staff members and all the involved stakeholders, that is, Italian and foreign users, either registered or not; fans and followers; suppliers; local P.A., i.e. trade associations and institutions; and international agencies, i.e. Italian Chambers of Commerce abroad, embassies and consulates.

1.3. The Website's added value

Although not measurable because it can not be concretely shown, the Website's added value might be considered high as it achieves its institutional goal, that is, to transfer knowledge and socio-economic information.

Indeed, the Website helps to disseminate socio-economic issues, especially:

The activities just mentioned are meant to foster:

Such objectives – though difficult to reach – have certainly improved remarkably thanks to the effects of trevisobellunosystem's activities on its numerous users. Even not considering occasional readers, a considerable number of web surfers exists, who consult and read the Website because they are interested in it and/or to satisfy their knowledge needs.

This mechanism helps to acquire knowledge and getting involved in initiatives which are essential for the economic and social development of all production activities.

As pointed out before, inclination to development already exists – though it is not measurable – and it will turn into economic added value when recovery begins, also thanks to the Website's activities.

1.4. Relations with stakeholders 

Constant stakeholder relations are conveyed through a particular style which the editorial staff employs in web marketing and customer care activities, as well as in the various stages of internal and external communication.

This relation is practically defined by:

Our relations with suppliers are based on consulting and involvement in the Website's activities, so that we can prevent them from being occasional.

1.5. Values distinguishing the Website's editorial staff

*The Carta di Treviso is an ethics code signed on 5 October 1990 by the Italian Order of Journalists, the Italian Press Federation and Telefono Azzurro – the Italian Child Helpline. Its aim was to rule on how information should deal with minors. The core of this document – which was accompanied by the relevant handbook on 25 November 1995 and revised and elaborated on 30 March 2006 – is to protect the identity, personality and rights of minors who are somehow involved in crimes, either as victims or offenders, or in circumstances that might upset their psycho-physical equilibrium. The same attention is guaranteed to all vulnerable subjects. The Carta di Treviso constitutes a binding norm of self-regulation for Italian journalists, as well as an exemplary and practical guide for communication professionals.

1.6. Mission

The official economic website of Treviso Chamber of Commerce is intended to work in the public interest conveying information without discriminating, in order to facilitate its audience's business and professional activities as well as their relationships.
It is intended to be a virtual showcase to promote the territory and local enterprises. Furthermore, it aims to be a pilot project to disseminate innovative and accessible web tools.

We trust in a shared approach to knowledge.
trevisobellunosystem was the first – out of Treviso Chamber of Commerce's websites – to develop an accessible version in 2006, which received the accessibility recognition and relevant logo from CNIPA (Italian National Centre for IT in Public Sector) in 2008 with its new graphic layout.
Additionally, it was the Chamber's first website to develop a mobile version.

1.7. Activities

A. Approach to users

  1. This Website offers customer-oriented services, that is, its core business is represented by users. Each activity and strategic choice is targeted at final users, planned to be useful, effective and timely, to the benefit of our audience's professional and business tasks.
    Thanks to the use of new technologies – commitment to technology –, the Website has the possibility to break down discrimination barriers and allow anyone to consult the news through, a tool accessible to blind and partially sighted people as well as to elderly users who feel their sight is weaker but who are a source of experience and good advice: we are committed to paying particular attention to experience. Furthermore, we also created the mobile version to better disseminate information and make it available to users who can't connect to the Internet via landline. This version works on mobile phones and pocket PCs.
  2. The same customer-oriented view applies to the use of language, which we choose to make easier by employing easier terminology to be universally understood.
  3. The Website is attentive to users' inquiries, to which we try to reply within a 48-hour time range. Whenever we are not able to deal with inquiries in due course, we guarantee to constantly inform users about the advancement of the process related to their specific request.
  4. During these years, the editorial staff has regularly forwarded relevant inquiries to local agencies allowing users to get in touch with them. It thus acted as an intermediary between institutions and citizens, working in full respect of the user as a person. In doing that, the editorial staff shared knowledge about the territory and the role of institutions.
  5. The Website is intended to work as an intermediary in summarising information to make it more usable and profitable.
  6. The Website behaves as an intermediary between institutions in Treviso, the Veneto region and Europe and the Ministries, to disseminate information which can be useful to citizens' life and professional activities but is usually difficult to reach for final users.
  7. Our databases are managed in full respect of Italian privacy law (D. Lgs. n. 196/2003 and subsequent amendments).
  8. Our foreign language versions are not basic translations, yet they undergo a careful localisation of contents: they are customised according to target cultures in terms of graphic design and selection of themes, but still maintaining our brand identity. It is an uninterrupted updating process which we carry out by analysing target countries and our foreign registered users' data in order to provide them with information to present our territory and companies.
    As for the translation of terms into Spanish, for example, we chose to avoid English loanwords according to the target culture, even though they are of common use in other languages.

B. Approach to information sources     

  1. trevisobellunosystem respects copyright and commits to informing users about sources. For this reason, we always quote the source at the beginning of articles not written by trevisobellunosystem staff: press office, website, publication and author's name.
  2. The editorial staff is always committed to ascertaining the veracity of information, in order to be a reliable, reputable source, thus respecting its institutional role.
  3. Relevant emails and websites are added to articles, to allow users to search for in-depth information also on other sources.
  4. trevisobellunosystem editorial staff sends a notice to the relevant subjects whenever their press releases are published and whether they will be sent via trevisobellunosystem Newsletter or English Newsletter as well, in order to facilitate press reviews and maintain an actual connection, thus strengthening collaboration.
  5. The editorial staff is constantly committed to searching for new information sources and issues of interest to registered users' needs.
  6. The editorial staff believes that getting in touch personally is fundamental to establish a relation between sources of information that allows interacting and building a relationship of trust, and consequently assure complete and truthful information to our users. This objective is pursued by the staff's personal participation to press conferences and meetings on issues relevant to the Website's activities.

C. Types of information we publish

  1. We publish news mainly derived from daily selection and content management activities, that is, our editorial staff manages information received – institutional releases, also from the network of Chambers of Commerce, news from local trade associations and the Italian Chambers of Commerce abroad –, as well as writing original contents – thanks to the participation in events and initiatives in the areas of Treviso province and Veneto region.
  2. We mainly focus on economic information, but we also place great importance on cultural issues: we endorse culture as a fundamental component for the growth of sensible citizenship, in which inhabitants are aware of the territory they live in, and of their role.
  3. We pay particular attention to communiqués referring to or interesting for children, the elderly or the disabled. We respect the Carta di Treviso (cf. footnote 1).
  4. The Website is intended to be an intermediary between information sources and users, aimed to provide summarised, more usable and profitable information.

D. Approach to local, national and European institutions

  1. The Website behaves as an intermediary between institutions in Treviso, the Veneto region and Europe and the Ministries, to disseminate information which can be useful to citizens' life and professional activities but is usually difficult to reach for final users.
  2. The editorial staff is committed to simplifying complex terminology in order to make information easy to understand.
  3. The Website is intended to be a knowledge sharing tool. It gives a voice to local institutions so as to provide a comprehensive overview and an effective knowledge sharing tool for free, also to the benefit of organisations in lack of a communication structure. Furthermore, it aims to create a network of institutions in which they might keep each other mutually informed.
  4. The Website is introduced to users as a kind of news aggregator collecting the activities and projects of different realities in the territory, as a new, shared communication tool for local trade associations: in this way, they in their turn can gather information on ongoing projects thus joining a territorial network. By doing that, we aim to support the territorial social capital.

E. Approach to human resources involved in the Website's management

With an eye to CSR, we focused on the trade-off betweenour resources' personal and professional life supporting them in completing their university studies and promoting transparent, effective ways of communicating between the project management and the resources.

Among the tools helping to reconcile personal and professional activities, Treviso Tecnologia allows flexible working, that is, flexibility in working hours.

F. Approach to companies and the community

  1. The Website is attentive to users' inquiries, to which we try to reply within a 48-hour time range. Whenever we are not able to deal with inquiries in due course, we guarantee to constantly inform users about the advancement of the process related to their specific request. (cf. section A point 3)
  2. 2. The Website is committed – with the aim of supporting activities carried out by the CSR and Environment Office of Treviso Chamber of Commerce – to disseminating information on CSR, publishing best practice processes by local companies and informing about recognitions (special mentions and prizes) received by them.    
    trevisobellunosystem new homepage comprises a section on CSR, a link to best practice processes as well as links to Treviso Chamber of Commerce and the CSR Office websites.
  3. Contact data published within the Website – i.e. addresses, links, emails – are periodically checked in order to keep providing reliable information and not causing business opportunities to be lost.

G. Approach to external users during the economic crisis and emergencies.

  1. On the occasion of emergencies due to natural disasters – for example, the 2009 earthquake in Abruzzo –, the editorial staff made help available to students and researchers in the area affected by publishing a release on the possibility to pose a question to speakers in conferences reported by trevisobellunosystem through our staff, so that they could be supported in their researches or dissertations.
  2. trevisobellunosystem published the communiqué by ENAC (the Italian Civil Aviation Authority) expressing their grief for the death of an engineer working at ENAC, caused by the earthquake in Abruzzo.
  3. During the economic crisis, the Website has been firmly committed to promoting the companies from Treviso area registered in the tbdotcom section, as well as fostering new registrations. It also strove to promptly disseminate releases, information and data which could be useful to entrepreneurs in their business activities.
  4. We thoughtfully, constantly deal with customer care activities in order to answer to all users' requests.

H. Welcome Marketing.

trevisobellunosystem Russian and Japanese versions are thought as promotion tools for our companies as well as useful tools for immigrants in Treviso who may wish to know more about the territory and its institutions, and are thus able to consult contents in their native language.

1.8. Conclusive remarks

The social responsibility charter constitutes an interesting opportunity to arrange the services offered and the way in which they are provided with a values approach.
It has been a complex challenge since technology development on the Website and its spin-offs kept going on at the same time, as well as new implementations: we strove to maintain fast working pace to support closely our companies affected by this difficult economic phase with prompt solutions.

The editorial staff activities were shaped according to the economic situation and proved to have a flexible structure that also fits new, faster working rhythms.

Therefore, this social responsibility charter constitutes a new tool to monitor the usefulness of the Website.

We commit to always respecting the stated principles and providing a constantly updated tool.  

We wish that this tool could be useful to users and transferred also to other editorial staffs.
trevisobellunosystem editorial staff wishes that the performed implementations and activities could satisfy the needs of this territory, from both the economic and social points of view.

Treviso, 1 December 2009

Silvia Trevisan
trevisobellunosystem Web content manager

2. Acknowledgements

trevisobellunosystem editorial staff would like to thank:
Mr Marco D'Eredità, Secretary General of Treviso Chamber of Commerce, for approving the publication of our Social Responsibility Charter.

Mr Roberto Santolamazza, managing director of Treviso Tecnologia, for following this project from a CSR point of view.

Mr Antonio Biasi and Ms Federica Alimede from the CSR Office of Treviso Chamber of Commerce, for kindly providing professional consulting.

Ms Valentina Montesarchio from Unioncamere Veneto, for suggesting relevant bibliography.

Mr Renato Chahinian, former Secretary General of Treviso Chamber of Commerce, for contributing on the subject of added value.

The companies with which we shared this path.