Founded in 1990 as an independent legal entity, the Cummins India Foundation (CIF) channelizes Cummins' commitment towards one of its six core values of Corporate Responsibility. All its initiatives, both in the local community and in other parts of India where Cummins operates, fall under the three key focus areas of Higher Education, Energy and Environment, and Local Community Infrastructure Development.
While the various projects undertaken under each of these key focus areas receive financial support from the Foundation, Cummins is also committed to the active involvement and participation of its employees in its corporate responsibility initiatives.
As a mandate, under the Every Employee Every Community initiative (EEEC), every employee is encouraged to dedicate a minimum of four working hours towards any of the projects undertaken under these three focus areas.
Cummins India Foundation is spearheaded by the Managing Director of the Cummins Group in India, Anant J. Talaulicar. Assisting him is the Steering Committee which comprises of senior leaders of the management team as the Board of Trustees.
The Foundation works closely with civic bodies, NGOs, Government and the communities in achieving the organization's vision of "Making people's lives better by unleashing the Power of Cummins" with the following goals:
- To create sustainable wealth for all our stakeholders - both within and outside Cummins
- To motivate and empower our employees to be engaged in improving the communities in order to make them better places to live and work
- To create an atmosphere of trust and collaboration by partnering with our stakeholders to drive improvement
- To identify global priorities that apply across communities and use the global reach of Cummins to leverage our efforts in these areas
Corporate Responsibility at Cummins
It is easy to see how corporate citizenship can be a natural extension of the Cummins personality. For a brand that stands by the value of Dependability, Cummins recognizes the symbiotic relationship between the various stakeholders. The long term benefits of such an association, clearly overpowers the absence of tangible results in the short term. And so, it is not so much a question of what Cummins chooses to do in the sphere of Corporate Responsibility, but how.
With the goal of creating sustainable wealth for all stakeholders - internal and external - Cummins articulates its perspective on Corporate Responsibility as follows:
- To evaluate the impact of our business decisions and practices on all of the stakeholders and recognizing our responsibility to each one.
- Practice highest standards of corporate citizenship by always acting ethically and with integrity, and pursuing and applying 'best practices' to create a cleaner, safer and healthier environment.
- To achieve success by demonstrating our values, and utilizing our talents and resources to drive improvement in the communities in which we operate, as also the larger world.
As is evident, at Cummins, the commitment to Corporate Responsibility is not just a practice, but essentially the very way of how business must be conducted. Corporate Responsibility for Cummins, is not philanthropy- it is a far-reaching, engaging and participative model. The human capital required for the work done, is not seen as a one-time activity. Cummins identifies and motivates employees who demonstrate an alignment to the larger cause. Needless to say, just as Corporate Responsibility is ingrained in Cummins' culture, similarly volunteering comes naturally to the inspired employees.
At Cummins, Corporate Responsibility relies on an endless loop of symbiotic association between the employees, organization and the community at large. Encouraging and empowering employees to explore their compassion towards the communities, Cummins Corporate Responsibility fosters sustainable coalitions with stakeholders. This collaboration lays the foundation of intense efforts at the grass-root level, whose results speak for themselves.
The Corporate Responsibility team looks to the organization for a direction to channelize the raw energy and positive synergies that its cross-functional team brings. Cummins has identified three areas of focus that provide the best platform for itself and its employees to add value.
The importance of Education, can never be understated. While we rigorously recruit from the top institutes of the nation, we cannot turn a blind eye to the multifaceted needs of the education sector in India. At Cummins, the focus is to provide better opportunities for Higher Education, such that enhance the employability of the youth. From inadequate and poor quality of education at some institutes, to battling illiteracy in the lowest rungs of society; from making education economically accessible to enhancing the vocational and professional quotient of training institutes, the scope for Cummins to contribute its intellectual property, is aplenty.
Energy and Environment
Every organization, large and small, is responsible towards the environment. Sustainable growth for Cummins is one that does not compromise on the environmental impact of its business. Needless to say, it is our mission to remain environmentally-sustainable.
Cummins takes a simple yet powerful route for its efforts towards the environment to include activities such as sapling plantations, cleaning of water bodies and campaigning for public awareness, towards a cleaner and healthier society.
Extending its initiative to sustainable energy, Cummins applies its know-how and expertise to take an inventive approach to rural electrification. The Corporate Responsibility projects in this sphere are not about providing electricity once, but forever. Sustainable models built using locally available resources provide solutions that have even helped generate revenues, thus working towards giving power to 'all'.
Social Justice and Infrastructure
While taking care of the infrastructural needs of those on whose land stands the facilities of Cummins, this sphere of social participation identifies infrastructure gaps in the localities around the plant, and going beyond the legal obligations towards the 'project affected people'. Cummins believes in uplifting the infrastructure by means of grass-root level participation such as rural development encompassing a gamut of developmental activities starting from providing water to schools, improving living conditions within homes and pro-actively planning for irrigation needs during summers, etc.
While a holistic view gives a sense of the organizational perspective, each project by itself, is an individual tale of teamwork and triumph.
Alongside being a testimony of collaborative success, each initiative is a sustainable and replicable model- capable of creating a ripple of empowerment that spreads to positively influence the environment in the organization and the community.