Chamber Awards 2019 Winners Q&A – South Dublin Chamber
Following the 2019 Chamber Awards, Leona Murphy from Chambers Ireland caught up with South Dublin Chamber who won the Local Authority Collaboration award category, for their project Sustainable Business Partnership Programme with South Dublin County Council, South Dublin LEO and South Dublin Chamber
Could you tell us a bit about your winning project/initiative?
In 2011, South Dublin Chamber and South Dublin County Council came together as partners to form the Sustainable Business Programme. The aim of this programme is to empower businesses to consider the sustainability and long- term future of their business. This partnership has a strong focus on job creation at the local level achieved through strengthening local businesses engaging with the programme. This positive response to supporting business development and job creation in the local community is driven through the power of collaboration by the partners involved.
The Business Sustainability Programme is the only programme of its kind in Ireland or the UK it is therefore unique and innovative. The program is innovative as it provides a mechanism to allow for the coming together of local government and private business to work closely in a partnership model for the benefit of the local economy and it created new ways of working that allowed for synergies to be formed that offered every business a better support service.
What does winning this award mean to your Chamber?
This award means a lot to our Chamber and it recognises our partnership work with South Dublin County Council that has been a consistent success over a number of years . The award also validates the benefits from collaborating with South Dublin County Council which will continue to assist many more businesses in the County.
What inspired your Chamber to start this project/initiative?
The Sustainable Business Programme was initiated in 2011 following identification of a gap in support for local businesses (SMEs and larger corporates included) at local and national level.
At that time Ireland was in the depths of a recession which was impacting on all businesses both nationally and internationally. Although at the time there were a variety of supports available for business through local and national government initiative, the range and access to these supports was complex to navigate for most businesses, particularly when they may have lost staff and as such manpower and availability to engage.
What are the next steps with this project/initiative?
The core work of the Sustainable Business Programme is to provide a wide range of services and resources to local business in an easily accessible format, as well as feeding back information from these businesses to inform local and national economic development policy. We will continue to be proactive, listening to businesses and working with them to clarify the issue and help them to address the issue.
What exciting projects does your Chamber have planned for the rest of 2019 and into 2020?
We are launching a new website with Chamber Master CRM which will provide a more comprehensive online service to our members. Our new advanced training programme will also be launched this year where we will be working with business in the area to deepen the skills of the local workforce, building on the success of our training programme with LEO South Dublin County. In 2020 we look forward to the full implementation of our County Marketing programme which is to encourage and support FDI and Irish businesses to locate in our part of Dublin, South Dublin County.