Corporate Social Responsibility

The Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) is committed to being a socially responsible organisation, proactively pursuing improvements to the social and environmental impacts of its business and associated supply chains.

SMMT seeks to achieve these aims through a defined CSR programme consisting of coordinated activities and where possible, commitments to recognised standards or codes of conduct. SMMT’s CSR objectives are based around five central themes: people; communities; Industry; supply chains and the environment. These objectives include commitments around SMMT corporate activity as well as facilitating responsible behaviour among SMMT’s wider membership.

SMMT has defined metrics to measure the impact and effectiveness of its chosen activities and is committed to continuous, year-on-year improvement.

We want to be a responsible business that meets the highest standards of ethics and professionalism. Our company’s corporate social responsibility falls under the following categories:

  • People
  • Community
  • Industry
  • Supply Chains
  • Environment

SMMT Charity Trust Fund

Established in 1932, the SMMT Charitable Trust Fund (Charity Number 209852) was set up to support people who were engaged in a position of responsibility in the motor trade, or who contributed to the encouragement, promotion or protection of the motor trade. Additionally, it also helps those who may have disadvantaged backgrounds who would like to enter the motor industry too – whether that be through education of young people or through transferring of skills from other industries.


  • Ben is a charity that aims to support people connected to the automotive industry, providing support for life for them and their family dependents. Ben supports individuals to navigate through life’s challenges, empowering them to make positive, lasting change. Ben works with people to improve their lives by enhancing their health and wellbeing through its free and confidential online self-help, helpline and support services. SMMT has supported Ben for many decades via grants, raising awareness and event donations.

    Ben supports those connected to the automotive industry, including businesses, and the SMMT Charitable Trust Fund (SCTF) funding has helped to increase the number of people they are able to help. The SCTF approved a further grant to fund the cost of Ben’s digital platform, Silvercloud, supporting Ben’s plans to deliver a fast-track access of services via the programme BenWell. The project far surpassed the number of people they aimed to support in 2021. SMMT membership department has also met with Ben and are working with them to help Ben to access more people.

  • In 2019 SMMT joined forces with the Royal Foundation of the now Prince and Princess of Wales and the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, and the Ministry of Defence, to launch Mission Automotive, a new charitable partnership that helps service leavers and veterans into jobs in the sector.

    Unveiled at the Royal Hospital Chelsea, and delivered by Mission Motorsport, the Forces’ Motorsport Charity, Mission Automotive distils the charity’s seven years’ experience in placing veterans into employment across the UK automotive industry.

    Since the first Invictus Games in 2014, Mission Motorsport partners, including Jaguar Land Rover, DHL, Westway Nissan, Alcon and Bicester Heritage, have already helped 1,700 veterans, including over 150 ex-servicemen and women categorised as wounded, injured or sick, into work.

    Mission Automotive maps military skills to qualifications required by the sector, delivering sustainable and relevant employment opportunities for service leavers, veterans and their partners. It also lets the industry tap into a pool of unrealised talent to fill skills gaps in everything from components, infrastructure and software through to manufacturing, logistics, maintenance and repair.

    As the move to electrification and related technology gains pace, the initiative will also provide a welcome boost as ex-forces personnel across all three services already possess highly relevant skills in high-voltage technologies and systems.

    On 10 February 2021 SMMT signed the Armed Forces Covenant, reaffirming the importance of recruitment and retention of veterans and service leavers for automotive industry. The pledge commits SMMT to promoting best practice, fostering a culture and ethos of inclusivity, and making the commercial case for automotive companies to also sign up to the Covenant.

  • The SCTF has provided IET bursaries to support seven students since 2019. The bursaries allow students an opportunity to purchase workbooks or equipment to develop their learning and development.

    Of the Future Talent Awards recipients: 40% are from an Asian Black and/or mixed ethnic background, 27% are women, 13% are over the age of 25 and 18% are disabled or have a long-term health condition.

  • Greenpower Project
    At the November 2021 meeting, it was approved that the grant awarded for 2020 could be carried over again into 2022 as the project was again unable to run due to the Coronavirus pandemic. Since the club reopened in September, they are able to accommodate more members and they plan to run a Greenpower project again to build the car in 2022 with a view to racing it in 2023. – Replace with text (Link to St Andrews)

    Toyota Working Assets Participation

    At the November 2021 meeting, it was approved that the grant awarded for 2020 could be carried over again into 2022. Toyota plan to commence the project in May 2022.

    IET Engineering Horizons Bursaries
    The SCTF are currently supporting a bursary for six students. One has now graduated, two are now in their final year and three in their first.

    SMMT Apprentice Support Programme The SCTF agreed to provide grants to contribute towards the cost of apprentice salaries for struggling SMMT SME Members. Total grant available of £100,000. The programme relaunched in Q4 2021 and one successful applicant was awarded a grant to support the cost of their apprentice for one year.

    Careers in the Automotive Industry

    The SCTF agreed to provide a grant to fund a publication – A Guide to Careers in the Automotive Industry in collaboration with the Worshipful Company of Coachmakers. The publication was launched in May 2022 and will be available on the SMMT website. To download the Automotive Industry Career Guide click here .

  • SMMT Nominated Charity

    SMMT’s nominated charity for 2022/23 is Depher. Depher provides urgent emergency works such as repairing gas leaks, installing new boilers and heating systems – and providing running hot water to those without it. So far SMMT group has raised over £1000

    Local Community Support – St Matthews Church
    A local church that SMMT has supported through donations.

    Women On the Move Against Cancer. A charity run by women in the automotive industry to raise funds for a nominated cancer charity. SMMT plan to make a donation of £2,000 in 2023.

    Local Community Support – The Passage
    A local homeless charity that SMMT supports by making donations in lieu of sending paper Christmas cards and gift vouchers to our pensioners.

    Investors in People
    IIP is a quality standard that assesses the way in which a company leads, supports and manages people well for the benefit of the organisation and its employees. The group project team continue to work on identified areas for improvement to strengthen the group’s status. A formal assessment took place in March 2022 the SMMT Group was awarded a Silver award. SMMT strives to attain the Gold award in 2023.

    ISO 14001 is an independently audited international environmental management standard. By the end of 2021 SMMT already reduced its CO2 linked to the office operation by 63% on the 2013 performance and it continues to progress in 2023. SMMT passed the ISO audit on 17 November 2022 and is looking at ways to step up its environmental performance and commit to a Science Based Target.

    SMMT Sustainability Report
    The 23rd edition of this longest running sectoral report was published on 11 July 2022. SMMT collate and summarise the sustainability and environmental initiatives and statistics of signatory member companies to promote the sustainability activities and achievement of the industries and to inspire improvements and socially responsible actions. Last year’s report highlights the industry’s net zero and Science Based Targets commitments to reduce its contribution to climate change. The next edition of the report will be published in Summer 2023.

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