"We have reached some kind of tipping point in terms of awareness, understanding, and measurement," says Chris White, author of the Social Value Act that came into effect in England and Wales in 2012.
The act requires public sector commissioners to consider how procurement decisions could improve the economy, social, and environmental well-being of a specific area.
Since January 2021, every central government department must "explicitly evaluate social value when procuring services, not just 'consider' it," reports the Pioneer.
Social enterprises see it as an opportunity to win more public sector contracts, as well as a push towards encouraging the wider business community to act more ethically.
"If there are any naysayers, their days are over," says Darren Knowd, chair of the National Social Value Taskforce.
"This little act, I think it's transformed the relationship between the public and private sector," says Guy Battle, CEO of the Social Value Portal.
"It's impossible for businesses to win work unless it has a social value offer."
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