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Version 5 of the B Impact Assessment coming January 2016

B Lab is excited to announce that the next version of the B Impact Assessment, Version 5, is scheduled for launch in January of 2016.  Every two years, B Lab works with B Impact Assessment users, stakeholders, and B Lab’s Standards Advisory Council to release an updated version of the assessment to continually improve how it measures impact.

In this assessment update cycle, B Lab has narrowed its content changes to focus on indicators in the assessment that are missing or broken in an effort to create more continuity between versions.  Version 6, scheduled for launch in 2018, will involve a more comprehensive methodological review of the BIA and its scoring.  

For any assessment version, B Lab collects feedback on areas where the assessment can be improved, which, since the release of Version 4 in January of 2014, has provided over 3,000 individual pieces of feedback for updates.  B Lab is then able to create a revised draft of the B Impact Assessment for initial review and testing, including reviews by the Standards Advisory Council, private beta testing for B Corps and GIIRS Rated Funds and Companies, and a public comment period.      

The private beta begins on August 24th and will go until September 23rd.  Following the beta test, the draft will be revised and made available for public comment for a 30 day time period starting in the month of October.  A final draft will then be approved by the Standards Advisory Council, with an anticipated formal launch of January 2016.   

Several notable changes proposed for Version 5 include: 

• Improved employee best practices applicable for global developed markets
• Expanded Health Impact Business Model to more accurately differentiate the significance of health issues being addressed and different types of solutions
• Updated Supply Chain Impact Business Model to accommodate different fair trade standards and direct trade practices
• Greater acknowledgement of companies that have home or virtual offices
• Re-classification of service companies with significant operational impacts, such as construction, hospitality companies, etc., in order to recognize materiality of their environmental impact.
• Recognition of Sharing Economy business models that can verify reductions in consumption 
• Best practices for interns programs and use of independent contractors

Certified B Corps, GIIRS Rated Funds, and GIIRS Rated Companies have received private access via e-mail to participate in the beta testing process.  Updates will be provided when the assessment is available for public comment.  

The B Impact Assessment is developed and managed by B Lab with oversight from an independent Standards Advisory Council composed of stakeholder representatives and impact experts.  The Standards Advisory Council oversees and approves all content in the assessment and adjudicates any rebuttals regarding interpretation of the assessment.  Click here to view the current members of the Standards Advisory Council.  

For any questions or comments about the process, reach out to dosusky@bcorporation.net.

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