'Tis the Season for Workplace Giving
By Sarah Ford on November 24, 2014
By Ryan Scott
The holidays are here, and that means that seasonal giving campaigns are cranking into high gear. Before you know it we’ll be bombarded with holiday viral campaigns like Office Depot’s popular time-killer, Elf Yourself, and opening earth-conscious holiday e-cards from companies instead of the snail mail kind. Since an increasing percentage of shoppers use mobile platforms to do their holiday shopping, our cell phones will be hit with seasonal promotions that benefit charities, like the ones that Starbucks SBUX +0.39% did for The Global Fund to help fight AIDS in Africa. It’s that time of year when most philanthropic giving transpires, so now is when companies are pulling out all of the stops to grab the attention and charitable dollars of their customers.
But one of the best ways that companies can give back is by giving their employees the opportunity to do so. Not only are workplace giving campaigns efficient tools for fundraising, they’re also effective at increasing employee engagement.
Each year, employees raise an astonishing $4.8 billion for nonprofits through workplace giving programs, according to Charity Navigator. And a recent study by America’s Charities revealed that 68% of employers report that their employees expect them to support volunteerism and 50% of employers are moving to year-round engagement with their workplace giving programs. Eighty percent of surveyed companies offer employees the ability to contribute to nonprofits via automatic payroll deductions, 70% offer matching gifts as a component of their volunteering and giving program, and 60% percent are incorporating contests and events as a way to add fun to workplace giving programs and keep them vibrant.
The study definitively showed that one of the benefits which employees now expect from their companies is an effective, contemporary workplace giving program. So if your company doesn’t yet offer a giving program, the holidays are an excellent time to start. And if you do have an existing workplace giving program, the holidays are the best time to really let it shine.