Giving Back

Supporting your employees' values with options that let them give back to their community and the world.

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Companies today are incorporating and enhancing giving back programs more than ever before. And the programs have become increasingly important to both current and potential customers and employees. As this happens, organizations are understanding the significance of making sure their programs are well communicated.

What does it mean for a company to give back?

Giving back means donating time, resources and money to charitable causes. We’re seeing companies expand their giving back programs to include:

  • Offering employees paid time off to volunteer.
  • Matching employee charitable contributions.
  • Donating a percent of profits to a good cause.

To be most effective, corporate giving policies and practices need to mesh with the company’s culture and be communicated widely so everyone knows about them — and can participate.

Why is giving back important?

There are many benefits to a company giving back. It can build customer brand loyalty, assist in recruiting and improve employee engagement — all which can positively affect the bottom line. If giving back is truly engrained in a company’s culture, it can change the fabric of the organization and transform its image.

To that point, Entrepreneur.com talks about the effect corporate charitable giving can have on a company’s culture and its financial results. The article states that for starters, it just feels good to make a positive difference and that positivity trickles down through employees. And according to the article, companies that regularly participate in philanthropic causes report happier employees. Which make for more productive employees (13% more productive to be exact), and, overall, a more productive and successful business.

Importantly, a company’s giving back program can be a strong consideration for employees deciding where to work. More employees are checking a company’s social responsibility program and reputation before signing on. Among millennials, charitable giving programs are even more important than with other age groups.

The Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) article “Employees Look to Workplace Programs to Ease Charitable Giving” has more details.

And while companies benefit internally from strong giving back programs, clients and customers are also more inclined to support an organization that demonstrates generous giving.

Forbes suggest that shoppers prefer to buy from charitable companies because it makes them feel good. They know they’re part of something bigger than themselves and their purchase is changing the world. In fact, it says shoppers younger than age 40 prefer to shop at places that give back instead of them donating directly. And just over ¾ of millennials prefer to support brands with corporate citizenship.

What can companies do?

First, a company’s giving back policies and procedures need to be established. This is often a multiple-step process and it’s helpful to involve employees at all levels and demographics. It’s good to be sure giving back policies support other company principles. Systems to track and evaluate participation and program effectiveness are critical.

However, the process doesn’t end there. Properly communicating policies and actions can make all the difference. Effective communication will help ensure the policies are known, accepted and incorporated into employees’ work life. Good communication also ensures that current and potential customers know how a company is giving back.

How to effectively communicate your charitable programs

It’s important to understand that communicating about your company’s giving back program isn’t bragging. Everyone likes to hear stories about helping others. Such stories are inspiring. Hearing about good deeds often prompts more kind acts. Getting the word out will help your organization be more effective in its giving back programs. It will also enable more good work to be done through broader participation. Everyone likes to help others, and an active giving back program can improve employee engagement. Employees feel better about the company they work for and their jobs when they are able to help others. Customers increasingly want to do business with companies that give back. So communicating your programs can be critical to your companies’ profits.

Where to start

Start by assuring employees that the giving back program is supported by top management. Keep in mind that personalizing giving back messaging brings stories to life. Establishing a brand can help employees quickly identify messaging. Including tracking systems will help measure success and show areas where further attention is needed. Recognizing efforts that are well done will pave the way for more success. Evaluating programs on a regular basis and making changes when necessary help keep the programs effective. Programs need an occasional refresh to keep them from getting stale and to keep interest levels high.

Communicate creatively

PartnerComm creates custom, distinct communication to make sure your giving program gets the right attention — inspiring all who see it.

Reach out to an expert today.