Today’s employees want to support causes they believe in—and hands-on volunteering is their preferred method. Worthy nonprofits benefit from this infusion of skilled volunteers creating a synergy of value.
Over 50% of American companies now provide skills-based-volunteering to their employees. A recent survey by Taproot of twenty-five companies with active pro bono programs, including fourteen Fortune 500 corporations, revealed that 84% plan to increase the scale of their program.
However, the nonprofits, foundations, corporations, and other participants face the ongoing challenge of sharing their success stories and engaging participants.
Knowing these facts will help you create awareness and interest in this innovative service opportunity, which can drive employee engagement while strengthening your social impact.
Growing Evidence Supports the Value of Skills-based Volunteering to Corporations
To gain support at the corporate level, thoughtful leaders want to know the projected return on investing time and resources in a robust pro bono program.
When employees see their companies genuinely supporting important social causes, they become committed ambassadors to corporate identity.
Review these additional advantages of skills-based volunteering:
Sustainable social impact
Both consumers and employees consider the corporate social impact when deciding where to work and shop. For example, seventy percent of shoppers want to know what brands are doing to address social and environmental problems.
Employee recruitment and retention
Millennials now comprise half of the United States workforce. Seventy-six percent consider a company’s social and environmental policies when choosing where to work and these loyal employees stay.
Leadership and skill development
We now consider the opportunity to learn among the top-rated essentials to 86% of job seekers. Skills-based volunteering expands leadership development and ignites passionate commitment.
Increased employee engagement
Eighty-eight percent of millennial-aged workers say their job is more fulfilling when they can make a positive impact on issues. This generation wants hands-on involvement.
Improved brand perception
Skills-based volunteering shows corporate responsibility. Ninety percent of consumers say they expect a company to have positive impacts on social and environmental causes.
Few projects integrate these components while benefiting local and even global nonprofit organizations as clearly as a skills-based volunteering program.
Skills-based Volunteering Can Help Nonprofits Accomplish Their Goals
Nonprofits are pressured to keep overhead low and use the funding to move their mission forward. Nonprofits allocate only 2% of their budget on overhead and staffing while for-profit corporations spend an average of 35%. This deficit results in a struggle to meet critical infrastructure and staffing requirements.
Nonprofits report significant staff shortages
A recent survey measured the shortages as 21.2% in technology, 19.1% in branding and marketing, as well as additional needs in accounting, HR, program operations and analysis, and public relations.
Pro bono experts can help fill the need for expert assistance
Stretching the budget with trained professionals can allow organizations to fulfill their goals or expand their mission. Financial shortfalls are a consistent challenge to the valuable work you are accomplishing, and skills-based volunteering can make a real difference.
Expand public awareness of your organization
Gain an opportunity to share their cause with interested volunteers and demonstrate the public commitment to your mission. For instance, millennials are adept and eager to share what they are doing on social media to benefit the nonprofit.
Many organizations find those pro bono professionals can help meet the need for functional experts.
Skills-based volunteers create meaningful solutions for the social sector and business communities, yet there are challenges to successful growth.
Companies Must Craft Effective Communication
Let’s imagine you have inspired the leadership in your organization, completed feasibility studies, and decided on the projects to be accomplished. Now what?
It takes strong leadership with a compelling vision to get the program moving forward. Your organization needs to devote time and resources to engage people and sustain this valuable collaboration and create successful partnerships.
Our experience shows that time spent establishing an effective communication strategy will maximize the results of your program:
Your goal is to inform, engage, and inspire both your staff and the potential pro bono volunteers. It’s essential to understand the people you want to reach and the emotions that resonate with them.
Create a strong foundation to target your key audience. Consider engaging expert help to develop an integrated strategy of visually appealing assets, including brochures, reports, and digital content, to convey the impact of your nonprofit’s work.
Understand the power of coworkers and peers to influence the participation that will keep your program vibrant. A report from Millennial Impact states that 75% of millennial employees prefer to volunteer with a group of peers, and 65% are more likely to take part if their coworkers do.
Corporations should choose causes that match the company’s mission and values and provide volunteer opportunities to match employees’ skills and interests.
Successful collaboration occurs when we consider everyone’s goals and motivations. Clarifying project expectations, involving all the stakeholders, and promoting clear communication, will ensure truly satisfying results can occur.
If you are not sure of the next steps to implement or broaden the skills-based volunteering program at your organization, we can help:
Maintain a quality experience as your program expands.
Recruit, engage and keep your volunteer employees in the program.
Mitigate time commitment from your HR department personnel while implementing and scaling the program.
Match your nonprofit partners who are eager to benefit from your best pro bono expert volunteer employees.
Provide data to share the success of your skill-based volunteering program.
Revere Software connects companies with worthwhile organizations that will benefit from the skills and talents of expert volunteers. We work with nonprofits to identify their needs and define projects, and partner with companies to recruit skilled volunteers and match them to the right projects.
Our vision is to make it easier for companies and individuals to leverage their collective skills and maximize social impact. Contact us for a demonstration to see how together we can create lasting solutions to humanity’s needs.