The Giving Australia 2016 government report released in December 2016 highlights a strong demand for unified giving as well as innovative technology solutions that strengthen workplace giving and volunteering programs. This comes as no surprise to Ash Rosshandler, GoodCompany CEO, who regularly speaks to companies about how to empower staff to give in a way that’s both easy and personally meaningful.
“This report again proves that businesses increasingly want to give back to the community. They want to support their staff to donate money – be it through workplace giving or fundraising. And they want to give people the opportunity to volunteer, on company time, to help charities succeed. We help them do all of this seamlessly in the one platform.” said Rosshandler.
Giving Australia reports that, compared to 10 years ago, more people are volunteering more hours. Rosshandler has noticed this trend amongst GoodCompany partners. “Professional volunteering let’s employees flex their skills at a charity of their choice, while benefiting the brand of their employer. General volunteering has proven health and wellbeing benefits, fosters teamwork and creates a sense of shared purpose amongst participants, who take their learnings back to the office.” he said.
“I’ve heard volunteers recount how, once back in the office, their experiences have motivated courageous conversations and reinforced the cultivation of empathy. The benefits to businesses as well as charities cannot be overstated.”
The challenge is that finding business volunteering roles is very time consuming, as anyone who’s ever attempted to coordinate charity needs, volunteer calendars and business needs will confirm.
“The immense GoodCompany database of skilled and general volunteering roles for both teams and individuals makes volunteering easy. Team members can even set up alerts to request volunteer roles that match their skills and expertise be emailed to them.” explains Ash.
In a critical finding, the report shows that 8 in 10 volunteers donate and when they do they give twice as much as regular donors, donating on average $1017.11 a year compared to non-volunteers who donate an average of $536.69 a year.
“This could be the tip of the iceberg” says Ash. “Imagine if companies harnessed the generosity of their volunteers and encouraged both volunteering and donating through their giving program. It could provide critical new revenue streams that are the lifeblood of charities.”
The business case for investing in a unified giving platform is strengthening, with many organisations wanting to run more impactful giving programs that let their staff give how they want, to charities they care about, in the one place. Rosshandler predicts that this shift will only increase as millennials make up a greater percentage of the workforce, and consequently, attracting them becomes more strategic.
“Millennials are the most socially conscious generation yet. They have increasingly high expectations of their employers to support them to give back to charities that they care about. They want to work for a business that cares about more than just their patch, and they want to do good for the world while they’re at their job.” As millennials will be half of the workforce within the next decade, technology platforms that unify giving will be even more sought after.
In the report, businesses acknowledge the organisational benefits of giving, while concluding that “irrespective of business returns” the top reason for giving is purely because it’s a good thing to do.
Rosshandler explains that GoodCompany delivers a strong community and commercial return-on-investment. “It’s the right ethical choice, and makes good business sense, to give back. GoodCompany is the perfect technology platform as it makes giving easy, meaningful and measurable. It is the ultimate solution for companies wanting to harness the goodness in their people.”