Employee Engagement: Volunteering on rise

In recognition of National Volunteer Week taking place April 23-29, Benevity has shared the news that Spark, its market leading cloud solution for workplace giving, grantmaking and volunteering was used by enterprise clients to achieve record growth in volunteering, helping to drive employee engagement and skills development, while making a positive social impact in their local communities.

Corporates have triple digit volunteer hours

Together, Benevity clients continue to experience triple digit year-over-year increases in corporate volunteer hours as they leverage Spark’s easy-to-use, mobile-friendly volunteer sign-up, time tracking and rewards capabilities to give time and expertise to causes that matter to them.

Bryan de Lottinville, founder and CEO of Benevity, attributes the record growth to a shift in the way companies are designing their employee volunteer programs.

Volunteering must be flexible and inclusive

“We’re seeing more companies move away from traditional month-of-service programs with high barriers to entry towards a more inclusive, year-round volunteer experience for their people,” says de Lottinville. “Today’s corporate volunteer programs must be flexible enough to accommodate a broad spectrum of ages, abilities, interests, skill sets and lifestyles to help engage an increasingly diverse workforce. Companies are recognizing that democratized Goodness programs are powerful levers in creating a common sense of purpose, a compelling workplace culture and are an important vehicle for companies to contribute positively to their local communities. This is especially important as corporations look to attract, retain and engage today’s socially-conscious 21st century workforce, from boomers to millennials.”

Volunteering breeds other positive behaviors

Benevity also noted the positive correlation between volunteerism and other giving back behavior, with 70% of volunteers also donating money through workplace giving programs – almost double what non-volunteers give. This highlights the power of integrated strategies and intuitive software to support CSR and employee engagement leaders in meeting their goals. “We are helping our clients move away from a purely transactional focus for corporate and workplace giving programs to one that meets people (and companies) where they are and assists them along a spectrum of involvement that leads to broader co-creation and co-ownership of outcomes,” says de Lottinville. “There is tremendous business and social impact in a grassroots approach.”

Benevity client, Blue Shield of California, is a case in point. With a nonprofit, mission-driven health plan, Blue Shield saw significant growth in volunteering last year, noting it as a way to drive employee well-being and engagement.

“Creating a healthier California begins with creating an exceptional employee experience,” says Antoinette Terrana, Director of Corporate Citizenship at Blue Shield of California. “Since launching Spark at Blue Shield in 2014, we’ve partnered with Benevity to create flexibility and convenience in our program and significantly increase volunteer hours from 2015 to 2016 by 173 percent.”

Blue Shield of California enhanced their culture of volunteerism and giving back this past year through Spark’s highly configurable volunteer module, enabling them to create focused campaigns and more structured volunteer opportunities throughout the year. “Benevity’s easy-to-use and flexible software has helped us support our community involvement initiatives and enhance our employee experience,” continues Terrana. “And when our employees are actively involved in volunteerism, it leads to a deeper connection and commitment to advancing our company’s mission.”

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