Boosting employee engagement through non-profit giving

Posted in: Insights

It’s official. Employee engagement in the UK has reached an all-time low. Only 9% of UK workers say they’re happy with their workplaces (according to Gallup’s just-released State of the Global Workplace 2022 Report).

The Great Resignation is underway and people are leaving their companies in droves in search of greener pastures. 20% of people in the UK plan to leave their jobs in the next twelve months.

Can you imagine losing one-fifth of the people in your company this year? We sure can’t.

It’s time to rally around employees and put a plan into action that will help retain our talent. At ActionFunder, we work with businesses that want to boost employee engagement and we’ve learnt a thing or two that can help.

Purpose is key to engaging employees

There are a few factors driving the Great Resignation. One that comes up in a lot of our conversations is that people are actively seeking a greater sense of purpose in their lives and careers. When companies help employees feel a sense of purpose, we see increased engagement and retention.

Almost 90% of employees want their companies to double down on purpose. 75% said their companies need to behave in ways more aligned with their purpose. And 38% specifically want their employers to make bigger commitments to societal issues. (Thanks to the Purpose Under Pressure study for these great stats!)

Non-profit giving: a connection point to purpose

Connecting employees to purpose is less about fancy vision statements and lofty values (although that messaging is important). People want to see their companies take real and meaningful steps to make a difference in the world at large.

Qualtrics’s Power of Purpose study found that 68% of UK employees believe their companies should invest in charity initiatives, and 59% say they’ll be more engaged if this happens.

Charitable giving connects all stakeholders, from contractors to customers to purpose. Most importantly – in the face of the continued Great Resignation – it connects employees.
Funding non-profits is a proven way to:

  • Make the company’s purpose tangible
  • Put vision and mission statements into action
  • Show the company really does value people as highly as profit
  • Create real community impact

Best practices for charitable giving programmes

From talking with hundreds of business and non-profit leaders, we’ve put together a few tips to help you get the most impact out of your non-profit giving programme.

1. Choose local nonprofits aligned with your purpose

Giving programmes make purpose tangible when they’re targeted to causes that are aligned with your business values and purpose.

Take Greene King for instance. With 2,700 pubs in towns, villages, and cities across England, Wales, and Scotland, they’re deeply embedded in local communities. The brand is actively focused on being a good neighbour and creating opportunities through innovative social programmes.

To bring their purpose to life, Greene King launched Proud to Pitch In and pledged up to £500,000 to fund grassroots sports across the UK. Check out the work they did with Bradford City DFC, a community group that brings football, fans, fun, future, and family to adults with disabilities in Bradford.

2. Make it fun and interactive

The Qualtrics study we mentioned above also reports that 56% of employees say it’s important or very important to them to be asked for their opinions about their companies’ CSR activities.

Make sure you get the whole team involved. One way to do this is by running judging panels with your colleagues to choose which projects to fund.

3. Capture real stories

Once you fund a campaign, ask the non-profit to share stories, photos, and videos about the people they’re helping. These kinds of updates make employees feel connected to the cause, campaign, and community. The Greene King campaign we just mentioned has funded more than 50 projects so far and captured stories about each one.

4. Measure and share the impact

It’s equally important to capture data that proves the impact of your donations. 53% of employees say they’re energized by knowing about their company’s impact. Plus, when you can tie your funds to measurable outcomes, it will be easier to get approval to fund future campaigns.

5. Keep giving

This brings us to our last tip–keep giving! Your effort can’t be one and done. Think about building long-term partnerships with your non-profit partners and supporting their work in other ways. Over time, you may consider offering pro-bono services or co-hosting volunteer days.

How to make non-profit giving easy

If you’re eager to make a difference for your employees and your communities, have a look at ActionFunder. Our platform makes it quick and easy to find, fund, and follow the impact of local non-profits aligned with your company’s purpose.

Businesses use it to:

  • Find hyper-targeted local non-profits focused on specific causes
  • Create interactive experiences that let their teams decide which non-profits to support
  • Track real-time progress of their funds and get real stories from non-profits
  • Get impact reports that they can share in internal and external communications
  • Make non-profit giving part of their companies’ cultures

You can get started by creating a profile for your business here. You’ll get matched with local non-profits for free and can start funding their works in no time.