By Michele Egan Sterne, Vice President, For Momentum
America’s Charities recently released Snapshot 2015, The New Corporate DNA: Where Employee Engagement and Social Impact Converge. This latest installment in their annual series produced some thoughtful commentary on the latest trends in employee engagement and corporate-nonprofit partnerships.
It’s worth reading the full report, which is jam-packed with stats on what small to mid-size companies are doing. The research also highlights some of the key differences from 2013 to 2015 for large companies. Companies of all sizes are positioning employee engagement as a key component of their integrated corporate social responsibility plans.
Because the landscape is evolving and changing at a rapid pace, Snapshot 2015 highlights the top five things companies can do to maximize social impact:
- Ensure that company leadership is authentic, and senior officers are actively engaged and involved.
- Align employee engagement strategies and nonprofit partnerships with business values and mission.
- Engage in a dialogue with key nonprofit partners to ensure engagement is strategic and mutually beneficial.
- Involve and empower employees to support corporate signature programs AND the causes they care about.
- Identify opportunities to ensure you use your programs to recruit and retain the best talent by connecting employee engagement to professional development and recruitment strategies.
As advocates for a fully engaged workforce and mutually beneficial corporate-nonprofit partnerships, America’s Charities encourages employers and nonprofits to think more strategically and creatively about how to strengthen and transform their collective efforts.
Clearly, many large companies have their own signature corporate cause programs, but as a big believer in the power of corporate-nonprofit partnerships, I was encouraged to see that 90 percent of the participating companies believe that “partnering with a reputable NPO enhances their brand.” On the flip side, nonprofits should note that 66 percent of companies have “higher expectations of nonprofit partners as it related to accountability.” This echoes what we learned in For Momentum’s 2015 Corporate Partner Survey—demonstrating impact is critical.
Another overarching theme from Snapshot 2015 is that tremendous opportunity exists for small to mid-size companies (defined as those businesses with less than 5,000 employees) to use effective volunteer and workplace giving programs as a competitive edge when it comes to recruiting and retaining top talent. Due to several dynamics including expectations of younger/millennial employees and technologies that promote a peer-to-peer engaged global world, rapid refinements are taking place. Large companies report they feel the need to reevaluate their employee volunteer and workplace engagement plans often. Paving the way for savvy small and mid-size companies to benefit from their best practices. America’s Charities shared the infographic below during a Snapshot 2015 “Best Practices for Workplace Giving” webinar.