Part 2 of our 4-Part Series: Workplace Giving and Crowdfunding
Part 2. Workplace giving raises $5 Billion a year for charity. Yet sadly, that falls way short of the potential. In this four-part series, I am taking a deep dive into workplace giving. The numbers. The opportunities. What do nonprofits need to know, as well as companies? Most importantly, I’m going to explain whycrowdfunding is the solution to fulfilling workplace donor expectations and revitalizing workplace giving. And I’ll explain how we can do it.
In Part 1, we looked at the current problems facing charitable giving, and how little workplace giving contributes to total annual giving in the US. Now in Part 2, we examine today’s donor expectations, especially workplace donor expectations.
What today’s workplace donors expect
Okay, so charitable giving – including workplace giving – has problems. Must we leave workplace giving in its current state? No! We can choose to move forward. In fact, a clear path is already emerging.
Young people are showing us the way, but are we paying attention? Do we understand the behavior? More importantly, do we grasp the opportunity that crowdfunding at the workplace offers us? It offers every business of every size, the ability to include all employees no matter where they are located, and to support any charity or cause anywhere.
Let’s face it: workplace giving of the past never really engaged small and mid-sized businesses effectively. It was simply too hard. Too many paper forms to distribute. Small business doesn’t have time to process payroll deduction payments. It’s as if workplace donor expectations were an afterthought.
Then as enterprise software was designed, it was designed for the enterprise company. Complex workflows and big databases translate into what? You guessed it – into multi-year contracts, long implementation processes and five and six figure annual fees. All that just to give.
A clear path is emerging: crowdfunding at the workplace offers a way for businesses of every size to engage with employees, customers, and partners, no matter where they are located. See how Givio does it.
Today’s workplace is so different. And so workplace giving must become different. Because the expectations of today’s workers are really different.
Today’s workforce is:
Conscientious of employer actions.
Roughly 75% of today’s workforce represents Gen X, Millennials and Gen Z. Do they want to give? You bet they do. They are so conscious of social good causes that every major brand in the world is trying to demonstrate their Corporate Social Responsibility creds in order to attract and retain customers. As Cone put it in 2017 – and it is still true – consumers want brands that share their values. And today’s consumer expectations are also today’s workplace donor expectations.
Where are today’s employee-donors?
For starters, they are not sitting behind a desk in an office, waiting to give by payroll deduction, logging into enterprise computer software systems through a company intranet. And let’s not forget: Gen Z and Millennials also don’t use checks, may not use credit cards all that much, and they are tired of email. Are we paying attention to the cues?
Today’s employee-donors expect a giving experience on their own terms – mobile, simple, social sharable.
Here are some numbers that should get your attention:
88% of Millennials find their job more fulfilling when they have opportunities to make a positive impact on society and the environment
81% of all Americans own at least 1 smart phone
90M Americans use mobile pay apps
50M Americans have donated to a crowdfunding campaign to help someone with medical bills
Young people in particular are responding to peer-to-peer and crowdfunding opportunities. But much of this giving is directed away from the nonprofit sector. If we are going to rebuild a shrinking nonprofit donor base, then we have to engage not simply more donors, but younger donors. And companies can lead the effort. How? By rolling out an enterprise giving platform that automates payroll deduction giving, so that 12% of employees participate? Is that really what we consider to be CSR innovation?
Ready to engage
How about we start by engaging with employees on their terms? Then maybe we think about suppliers, customers and partners? Enable employees to create, share and promote giving campaigns for the causes closest to them in our communities.
What was your company’s corporate matching budget last year? Double it – it’s still a fraction of your profitability.
Remember that stat from Part 1 about billions in matching gift dollars going unused by employees? Is your corporate giving program a maze of rules that employees won’t take the time to read? Change that – please! Empower giving from the ground up.
To our nonprofit and United Way friends, get creative with your corporate engagement strategies. It doesn’t take as much effort as you think to attract new corporate partners. But you’ve got to make it effortless. Remove the barriers. We will talk about workplace giving engagement strategies in Part 3.
The nonprofit enterprise software industry, by the way, is already responding to these trends. Really? … How? Companies like Salsa, Classy, and DonorPerfect are building crowdfunding tools into their enterprise platforms. That’s progress.
But will enterprise software meet the needs of tens of thousands of small businesses – and their millions of employees – when it comes to workplace giving? I doubt it. Because it is still enterprise software. Better solutions are needed. Simple, actionable plans are a must. And that’s where turn our attention next: new, mobile, highly sharable giving platforms – like Givio – that offer actionable solutions.