Most people want to work for companies that give back to society in some manner, but millennials (who will make up 75% of the workplace by 2025) are the generation that will say that this matters to them most, according to a survey conducted for Fortune magazine. Not only does giving satisfy the desire to be of service, but days of service can bring employees together and provide a bigger sense of purpose.
Since giving can be so powerful, it’s important to include it in your business plan for the upcoming year. Each year, approximately $5 billion is raised through workplace giving, and there are many ways to include this in your business plan, such as:
Payroll deductions are when donations are taken out of employees’ paychecks. People appreciate being able to choose their specific charity and then not have to worry about donating throughout the year because they will already be donating on a regular basis. It is a fairly painless process because donations are spread throughout the year.
However, your employees should be aware that their deductions are not taken pre-tax (like some retirement accounts or flexible spending accounts). Donations are tax-deductible at the end of the year and will require a pledge card with the name of the charity plus either a W-2, pay stub, or another document providing proof from your company.
As a company, part of your business plan may be to match employee contributions. This helps the charities and gives employees more of a feeling that their generosity is having an effect. Charities appreciate payroll deductions because it lowers their fundraising costs and allows them to plan ahead because they know exactly how much revenue they can count on regularly.
Planned Giving Days
Often, non-profit organizations or charities focus on one 24 hour period towards the end of the year for their fundraising efforts. In fact, 28% of nonprofits raise between 26-50% of their annual funds from their year-end ask or appeal. Your company can plan a giving day as part of your business plan. For example, Giving Tuesday, which began in 2012 and is the largest global day of giving, is the Tuesday after Thanksgiving. It was established as a day to encourage people to do good. In the official site’s toolkit for small businesses, they make suggestions such as:
- Launch a fund where others can help your employees and their families.
- Raise money for a cause that you and your employees are passionate about.
- Collect goods for a specific non-profit and coordinate with them.
- Have employees check on those who are alone, elderly, or who may need help with errands or a friendly call.
- Use your social platforms to encourage others to share kindness and be generous.
Day (or Days) of Service
Depending on the personality, size, and mission statement of your company, you can plan a day of service (or two). This is an opportunity for employees (and maybe even their families) to join together to volunteer in their community.
- Your company may plan clean-up days at local parks, along roads, or on a beach. You may also participate in activities such as a read-a-thons, singalongs, or even a talent show at a nursing home.
- Employees could remove graffiti from community buildings, mow lawns and weed yards for the elderly, build a playground for children, or work at a food bank or soup kitchen.
- Your employees could assemble baskets of supplies for mothers in need or collect outerwear for the homeless.
- People like to feel involved (and may resent being told how to volunteer), so make sure to ask your employees for ideas on how to give back.
- Research non-profit organizations in your community to see how your company’s volunteerism can do the most good. You will need to plan logistics and assign coordinators at least 3-6 months in advance.
Your company could plan to pay the registration fees so that employees can participate in charitable walkathons, marathons, or golf events. Any activity that is timed or counted can be a fundraising idea, and if there is nothing available in your area, your company could host one.
At Second Chances Garage, we appreciate our supporters and anything they give. They allow us to continue serving the Frederick County community. Without the contributions of cars, money, and time, we would not be able to carry out our mission. We have several ways that you can support Second Chances Garage and incorporate plans into your company’s business plan. Plan payroll deductions, giving days, days of service, and corporate activities with us! Learn how.