By: Nita Kirby, Director of Client Solutions at CyberGrants
Whether it be child or animal welfare, medical advancements or worldwide atrocities, there is something out there that inspires action from you. Because there are so many causes to support, often a few that a majority of employees have some connection to, you would think the feeling of care would result in action. However, anyone who has been close to the creation or management of a corporate social responsibility program can agree that participation is quite often the leading challenge in success. Most of the time, the problem isn’t lack of empathy.
For example, one of the best places to discover new or donate to nonprofits is at the cash register of a grocery store. We’ve all, at least once, completed a shopping trip only to be prompted by the cashier to add a donation to the total. The presentation is simple. The process is easy, requires no more steps than the original task was going to take and can even add the bonus of exact change. Many charities collaborate with local stores to run these programs because of the simplicity, which almost always equates to great participation.
Integration with Payroll
Communication is one of the best contributions technology has made to business. That’s not just email and instant messenger either; it’s how communicative two different tools can be with each other and the new dynamic their integrations can bring to an old process. For example, your company may have been using the same payroll system for years with a little updating, but generally the same process.
CSR software takes that system and adds the dimension of easy employee giving. Similar to the grocery store, a payroll system that integrates with a CSR software will allow your workers to donate to your program as easily as they can check their pay stub. The employee will not have to learn a new program, process or remember new account information. Similar to the one tab offer of the cashier, employees have one login and all their financial and budget information is in one place. Tack on the fact that CSR software can maintain a record of all charitable donations to refer to in tax season.
One Stop Communications
A large challenge for CSR participation is communicating to employees that it’s even happening in the first place. While some employees are observant enough to notice the poster hanging in the breakroom, others would prefer to hear about company programs directly from their manager (38%). One report found 43% of surveyed employees preferred to learn about philanthropic opportunities through internal email or newsletters.
No one avenue works for all employees or all organizations. The first step is understanding your culture, but the next is covering more than one base. CSR software can make communicating a program or project in multiple ways easy while also helping management facilitate employee giving program discussion. Digital CSR tools can link to company calendars for reminders, integrate with the intranet and provide links for easy sharing via email or to be printed on tangible flyers. Employees can go from conversations with management right to the program where donations can be made with a click of a button.
Technology has also gotten a reputation for it’s never being “off,” and while that’s not always the best thing, there’s no denying its convenience. Hate them or love them, push notifications are one of the best reminders for an upcoming bill, calendar event or weather forecast. While not all are welcome, on average, people are excited to see those little pop ups that help avoid paying a late fee or missing a new deal at their favorite shop.
While it might not be the best plan to enact push notifications in your CSR communication plan, the lesson remains that people like gentle reminders with little pressure in places they feel they have the power to choose. Today’s CSR software can be accessed from any device including mobile, which grants employees the flexibility to participate wherever there is internet access. Again, the reason the consumer giving example mentioned before is so successful is it’s convenient to the patron. CSR software offers that convenience.
Technology and CSR software is responding to today’s workforce and that’s exactly why participation and opportunity has the potential to grow at amazing rates. The possibilities for better, more successful employee giving programs are only limited by a company’s understanding of its workforce’s culture and the priority the organization places on better communication and interaction.
What are some of the ways you think CSR software can improve employee giving? Share your thoughts with us in the comments below!
About Nita Kirby:
Ms. Nita Kirby serves as Director of Client Strategy and oversees CyberGrants’ strategic service management with a majority of its corporate clients. In addition, Nita is responsible for ensuring the success of philanthropic programs for many of CyberGrants’ key customers and oversees process improvements for how the company manages its client’s programs and relationships. This effort includes detailed benchmarking, employee engagement methodologies and financial modeling. Nita serves on numerous non-profit and volunteer boards and continues to stay engaged with the local non-profits community. Nita has worked for one of largest non-profits in the US, where she provided extensive support to some of the largest employee giving programs in the country.
With a BS in Business Administration and vast experience in program development and administrative protocol, this experience has allowed Nita to incorporate best practice processes in each of her client engagements and focus on deliverables and client satisfaction. In addition, Nita is a Lean Six Sigma certified Green Belt providing her with expanded insight into how processes affect outcomes.