Nonprofits have an unparalleled opportunity to move from corporate handouts to corporate partnerships. Dollars for Doers is a great place to start – and here’s how.
This strikes me as odd. Most nonprofits have little to no awareness of their corporate partner’s Dollars For Doers (DFD) program. Karen Franco asked a great question on LinkedIn a few months ago after reading our article ‘Dollars For Doers: The Incentive Nobody Wants.’
“from the NP side we see the positive outcome from Dollars for Doers programs but never realized how little of the potential is actually being tapped into. I liked some of the suggestions that were put forward on how companies can encourage higher rates of participation but I am wondering what non-profits can do to help encourage better participation rates in these types of company programs.”
Karen was responding to the report by the Committee Encouraging Corporate Philanthropy(CECP), Giving inNumbers: 2011 Edition stating, “Dollars for Doers has been the most frequently offered employee-volunteer program” for the past few years. More companies offer Dollars for Doers than any other employee volunteering incentive including employee recognition awards, flexible time for volunteering or even a day of service.” (Read the full article). However, the average participation rate in these programs is a dismal 7.8% In our article, we outlined some possible reasons for the disconnect between the availability of DFD’s and the low participation rates (read the full article), but Karen’s question takes us to a much more interesting discussion: How can nonprofits encourage participation in these programs?
We believe nonprofits are key to the success of programs like this.
Six Ideas to Encourage Participation in Dollars For Doers
1. Ask your volunteers if they know about the dollar-for-doers program where they work. If they say they don’t have one ask if you can help them find out (tactfully). Most employees don’t know their company have a program in place.
2. Contact organizations that build memberships based on corporate volunteering and workplace giving. Ask which of their members have a Dollar for Doers program and then poll your volunteers to see who works at those companies. Here are some organizations to get you started:
- Association of Corporate Contributions Professionals (ACCP)
- BSR (Business for Social Responsibility)
- Boston College’s Center for Corporate Citizenship
- Business Civic Leadership Center
- Corporate Responsibility Officer (CR Magazine)
- Entrepreneurs Foundation
- Business In The Community
- CSR Europe
- European Foundation Centre
- International Business Leadership Forum
3. Contact the companies that have the program and offer to partner with them to get the employees recording the data necessary to trigger Dollar for Doers. (Oh my gosh – companies will LOVE you for this).
4. Send emails/tweets/Facebook updates and regularly remind employees to submit the info to trigger DOD’s.
5. Make it a contest. If you have a number of employees from various companies, find them and then have a friendly competition. Which employees can raise the most DOD’s from the company? (Again, companies will LOVE you for this – so be sure to tell them about it.)
6. Put obvious info about DOD’s, how they work, and how to find out if your company has this kind of program on your website, Facebook page, promo material, even training material.
These programs represent one of the easiest and most obvious opportunities for nonprofits to begin acting like a partner – rather than an organization looking for hand-outs.
Realized Worth works with companies to engage employees in corporate citizenship initiatives. Give us a call to talk about what we can do for you. 317.371.4435