Corporate America Volunteerism – Tracking the Impact
Workplace volunteerism is on the rise. According to the 2010 Deloitte Volunteer IMPACT survey, 84% of companies recognize that volunteerism promotes long-term social goals. Companies are increasingly partnering with non-profits to provide skilled-based volunteer opportunities to employees, specific to their area of expertise.
While this increase in awareness is fantastic, more accurate metrics for tracking the impact of volunteer service are needed. Companies have traditionally tracked volunteer hours to illustrate their contribution. But as the skills companies offer to non-profits become more specialized, hours worked don’t reflect the whole picture. For instance, increasing the efficiency of a non-profit’s operations or introducing them to new technologies can dramatically help them achieve their short and long-term goals, beyond what a simple hour count can convey. According to the IMPACT survey, less than half of the companies track the impact of their volunteer effort per the non-profits’ goals.The lack of clear metrics, viewed through the non-profit lens, often means valuable expertise is misallocated and goes to waste. In the future, companies should better partner with non-profits, especially after their volunteer efforts end, to record the effects of their contributions and ensure they’re reaching their full social potential.