Driving Engagement and Business Performance: The Role of Employee Volunteering Programs

Sep 29, 2015 1:25 PM ET
2014 State of Corporate Citizenship

Driving Engagement and Business Performance: The Role of Employee Volunteering …

By thoughtfully developing and implementing initiatives like employee volunteer programs, corporate citizenship practitioners can benefit society and their business at the same time. The key is getting employees engaged.

The Center’s forthcoming Community Involvement survey finds that more than 90 percent of companies list improved employee engagement among the top three benefits of an employee volunteer program.This impressive statistic is supported by existing Center research—the 2014 State of Corporate Citizenship study—which finds that nearly 70 percent of executive respondents view employee volunteer programs as a top priority. It’s no surprise then that nearly 60 percent of executive respondents reported that they plan to increase resources for employee volunteer efforts in the next three years.

The link between employee volunteer programs and business performance has been long explored in academic research, and recent studies have confirmed the multitude of benefits that these programs offer to communities, employees, and the company. A 2010 study found that—by volunteering with their colleagues—employees are likely to form a stronger emotional attachment to the company, increasing their acceptance of corporate culture, while at the same time enhancing their awareness and understanding of business goals and strategies.

In a separate 2010 study, researchers found that employees who find value in their corporate volunteer program take greater pride in belonging to their company, are more likely to defend and promote the organization externally, have stronger intentions to remain with the company, and are more likely to go above and beyond required tasks to get the job done.

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