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Jul 13 2015

3 Simple Ways to Help Your Employees Help Others


When you think of a “good person,” you probably picture the friend who gives 10% of her income to charity, or the man who volunteers every week at the shelter, or a former professor who was always championing the rights of minorities.

You probably don’t think of your company.

But in 1819, the Supreme Court ruled corporations were legal persons, i.e. citizens. That means your company has a voluntary obligation to do good—just like everyday people have voluntary obligations to do good.

But not only will practicing corporate social responsibility help the world, it will also help your company attract and retain the best talent. More than 75% of workers born after 1983 say they chose their current positions based on their company’s “sense of purpose.”

So with that in mind, here’s how to create a socially responsible culture.

1.  Encourage Eco-Conscious Practices

If you’re looking for an easy, effective way to engage employees, instilling green habits in the work-place is an awesome way to do it.

For example, you can start a recycling campaign that tracks how much the company is recycling. Establish a goal (like “Reduce waste by 5% in one month), and then reward the entire team if it’s achieved. Your employees be motivated by the game aspect, and it’ll also increase their team-work abilities. Plus, by cutting down on waste, you’ll even save money.

You can also install bike lockers, give public transit subsidies, and offer telecommuting options. All of these choices will reduce your corporate footprint and show your team members your company is committed to setting and maintaining high ethical standards.

2.  Offer Paid Time Off for Volunteering

A great technique for encouraging your employees to give back to the community is to establish one or two days a year where they can work at a local non-profit rather than coming into the office.

You can make this as formal or informal as you’d like. For example, some companies ask employees to request the time off; others allow a little more spontaneity. And you can also choose what qualifies, like whether employees get their choice of organizations or receive a list of approved organizations.

Maybe your team members have many valuable skills they could offer non-profits, such as web design or event planning. Rather than giving them time to volunteer, you can also provide PTO in exchange for pro bono services for charities.

This policy will strengthen your company’s ties to the area while allowing employees to invest in causes they care about.

3.  Give Employees a Choice

The more input your employees have over the company’s charitable activity, the more valued they’ll feel—which will naturally drive engagement.

There are many ways to incorporate choice into your social responsibility programs. For example, you could start a corporate gift matching policy. Not only will this support worthy organizations, but it will show your staff you care about what they care about.

Alternatively, you could hold a company-wide vote for picking an organization to which to contribute. This opens up the opportunity for employees to have a friendly competition to campaign for their favorite choice, culminating in a festive announcement of the winner. And the contribution doesn’t have to be financial, either. Maybe your company will hold a volunteer day at the non-profit that gets the most votes.

How does your company practice social responsibility? And which of these ideas is your favorite?

About Signature Consultants, LLC

Headquartered in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, Signature Consultants was established in 1997 with a singular focus: to provide clients and consultants with superior staffing solutions. For the ninth consecutive year, Signature was voted as one of the “Best Staffing Firms to Work For” and is named the 15th Largest IT Staffing Firm in the United States (source: Staffing Industry Analysts). With 29 locations throughout North America, Signature annually deploys thousands of consultants to support, run, and manage their clients’ technology needs. Signature offers IT staffing, consulting, managed solutions, and direct placement services. For more information on the company, please visit https://www.sigconsult.com. Signature Consultants is the parent company to Hunter Hollis and Madison Gunn.

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