How volunteering can improve businesses and the community with Circle Research

Letting staff out of the office to participate in voluntary activity can be a daunting prospect for any business. But Circle Research, the B2B market research agency, has looked at this issue more closely and revealed that businesses don’t need to choose between ‘giving back’ and profits – in fact they can have both!
What’s in it for businesses we hear you ask?
Well, as well as a nice rosy, satisfied glow inside there are tangible business benefits to volunteering. 40% of businesses that got involved in volunteering saw a boost in employee morale, 38% received positive PR and 21% found it created a stronger team. As well as this a whopping 95% of businesses who have volunteered would recommend it to other businesses.
Circle has even put together a five point plan to help businesses get into volunteering. So, if you’re tempted, here is where to start:

  • Focus on the added value volunteering could bring to your business, rather than what it might ‘cost’. With benefits including an increase in employee morale, team building opportunities and positive PR the positives can far outweigh the negatives.
  • Get dates in the diary as far in advance as possible. This is simple, the more notice employees have, the easier it is to plan workloads and personal lives to include volunteer work.
  • Have a range of volunteering options. Employees are all different so play to their strengths and make sure you cater for everyone.
  • Work with a broker. In Circle’s study ‘time’ was one of the main factors found to prevent businesses from volunteering. A broker will reduce the time that volunteering takes to manage as they match your skills with community and charity needs.
  • And finally, take on a challenge! Circle’s study found that businesses are much more likely to volunteer in sectors with children or community spaces at their heart. But the most ‘beneficial’ areas to volunteer in are the most challenging, such as rehabilitation and mental illness. Considering a less ‘traditional’ approach to volunteering could be the most rewarding by far.

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