In an effort for organizations to become more socially responsible, enable their employees to give back in ways that are meaningful to them, and unite their company around a shared purpose—a social impact program is the answer.
A social impact program aims to connect those who want to help (organization and their employees) with those who need help (nonprofits and charities). A program where organizations can discover causes, involve their employees in charitable giving activities, track social impact, and share their progress with the world.
With the proper guidelines and knowledge in place, starting a social impact program requires minimal time and resources. In just four weeks, your organization can build a culture focused on social change and create a program where each of your employees can start making a difference in the communities that once served them.
The four-week guide to building a social impact program is outlined below:
Gauge employee interest & involvement
A social impact program won’t be successful without your employees, who, when engaged and involved, help achieve your organization’s social good mission.
Use the following criteria to evaluate if a social impact program is a worthwhile option for your organization to pursue. Ask your employees the following questions with a quick survey:
- Do you currently volunteer outside of work? If yes, how often do you volunteer?
- What causes would you be passionate about supporting with a social impact program?
- Do you currently support nonprofits or charities (i.e., through donating, fundraising, or volunteering)?
- Would you be interested in organizing a peer-to-peer fundraiser or an in-person event on behalf of a cause?
Based on the responses, if you gauge that your employees have the interest and passion to be active community volunteers, donors, and event organizers— then a social impact program is worthwhile for your organization to pursue.
Evaluate social impact platforms
To effectively carry out a social impact program, you need a social impact platform.
A social impact platform provides organizations with the tools they need to amplify, measure, and share the good they are doing. As the goal of a social impact program is connecting those who need help with those who want to help, a social impact platform acts on this goal—directly connecting nonprofits and businesses.
Use the following criteria to evaluate social impact platforms. Asking, “Does this social impact platform enable our organization to..”
- Build a customized, branded profile to share the good we are doing.
- Centralize our existing CSR and employee giving programs in one place.
- Support existing nonprofits/charities and find new causes to partner with.
- Measure employee participation and celebrate their achievements.
- Track our organization’s social impact with simplified, real-time metrics.
- Enable employees to give back in ways that are meaningful to them.
Despite conducting your own research, make sure you schedule a demo with the provider of a social impact platform. A demo will dive into the features, functionality, and usability of the platform—allowing you to check off each requirement listed above.
Get buy-in from decision-makers
Pitch the information you have gathered from your initial research and the demo to your executive team for approval. In addition to talking about some of the main features and benefits, be sure to include the potential ROI of a social impact program. A social impact program can result in:
- Increased community involvement- through volunteering, fundraising, and donations.
- Employee retention (decrease in hiring costs).
- Greater net savings.
Once you have gained approval from your executive team, it is time to start taking advantage of a robust social impact platform to ensure your journey to becoming socially responsible is as successful as can be!
Week 1 is focused on the setup to ensure your company page is completed and your employees are onboarded:
Customize your company page
Your company page on a social impact platform is an extension of your brand. Start by adding your logo, a hero banner, a tagline, call-to-action buttons, and customizing the colour of your company page.
Discover causes to support
Search for causes in your community that align with your organizational values. Once a nonprofit or charity is selected, your organization can volunteer, fundraise, and donate on their behalf. If you have already been supporting several nonprofits and charities prior to implementing a social impact platform, now is the time to find them on the platform (or invite them if not) and connect.
Additionally, seek input from your employees on which causes they would like to see your company support. Selecting causes that align with your organizational values and your employees’ values will amplify the good your company can achieve.
Invite your employees
Invite employees to join your company page so they can gain insight into the causes you support and familiarize themselves with your company’s social good mission. Once employees have a clear understanding of the CSR issues your organization is trying to tackle, they will be more inclined to participate in a social impact program that addresses these social matters.
After you have set up your company page, invited your employees, and selected charities & nonprofits to partner with, week two is focused on increasing your usage within the platform:
Find opportunities within causes
Within the causes you have selected: explore volunteer days, fundraising events, and donation opportunities. Take note of any immediate volunteer or event opportunities that might be worthwhile to become involved with on a company-wide scale in the next week.
Encourage internal use
Message a number of employees within the platform and send them any upcoming volunteer/event opportunities you have found to date. Encouraging employees to apply to a volunteer opportunity or register to attend a charitable event might be the push they need to get started on their social good journey!
Spearhead a company-wide initiative
After having a week to connect with nonprofits & charities and explore opportunities within those causes, you might find some fundraising events worth attending as a team. However, does your organization want to create a charitable event of your own on behalf of a cause?
Here are some basic steps to follow for setting up a fundraiser event:
- Seek approval from the nonprofit/charity to host an event.
- Choose a date, time & location (that works for both parties).
- Speak with the location vendor to organize the logistics of the event.
- Set up an event page within your social impact platform to include all of the respective information.
- If applicable, include a donation bar to raise money prior to the event.
- Share your event page internally to increase employee involvement.
- Share your event page externally to increase attendance, sponsorships, and donations.
Weeks 3 & 4
You have been onboarded with a social impact platform, found meaningful causes to support, encouraged employee involvement, and even started a company-wide initiative. Now is the time to share your story and monitor the impact of those efforts:
Share your social good story
Don’t underestimate how much of a difference you are making with each social good initiative your organization undertakes. Share your social good story to demonstrate your values and build brand equity.
For example, post photos from a recent charitable event you organized or re-share a video from one of your employee’s volunteer days (with their permission). Think of your social good story as a LinkedIn profile—one that should always be kept updated with recent activity to engage your followers.
Add metrics alongside the visuals you share to increase your brand credibility. For instance, if you recently organized a fundraiser on behalf of a cause, add how much money you raised in donations.
Monitor social impact metrics
In week 4, you will start to see your impact grow with the initiatives your employees are taking part in: such as making donations, participating in volunteer days, or fundraising for an event. Utilize the analytics tool within your social impact platform to see:
- How much have you raised globally?
- How many volunteer hours have you invested?
- How many partners (nonprofits and charities) have you supported?
- How many employees (members) are part of your social impact program?
**These metrics should be calculated by combining the efforts of your employees with those of your company.
Share your company page
Include an icon on your company website or social media page so that outside users (such as your investors, consumers, future employees etc..) can ‘follow’ your social impact page and see the impact you have been making!
Your journey to building a social impact program doesn’t end after four weeks. Continue to do the following:
- Build and maintain relationships with nonprofits and charities.
- Explore CSR initiatives within those causes to take part in.
- Engage employees (old and new) throughout the process.
- Measure employee involvement.
- Track your social impact.
Want to build a social impact program today?
Develop a culture focused on social change and become an all-encompassing organization that others aspire to be by building a social impact program.
As a social impact program is dependent on the right platform, Kambeo’s social impact platform has the capabilities and resources in place to help your organization become an influential changemaker. Set up your organization for free and let Kambeo transform your social impact program from an idea into a reality.
Download our short-form guide on how to build a social impact program: