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Employees, Consumers Want A Say In Corporate Giving

Employees and consumers expect to be involved in corporate philanthropy and decisions, demanding business leaders consider a new approach that is more stakeholder driven. In fact, four of five consumers (84%) and employees (86%) believe that they should be able to have a say in how a business allocates charitable funds.

Businesses where leaders evolve the enterprise toward this new model of stakeholder philanthropy might benefit financially, with 73% of consumers saying they would purchase from a business and 78% of employees would work for a business if leaders sought their input into the charitable causes. 

Furthermore, 84% of consumers and 85% of employees say the more business leaders engage consumers and employees in charitable giving decisions, the more trust there is in that business, with respondents saying they are more likely to buy from, work for and stay with companies who engage them in philanthropy.

This is data from the new Engagement in Corporate Giving study by software platform Benevity. Surveying firm Wakefield conducted the questioning, asking 1,000 North American adults their thoughts on corporate philanthropy, including community investment and granting, and how a greater impact can be made. 

The data makes the case for charities engaging corporate leaders regarding philanthropic endeavors.

“Corporate philanthropy is the longest-standing way that businesses have given back, but there is a re-imagining happening in the wake of stakeholder capitalism,” said Sona Khosla, Benevity’s chief impact officer. Brands where leaders choose to engage stakeholders, notably employees and customers, in corporate philanthropy strategies “have a clear opportunity to create a more trusted relationship, helping to attract and engage today’s purpose-driven talent and customers,” she said.

Some key survey findings include:

  • 82% of consumers and 85% of employees say they frequently have no say or involvement in the organizations supported by the companies from which they make purchases or for which they work.
  • 84% of consumers and 86% of employees believe that stakeholders, including customers and employees, should be able to have a say in how a business allocates charitable funds. Of the 84% of consumers, almost 50% feel very strongly about this.
  • 32% of consumers responding and 39% of employees are interested in where charitable funds are allocated. Interest is even stronger (44%) among those who live near the headquarters of major brands and companies.
  • 78% of employees are likely to work for an organization who provides transparency into how it allocates its charitable donations.
  • 73% of consumers say they would be likely to use or shop with a business where their input on the charitable causes supported is sought. 

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