Corporate giving in 2021 stood at $21.08 billion—a 23.8% increase from 2020.1 If your company has any type of corporate giving program, your donations account for part of that $21.08 billion. However large or small, company leaders are seeking ways to measure their return on investment (ROI) of their corporate giving programs. Not only in terms of financial metrics, but also the ways corporate charitable giving moves the needle in their communities.
Assess the Tax Savings of a Corporate Giving Program’s Contributions
Financial metrics may include the amount of the donation compared to the financial benefits your company receives in return, such as tax deductions or increased sales that are tied to or made as a result of the donation.
For example, if your company donates $10,000 to a local charity and receives a $2,500 tax deduction, the ROI would be 25%. This method of calculating ROI is simple and easy to understand, but it’s important to keep in mind that the financial benefits of corporate giving are not always easy to measure.
In today’s business environment, it’s not enough to simply give money to a good cause without understanding the impact of your giving. Therefore, it’s crucial to measure the ROI of your corporate giving program to ensure that your resources are delivering your desired outcomes on many levels.
Non-financial metrics may include the impact of the donation on your community or organizations you support, as well as your company’s reputation and employee engagement in your corporate giving program, and as extension, employee recruitment, retention and satisfaction.
Move the Needle in Your Community
Another way to measure the ROI of your corporate giving is by looking at the impact on the community. This can include surveys or feedback from nonprofits you support, as well as any measurable changes in the community as a result of donations. For example, if your company donates money to a local homeless shelter and the shelter is able to add more beds, the ROI could be measured by the number of unhoused people who benefit from those extra beds giving them a place to sleep.
Nonprofits release annual reports that detail donation amounts and how they put those dollars to use in the community.
Determine Your Employees’ Impression of Your Charitable Giving Program
Corporate giving can also have a positive impact on your employees. This can be difficult to quantify, but can be measured nonetheless. For example, if your company donates to a local charity and employees begin to view the company in a more positive light, meaning you are seeing a higher number of applicants and longer tenures, this could be considered a measure of ROI. These are intangible benefits of corporate giving, but they can have a significant impact on your company’s bottom line.
Consider the Level of Employee Engagement and Satisfaction with Your Program
Employee engagement and satisfaction are important factors to consider when measuring the ROI of your corporate giving program. Corporate giving can have a positive impact on employee engagement and satisfaction, as employees are more likely to participate in volunteering activities. This can be measured through employee surveys or feedback. For example, if a company has a volunteer program and employees are participating in volunteering activities or making donations, this could be considered a measure of ROI.
In fact, the number of participants and donations is quite telling. Corporate giving is a way to align your company with the organizations and causes that matter most to your employees. If you are not getting the numbers you expected to participate, it might indicate a need to revisit your charitable focus or ensure your communications about your charitable program are more visible.
For additional information about corporate charitable giving, download our guide: 5 Ways to Increase Your Company’s Charitable Giving.
The ROI of a Corporate Giving Program is Different for Every Company
The saying goes, “Something is only ‘worth’ what someone else is willing to pay for it.” In the case of valuing your charitable giving program, it is worth what your employees and community find valuable in it.
Of course, you want your community, customers, employees, ownership, leadership and stakeholders to see your company as giving and engaged. Especially now when employees and customers alike expect corporate social responsibility. Not just establishing a corporate giving program, but also calculating its ROI shows you take that responsibility seriously.
The experts at Greater Horizons can help guide your program ROI evaluation. After all, programs built on deeper meanings are the ones that return the greatest ROI and can grow into corporate legacies. Contact us to learn more at 866.719.7886 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
1 Giving USA 2021 Annual Report