10 Employee Engagement Ideas for Giving Tuesday

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There are many ways businesses can be part of the Giving Tuesday global day of generosity by using their platforms, talents and resources for good. In previous posts, we shared some Giving Tuesday campaign ideas and success tips. Bright Funds also provides several ways you can engage your employees for Giving Tuesday. Here are ten ideas: 

1. Include a choice of donation methods:

Today’s workforce expects companies to lead with purpose, and having a corporate giving program is one of the best ways to build a positive culture around your purpose. It shows your employees that you care about their passions and encourages them to participate. Offering a variety of ways to donate such as payroll deductions, credit cards, bank drafts, PayPal, etc., makes it easier for your employees to give.

2. Match employee donations:

Matching gifts are a great way for organizations to amplify employee contributions. More than 8 in 10 employees say they are more likely to donate if a match is offered and 1 in 3 say they would give more if matching is applied. Not only does it encourage employees to participate, by offering to match gifts, you send a message that the company cares about what employees care about. Use your Giving Tuesday campaign as an opportunity to remind employees that you have a matching gift program, explain how it works and where to go to get started.

To further boost participation, provide a special matching incentive for employees for Giving Tuesday. If you already match, offer a higher match such as double or triple the regular match. If you don’t have matching, provide it for a limited time during your Giving Tuesday campaign.

Giving Tuesday Toolkit 

Interested in a comprehensive guide to Giving Tuesday? Our toolkit includes ideas, resources, and templates to help you engage your employees in your campaign.

Download the toolkit ➔

Giving Tuesday Toolkit

3. Create flexible volunteering opportunities:

Employee volunteering is an important part of your philanthropy program, and many people would rather volunteer than contribute financially. Providing employees with robust volunteering options gives them the flexibility to give back in the way they want for Giving Tuesday. To increase participation, give employees paid time off for service activities and be flexible on what counts as volunteering.

It’s easy to create a volunteer event or collection of volunteer events on Bright Funds for your employees. For example, if you are doing a service week across all office locations, create a “Week of Service” collection to group volunteer events offered during this week. You can also create “company sponsored” events featuring service opportunities with your nonprofit partners. Additional volunteering tools are available to help organize events, encourage hour tracking and empower employees to organize their own volunteering events. If you are working with charity partners, encourage them to post Giving Tuesday opportunities and events as well.

Remote employees may prefer to participate in virtual volunteering opportunities or, in some cases, local opportunities that are socially distant. Make sure they know how to find virtual volunteering opportunities by checking the box “can be done remotely” when searching. Check out our Virtual Volunteering Toolkit for a Hybrid Workforce for more ideas and resources to engage your remote workforce.

employees with purpose through giving

4. Give credit grants (donation funds) to employees:

Credit grants are donation funds granted to employees that can be directed to the nonprofit(s) of their choice. They’re a great way to grow program participation and impact! Credit grants can be used as part of automated programs or as one-time gifts. Here are some ideas on how to use them, and any of these can be tied to your Giving Tuesday campaign:

  • Give credit grants to all new hires at the time of onboarding.
  • Send credit grants to all employees who have reached a work anniversary.
  • Run a competition and provide credit grants as prizes. 
  • Plan a charitable goods drive (food, toys, books, etc.) and award participants. 
  • Enter all employees who have participated in the program this year into a raffle and issue credit grants to the winners! You could also limit the raffle to specific participation rates such as employees who have donated at least $100 or volunteered for 10 hours.
  • Issue credit grants to employees who have not participated in the program this year – this is a good way to get them onto the platform. 
  • Issue special Giving Tuesday credit grants to all employees. This will help get the word out and boost engagement at the same time!
  • Give a credit grant to employees who log their volunteer hours by the end of the year.
  • Celebrate employees who are program champions with a credit grant award.
  • Create physical Bright Funds gift cards for credit grants that can be sent to employees.

5. Match volunteer hours:

Volunteer hour matching, or “Dollars for Doers,” is a great way to encourage employees to volunteer for Giving Tuesday and thank them for investing their time. It provides financial donations to nonprofits based on the number of volunteer hours performed by employees. For example, if an employee volunteers for 10 hours at the local animal shelter and the Dollars for Doers rate is $10/hour, the employee would receive $100 to donate to a nonprofit of his/her choice. Use your Giving Tuesday campaign as an opportunity to remind employees that you have a Dollars for Doers program, explain how it works and where to go to get started. Consider offering a higher match for Giving Tuesday, or, if you don’t yet have a program, you could provide it for a limited time during your campaign. 

6. Feature a Fund:

Create a Fund to highlight your nonprofit partners or use the Bright Funds Giving Tuesday Fund in your campaign. A Fund is like a mutual fund for charitable giving, and it’s a simple way to highlight your nonprofit partners and the causes that matter most. It can contain one or several nonprofits, and any donations to a Fund are split evenly among the nonprofits. You can use Funds to support specific fundraising initiatives tied to Giving Tuesday or for causes that you want to support on an ongoing basis.

7. Run a Giving Tuesday campaign:

Campaigns are a fantastic way to connect your employees to giving and volunteering opportunities for Giving Tuesday. When you create a campaign on Bright Funds, you can establish goals, special matching and any combination of nonprofits, Funds and volunteering events as part of your campaign.

8. Encourage employees to send Bright gifts to each other:

Bright Gifts is a feature that allows employees to give each other credits that can be redeemed with the nonprofit of their choice. If you have the feature enabled, encourage employees to send Bright Gifts to their colleagues during your Giving Tuesday campaign as a way of expressing thanks and appreciation.

9. Involve employees in grantmaking:

Employee grants allow employees to nominate a nonprofit of their choice for a grant. If you have this feature enabled, encourage employees to participate in the program as part of your Giving Tuesday campaign.

10. Get creative:

The sky is the limit when it comes to creating successful campaigns. Integrate giving into the activities your employees already love such as competitions, raffles, rewards, events, etc. Just search for “fund raising” and “volunteering” ideas for additional inspiration but here are a few to get you started:

  • Use a Fund and/or campaign to run a fundraiser during Giving Tuesday. Offer matching to multiply the funds raised by employees.
  • Promote some friendly competition between teams or locations. See which teams have the highest participation, donation or volunteering rates donate during your Giving Tuesday campaign. Award the winners with matches, credit grants or other prizes.
  • Alternatively, focus the competition on other desired goals such as hitting revenue goals or completing learning and award the winners with credit grants. 
  • Reward volunteers with automated virtual badges.
  • Design tailored experiences for employees in different locations through on-platform custom messaging. Some locations may prefer volunteering over giving, so adapt your Giving Tuesday campaign focus accordingly.
  • Host a Corporate Citizenship Awards event to recognize top employees serving their communities.
  • Give employees time off and special swag to participate in company-sponsored days of service. 
  • Promote volunteer opportunities with nonprofit and community investment partners.
  • Create a Giving Tuesday community grant opportunity and invite nonprofits to apply.
  • Re-visit earlier disasters as part of your Giving Tuesday campaign to help with long-term relief.
  • Create/encourage your employees to create fundraising events such as bake sales, raffles, silent auctions, art/fashion shows, concerts, sports, etc. using Bright Funds. 
  • Invite employees to share their own ideas for donating their time and talent.

Download our Giving Tuesday Toolkit for more ideas and resources to engage your employees.

Julie Yamamoto

Julie Yamamoto

Julie is a Content Strategist at Bright Funds. She works closely with clients to deliver compelling content that inspires action. Her work has been featured in several enterprise and nonprofit digital channels, as well as GreenBiz and American Forests. She is a trained Climate Reality leader with a passion for environmental topics (technology for good, sustainable business, forests and carbon markets, climate change, conservation and biodiversity). In the future, she hopes to start a nonprofit focused on harnessing creativity to protect nature.