Corporate social responsibility (CSR) has, rightfully so, become a priority for companies. An estimated 90% of companies on the S&P 500 index published a CSR report in 2019, compared to just 20% in 2011.i Moreover, major events in 2020, such as COVID-19 and social justice movements, led to many companies bringing philanthropic initiatives to the forefront. According to a survey by The Conference Board:ii
- Nearly 61% of companies spent more on philanthropy in 2020 than budgeted.
- 58% of respondents used incremental funds for COVID-19 efforts.
- 54% used incremental funds to help address racism in the U.S.
Some organizations have been ahead of the game when it comes to doing good. For Quotient, giving back has been a part of the company’s DNA since the beginning. In the words of Steven Boal, CEO and Founder, “Ever since our earliest years as Coupons.com, helping people has always been a core mission and value of our company.”iii
See how to boost employee impact
Find out how Quotient, a leading digital media and promotions technology company, expands workplace giving opportunities through Bright Funds and sees a significant increase in philanthropic engagement by its employees.
Curious to learn more about the Quotient values of giving back and the new Quotient for Change program, I recently had the opportunity to speak with Rachel Moret, Senior Specialist, HR Programs and Brenton Miller, Manager, HR Programs and Culture. Here are a few highlights from that discussion:
Why do you think it’s important for companies in your industry to have a corporate philanthropy program?
Rachel: I believe that businesses have a responsibility to support and grow the communities they operate in. Corporate philanthropy programs present a unique opportunity for companies to be agents for change in their communities by leveraging corporate strengths, services and platforms to give back. We’ve seen the desire in our own employees for a stronger philanthropic program. Our teams have always wanted to give back and volunteer, but they didn’t always know where to start.
Having this program offers them both frequent and varied opportunities to give back, while cementing the concept that philanthropy is a key element of Quotient culture.
How is Quotient for Change different from your previous impact programs?
Brenton: Our previous programs, Coupons for Change and the Power of We, provided an annual day of service for employees as well as corporate donations for disaster relief and current event causes such as social justice. With Quotient for Change, we really wanted to give employees more opportunities to give back while also providing more visibility and focus for the program. Our new program offers more frequent and diverse ways for employees to engage and is also geared toward moving the needle in three defined areas– economic stability, technological equity and environmental sustainability.
Brenton Miller participating in a Quotient for Change fundraiser (image source: Quotient)
Quotient employees participating in a Coupons for Change day of service in 2012 (image source: Quotient)
Three pillars of the Quotient for Change program (image source: Quotient)
How are you encouraging Quotient employees to participate in the program?
Rachel: Bright Funds has enabled us to offer donation matching, one of the most requested programs, and now our employees across the globe have a direct avenue to find volunteer and giving opportunities through the platform. Other ways we are encouraging participation include a new hire credit grant, paid time off for volunteering and year-round giving opportunities. We also frequently highlight Bright Funds’ funds and campaigns and consistently incorporate them into our philanthropic initiatives. This has been especially helpful for us during the COVID-19 pandemic as it allows our employees to give back to causes such as Juneteenth or Pride Month, even when volunteering in-person is not an option.
Employees participating in the Quotient for Change Week of Action (image source: Quotient)
In what ways has Bright Funds contributed to Quotient’s success?
Rachel: Bright Funds played a central role in the re-launch of our program earlier this year, particularly in making the program more accessible to our globally dispersed workforce. The events feature has also been super helpful for us – it was very easy to organize a Week of Action for our employees where they could donate or sign up for volunteer opportunities, irrespective of their location. Ultimately, having a seamless, globally accessible giving platform like Bright Funds has really helped to increase philanthropic engagement and participation amongst our employees domestically and abroad. Looking ahead, when the world opens up a little more, we may look into Dollars for Doers to encourage volunteerism as well.
What advice would you give to others on how to run a successful program?
Brenton: Having a clear vision for your program is important to ensure it aligns with your company’s priorities and values. That gives you a baseline to start with and sets the goals for building in the future.
At the same time, it’s crucial that employees have a say in what the program looks like and which organizations they want to support. Our philanthropy program originally grew out of a desire by our employees to give back. With Quotient for Change, we are establishing local volunteer committees to lead events and inform future activities and decisions. These committees are critical to finding ways to engage employees in volunteer opportunities that are relevant to them. Do they want to volunteer at a local food-packing initiative, or donate to causes via Bright Funds and have a matching gift? Or do they want to wait for a larger team event to give back?
Finally, be prepared to dedicate time and resources to launch and run a successful program. Placing an emphasis on global, cross-functional support is also vital. We don’t have a dedicated CSR team, but Rachel and I both allocate time to support the program, whether that’s in putting together initiatives, communications or tracking progress. Having a partner like Bright Funds helps us by centralizing many of the program elements, as well as providing easy access to pre-vetted campaign funds and toolkits. They are easy to re-package and send to employees, and that saves us a lot of time we’d otherwise spend researching which nonprofits would be best to support for specific cause areas. That kind of support is vital to the success of our program.
To learn more, download the case study “How Quotient Is Boosting Its Employee Impact”
Quotient is the leading digital media and promotions technology company for advertisers, retailers and consumers. The company’s omnichannel platform is powered by exclusive consumer spending data, location intelligence and purchase intent data to reach millions of shoppers daily and deliver measurable, incremental sales.