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Giving back is not a priority for most UK firms (though it should be)

Research finds that more than half of employees claim that their company does not have an official charity that they plan to support this year, and 43 per cent of workers across the UK feel that their company should be doing more to help charities and their local community.

The research, commissioned for the Institute of Fundraising’s National Convention 2013 “Give As You Live”, asked 1,000 employees about their bosses’ attitudes to giving back. 

The results show that half of Londoners (50 per cent) feel that their company should be doing more to help; and employees in Northern Ireland (64 per cent), the North East (56 per cent) and Scotland (52 per cent) are concerned that their company is not doing enough for charity.

“It is sad that employees feel that charity giving in the workplace has taken a back seat,” says Polly Gowers, founder and CEO of Everyclick, the company behind Give As You Live. 

“We understand that the downturn has meant companies have changed the way they allocate resources; but there are easy easy to encourage regular fundraising. In the digital age, CSR initiatives needn’t put pressure on people’s time but should be seen as a way to increase employee commitment and morale.”

In the last year, only 41 per cent of UK employees have taken part in charity fundraising activities at work or with colleagues. Older employees are least likely to have taken part in charitable activities, while younger people are embracing the opportunities that their companies are offering.

Workplace Giving

The survey also reveals that one fifth of employees (21 per cent) are unsure if their employer offers Workplace Giving schemes (aka Payroll Giving or Give As You Earn, where employees’ chosen charities automatically receives their gifts tax-free).

“Although some employees perceive that charity giving is not a priority for their employer, it is heartening that they want to engage in giving something back at work,” says Elena Joseph, head of new projects at Workplace Giving UK. 

“We’ve always found that the key to successful engagement with companies and their workforces is to make it as easy as possible for employees to join in. Whether it’s using digital fundraising methods like Give As You Live, facilitating donations from pay via a Workplace Giving scheme or implementing other micro donation systems so that any employee can take part even if it’s only by giving odd pennies, collectively they have the potential to raise thousands of additional pounds for UK charities.

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