Belief in cause drives employee volunteers

Most employees of companies with volunteer programs participate, and the primary driver of that participation is employees’ belief in the cause their company supports, a new survey says.

More than half of employees take part in company-sponsored volunteer events, says the study by LBG Associates and LBG Research Institute.

The leading driver of their desire to help is a personal belief in the cause or organization the event benefits, followed by a wish to help community groups that are struggling because of the recession.

Employees also are motivated to volunteer when their employer makes a donation to the charity where an employee volunteers, the study says.

While employees say the best reward for volunteering is a donation to their charity, volunteer managers say such programs are underutilized.

“Better and more frequent communication about grant programs and other top motivators will likely produce greater return on investment for the companies, not to mention greater impact in the communities served,” Linda Gornitsky, president of LBG Associates, says in a statement.

In addition to helping community groups, volunteer programs have a positive impact on employees themselves, with more than seven in 10 saying the existence of such programs makes them feel better about their company.

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