Magazine article Management Today

Brainfood: Crash Course in Charity in the Workplace

Magazine article Management Today

Brainfood: Crash Course in Charity in the Workplace

Article excerpt

Your staff are a generous bunch, but they might give a lot more if they were better organised. The charities they give to are probably missing out on tax incentives, and a workplace-giving scheme might help the company in other ways.

Put it on the payroll. The easiest way to facilitate your staff's donations is to sign up for Payroll Giving. Individuals nominate a charity and the sum they want to donate monthly; this is automatically deducted, with tax rebated to the charity.

Get a grant. The Government has launched a scheme that pays a pounds 300-pounds 500 grant to SMEs that sign up for Payroll Giving. Each employee's donation will be matched by the Government up to pounds 10 a month for the first six months. Lucinda Frostick of the Institute of Fundraising says: 'Small companies often fear it will be expensive to introduce, but our research showed that those companies that could attribute a cost to setting up Payroll Giving estimated it was only pounds 150-pounds 200.'

Count the benefits. A study by the Giving Campaign found that 61% of firms that ran a giving programme said their image improved; 34% said it boosted staff morale. Improved recruitment and retention are also cited. 'It also builds an element of team spirit among the workforce,' says Peter Driver of Charity Begins at Work magazine.

Promote it. Encourage staff to sign up, perhaps by calling in professional fundraisers. Peter O'Hara, MD of Workplace Giving UK, says: 'You will be lucky to get participation of 2% of employees if you don't promote the scheme, but you can expect take-up of 25% or higher if you do. …

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