Resources for Teams
Unite These 3 Teams to Crush Your ESG Goals
Ron Yakar
July 13, 2022

Most companies fail to align their people-focused departments with each other.

They need to align their social impact goals to succeed in this new era, and a key part of this alignment is a unified volunteering strategy.   

The volunteering strategy should be created through collaboration among 3 departments: 

  • Human Resources (HR)
  • Environmental, Social & Governance (ESG)
  • Employer Branding

Not only do they need to synchronize their impact goals, they need to also align those impact goals with your overall corporate goals. 

Of course, these may be the core departments that benefit from a volunteering strategy, but the entire company will benefit as well. 

This is one of those precious win-win scenarios in which it's a great benefit to advertise when recruiting candidates and when working on boosting employee retention.

Let’s look into how these 3 departments can work together and where they can align, even if they have different agendas at times. 

Different goals that lead to unity 

Keep in mind that, while each department has its own goals, they all have shared interests.

Human Resources (HR)

The jobs market has shifted and job seekers are doing more research into what companies are doing for society beyond making money

In fact, 37% of Zoomers and 36% of Millennials have rejected job offers that don’t align with their personal values (Deloitte).

HR departments are constantly on a mission to maximize employee engagement. Volunteering helps with both recruitment and retention and drives employees to focus on their purpose over the years. 

Environmental, Social, & Governance (ESG)

This is an updated version of the well-known Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) function. 

Gone are the days when a large annual donation to a nonprofit would suffice. Now it's all about participating in volunteer initiatives that have a meaningful impact. 

And it's crucial to produce tangible results. Numerous institutions, like the World Bank and S&P Global, are providing companies with highly detailed ESG reports.


“ESG scores are comprised of 1000+ data points, 130+ questions, 30+ criteria scoring and assess over 8,000 companies globally” (S&P Global).

Employer Branding

This is what your company culture looks like to the outside world. A key part of keeping up a positive brand image is all the good you do by volunteering. 

This is about more than boosting credibility. In this interconnected world, more and more employers are genuinely taking the time to help vulnerable populations across the world.

Corporate volunteering is a win for each of these departments 

HR managers should lead the implementation of your volunteering strategy

Beyond the good vibes that come from donating our time to nonprofits, volunteering is a key part of the whole purpose-driven mindset that's taking over corporate America. 

HR departments everywhere are seeing a huge boost in volunteerism because it attracts top employees and builds up their professional skills through hands-on projects.

Volunteering also comes at a minimal cost, because it only requires that employees simply give their time and attention to nonprofits. 

In 2019, 66% of the member firms of the Chief Executives for Corporate Purpose, an association of billion-dollar firms, offered volunteer time off - 10% more than in 2016.

And when HR departments look for candidates who volunteer, they find more selfless, empathetic people who are more likely to be team players.

ESG managers should measure impact and share results with investors

ESG departments are seeing a huge uptick in highly skilled corporate volunteers, which is what nonprofits have always needed. And with technology like Vee, it's easier to quantify your impact.

Investors also know that companies with strong ESG scores tend to outperform those that don’t. They tend to have higher profitability and lower systemic risk compared to companies without any dedicated ESG team.

“High ESG-rated companies were more competitive and generated abnormal returns, often leading to higher profitability and dividend payments, especially when compared to low ESG-rated companies” (MSCI Inc.).

Employer Branding managers should leverage your volunteer work

Don’t forget all that glorious positive press that’ll come from all that volunteer work. It's not just about employee satisfaction. 

It’s also about using your proven social impact to sway customers who may have been on the fence about your product. The goodwill that your generosity creates can tip the scales. 

“Nearly 75% of consumers believe it’s a company’s responsibility to give back” (Output Measureable Guarantee, a Certified B Corporation). 

Why is there such a huge push for volunteerism from corporate employees? 

It's all about that purpose-driven mindset. Employees no longer want to go through the motions. 

The daily grind just isn’t enough. Employees want to be active and work together for a greater good.

It's also a great way for employees to meet people at different levels of your organization. When you’re helping people in need, rank doesn’t matter. Analysts can volunteer with Managing Partners - they’re all just people again. 

It's the ideal time to connect with people outside of work in a positive environment without the need to even discuss what's due next week. Senior managers get a chance to relax and simply get to know their teams without any pressure. 

What does corporate volunteering look like post-covid?

As we’re starting to get back to normal, there’s a big push for volunteerism on all sides. 

According to Points of Light, a volunteer organization founded by former President George H.W. Bush, over 73% of people say that volunteering is even more important post-pandemic. 

In-person volunteering has rebounded quite nicely, because our work-life balance has shifted to allow for more time spent in our neighborhood and less in the office. With less commuting, more flexibility, and more remote volunteer opportunities, now’s the time to join the volunteer revolution. 

In fact, 74% of nonprofits have already reported an increase in their volunteer numbers (Salesforce Nonprofit Trends Report, 2nd Edition).

Ok, I'm in! What’s next? 

First thing: it's important to plan your volunteer strategy in advance. A roadmap is essential when trying to synchronize between 3 distinct departments - HR, ESG, and Employer Branding.

By working with professionals to implement a holistic volunteering strategy - which includes quantitative impact measurement - you’ll be able to reap the rewards for the long haul.

Your employees will sing your praises. Top candidates will flock to your company. Customers will become more loyal and investors more confident.

What are you waiting for?

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