Blog Post

8 Top Workplace Giving Trends and How to Use Them in 2023

December 30, 2022
read time

The number of people who give to charity through their workplaces is spiking again, and for good reason. Workplace giving trends are on the rise.

According to Nonprofit Source, corporate giving in 2021 hit more than $20 billion — an 8% increase over 2019. A dive into the statistics behind that rise reveals some fascinating workplace giving trends that predict the future evolution of workplace giving.

5 Key Takeaways from 2022 Workplace Giving Statistics

For starters, the people doing the most giving may not be who you expect — and they're giving to causes that reflect a growing awareness of today's most pressing issues. Check out these five key takeaways from Deloitte's 2021 Workplace Giving Survey.

  1. 37% of the professionals surveyed made donations through a workplace giving program.
  2. However, 58% of professionals between the ages of 18 and 34 donated through a workplace giving program.
  3. 37% want the opportunity to donate to specific programs and causes they care about.
  4. 57% support causes they're personally connected to, and 40% donate because it makes them feel good.
  5. The top causes for workplace donations in 2021 were hunger and homelessness, education, social equality, and racial equity.

These trends suggest that employees — especially younger employees — are committed to making the world a better place, and are willing to put their dollars where their hearts are. 

They also reflect some larger workplace giving trends that can help guide companies looking to create more engagement in and impact from their workplace giving programs.

8 Workplace Giving Trends To Inspire You in 2023

From new technology to deepening partnerships with the community, workplace giving programs are rapidly evolving to be more inclusive, more personal, and more equitable. 

These are 8 key trends to watch — and adopt — in 2023.

1. Peer-to-Peer Fundraising

In 1984, a group of community advocates founded the WALK for the Homeless in Worcester, Massachusetts, to raise awareness and funding to support programs serving the unhoused population in the small city. Over the past 37 years, thousands of people, many of them walking as part of a workplace team, have raised millions of dollars for their cause. They were ahead of their time. 

In 2020, there were hundreds of peer-to-peer fundraising events across the country. The top 30 collectively raised more than $975 million for their respective causes. 

You may know the peer-to-peer fundraising model best as a walkathon, danceathon, or 5K run where people create personal donation pages to get their friends and family to donate to a cause. They've become very popular as corporate fundraising events because let's face it, they're lots of fun, and they're a great way to build team spirit. Companies often field teams of employees who participate, often competing with rival companies to raise the most money for the chosen cause.

Pro Tip: Supporting an established peer-to-peer fundraising event gives you a jump start on the planning and execution. They often provide ready-made donation pages and toolkits to boost your success rate.

2. Challenge Fundraising

Remember the ice bucket challenge? For several weeks in 2014, social media networks were flooded with images of people dumping buckets of ice over themselves — often in the middle of a snowy landscape. The viral fundraising campaign raised millions of dollars and energized a new wave of research into ALS, commonly known as Lou Gherig's Disease. 

While most challenge fundraisers don't get quite that much traction, they can be a fun way to inspire others to join in giving to charity. 

Pro Tip: Partner with a company that has experience in running challenges, like, which creates challenges by connecting apps that your employees already use. If those don't appeal, consider partnering with a local organization to create and run your own challenge fundraiser using software like the GiveWP blog add-on.

3. Measuring Social Impact — And Sharing!

Is your giving program really making a difference? Measuring social impact is one of the current buzz phrases in the corporate giving world

Donors — that's you and your employees — understandably want to know if the money they donate is actually helping make positive change in the world around them. That means you have to develop a framework to actually measure the results of your corporate giving program. It can be as simple as generating a report of how many dollars were donated, but it can dive much deeper. How many meals did those donations provide? How many people earned a certificate in the class you sponsored? How many miles of beach were cleaned?

Pro Tip: It's not enough just to collect data. The magic happens when you share it with your employees and they're inspired by all that good. The ways to share data are nearly endless, from the time-honored temperature chart to graph donations to before and after photos of community cleanups or buildouts. And if the results aren't quite as inspiring as you'd hoped, you can use them to start a discussion of how to do better next time.

4. Embracing New Ways to Give (Like the Groundswell App!)

If your workplace giving program has been mired in the stodgy depths of legacy corporate giving software, the newest advances in technology will shake up your worldview. 

The newest tech platforms make it easy for employees to make donations, submit requests for matching donations, and track their giving for end-of-year tax reporting. On the employer's end, they provide seamless integration with donation-matching software and provide valuable insights into the causes that matter the most to their employees.

If you haven't done it yet, take a look at the benefits of modernizing your workplace philanthropy flow. 

Pro Tip: Be bold and embrace change. Check out how Groundswell opens up a whole new way of giving for your employees through Personal Giving Accounts, allowing them to make donations when and where they want, without having to jump through a bunch of HR hoops.

5. Empowering Employee Choice

Today more than ever, employees want a voice in how the company donates to charity. They want to work for a business that shares the values they consider important. This is especially true among women and younger employees, as well as among employees who belong to (or know someone who belongs to) marginalized groups. 

Over the past 20 years, corporations have been recognizing this by giving employees more choices in donation match programs, offering volunteer grants to organizations where their employees volunteer, and forming employee working groups to identify causes and organizations to support. 

Pro Tip: Ask your employees what's important to them — and listen carefully. Even better, actually, empower them to create corporate giving policies and programs.

6. Being Nimble in the Face of Current Events

You've heard the expression "may you live in interesting times." The last few years have been the epitome of "interesting times," and they've tested — and revealed the weaknesses — of traditional fundraising and corporate philanthropy models. 

It has meant that businesses have had to adapt their corporate giving to hot-button issues and emergent needs — being prepared to make statements and adjust their philanthropy guidelines to put their giving power behind their mission statements. 

For many organizations, this has meant reevaluating their corporate giving programs and building in more flexibility, both by providing more choice for their employees, and more discretion in spending for the organizations they support. 

Pro Tip: Use local current events and issues as springboards to launch special giving campaigns and events to engage your employees and connect them to the larger community. From clothing drives for families displaced in a fire to volunteer playground cleanups, events that respond to local needs are important drivers of employee engagement.

7. Stakeholder Philanthropy

One of the most powerful emerging trends is stakeholder philanthropy, the practice of inviting all stakeholders — employees, customers, consumers, the community, and partners — to the table when making decisions about charitable donations and corporate giving.

Corporate philanthropy is at its best when everyone involved reaps the benefits, but too often some of the stakeholders are left out of the decision-making. 

A corporate volunteering program may make good press for the company and provide a team-building experience for employees, but saddle a nonprofit with a lot of extra work. A CEO's chosen charity may benefit from a tailored giving program but do little to engage most employees. 

Stakeholder philanthropy helps avoid those common pitfalls and increases the chance that your corporate giving programs will make a tangible impact on your employees and the causes they're most passionate about.

Pro Tip: Poll employees for local organizations they support, and reach out to partner with those organizations to provide maximum impact.

8. Match Giving to Moments That Matter

Moments That Matter is more than a customer relations tool. When your company matches its giving policies to the moments that matter in an employee's life, you're letting them know that you see them, you get them, and you support them. 

Whether you increase your donation match to recognize a new child in the family or reward a department's finished project with a little extra to donate to their Personal Giving Account, you are strengthening the relationship between them and the company, and increasing their satisfaction with work.

Pro Tip: Make moments that matter a key element of your employee benefits and workplace giving programs, and never forget that a personal touch makes a huge amount of difference. The gift will mean even more if it's attached to a note — yes, a real, paper note — of congratulations or acknowledgment.

The Bottom Line

Workplace giving programs are rapidly evolving to meet the expectations and desires of today's workforce. Employees want to work for companies that share and support their values. Offering a workplace giving program that meets their needs is one important way to send the message that you value them as whole people, not just as employees. 

Learn more about how Groundswell makes it easy for your company to set up and manage a corporate giving program that gives your employees the power to make a real impact on their communities.

Related resources

7 mins read
All Posts

Unlocking Philanthropy: A Ready-to-Use Corporate Giving Policy for Modern Businesses

Sample Corporate Giving Policy You Can Use Today

In today’s socially conscious environment, more companies than ever are recognizing the value of corporate philanthropy. Not only can a robust giving policy boost a brand’s image and reputation, but it can also play a pivotal role in community development and global betterment. If your company is considering the establishment of a formal corporate giving policy or refining its existing strategy, this sample policy might be the perfect starting point for you.

Download Sample Policy

Pillars of a Strong Corporate Giving Policy

Corporate giving programs range from employer donation matching programs to full blown corporate social responsibility programs with grantmaking and volunteerism.  Many companies find somewhere in the middle that aligns with their size, budget, geographic presence and most importantly company values and commitment to diversity and inclusion. But what truly makes a corporate giving policy stand out? Let’s delve into the key features, from donation matching to the strategic use of platforms like Groundswell.

1. Donation Matching: Doubling the Impact

One of the most effective tools in a giving policy is donation matching. This is where companies match employee donations to eligible non-profits, effectively doubling the contribution. Such programs not only amplify the impact but also motivate employees to participate, knowing their chosen cause will receive twice the support.

2. Charitable Stipends: Encouraging Employee Choice

Charitable stipends are allowances given to employees to donate to a non-profit of their choice. This not only encourages a culture of giving but also empowers employees to support causes they’re passionate about. The stipends can be a fixed amount annually or can vary based on the employee’s role or tenure.

3. Dollars for Doers: Volunteering Translated to Contributions

“Dollars for Doers” programs convert volunteer hours into monetary donations. When employees volunteer their time for a cause, the company makes a donation equivalent to the hours spent. This fosters a culture of hands-on involvement and ensures that both time and money are being donated to valuable initiatives.

4. Corporate Grants: Sowing Seeds for Bigger Change

Beyond individual employee contributions, companies can set aside a dedicated fund for corporate grants. These grants can be given to non-profits, research initiatives, or community projects that align with the company’s CSR objectives. Such grants can lead to substantial, long-term changes and foster strong partnerships with community leaders and organizations.

Why Choose Groundswell for Your Giving Initiatives?

Incorporating these elements into a giving policy requires streamlined management, transparency, and ease of execution. This is where platforms like Groundswell come into the picture.

Groundswell offers an efficient and affordable solution for companies aiming to elevate their philanthropic endeavors. Here’s why it’s the ideal choice:

  • User-Friendly Interface: Groundswell’s platform is designed for both companies and employees, ensuring smooth navigation and straightforward donation processes.
  • Versatility: Whether it’s donation matching, handling charitable stipends, or managing corporate grants, Groundswell offers solutions tailored to each company’s unique needs.
  • Cost-Effective: Groundswell provides a comprehensive suite of tools at competitive prices, ensuring that more of your money goes towards the cause rather than platform fees.
  • Transparency: Track donations, monitor employee involvement, and generate detailed reports to measure the impact—all in one place.

Request demo


An effective corporate giving policy is a blend of structure, employee engagement, and impactful contributions. By incorporating elements like donation matching, charitable stipends, “Dollars for Doers,” and corporate grants, businesses can create a ripple effect of positive change. And with platforms like Groundswell, executing these initiatives becomes not just feasible but also highly efficient and cost-effective.

Read more
7 mins read
All Posts

5 Tips to Boost Engagement & Impact on Giving Tuesday

Leverage GivingTuesday to boost generosity

Every November, the Tuesday after Thanksgiving is known as GivingTuesday, which often serves as the unofficial start of end-of-year giving campaigns. This comes on the heels of holiday shopping deals on Black Friday, Small Business Saturday, and Cyber Monday. It is a worldwide phenomenon, inspiring millions to lean into the end-of-year holiday spirit with generosity and compassion. For many charities, GivingTuesday has become their biggest day for donations – and can help resource their ability to have an even greater impact in the year ahead.

For companies, GivingTuesday and the end-of-year giving season offers an opportunity to double down on their commitment to social responsibility, strengthen relationships with employees, and boost their impact in the community and broader world.

At Groundswell, we partner with companies all across the country to design and launch GivingTuesday campaigns – leveraging our easy-to-use platform that makes it easy for employees to participate and send donations to the causes and charities that they care most about. Below are some best practices to boost engagement and inspire generosity during the giving season.

1. Make Giving Easy:

A lot of giving platforms out there make it incredibly hard to donate. Some don’t have all 1.5 million IRS-approved charities listed. Others require employees to navigate through a web of intranet or sharepoint sites to find the giving program landing page. And others require that HR is notified of any donations an employee wants to make. At Groundswell – we are committed to removing all of the friction, and ensuring that employees can find charities easily, through a platform that is accessible from the palm of their hand, so they can give whenever they want to.

2. Launch a GivingTuesday Match Campaign:

Through Groundswell you can customize and launch a special GivingTuesday match campaign in a matter of minutes. Simply pick the nonprofits to include in the special campaign, select the start and end-date for the campaign, and then determine the match – 2x, 3x – along with any overall budget limits, then you’re done!

3. Boost engagement by involving ERGs:

Share nonprofit recommendations from Employee Resource Groups to provide inspiration around causes and nonprofits that matter to your employees. You can feature these nonprofits on dedicated ERG Corporate Spotlights and Campaigns that will be visible to all employees on their Groundswell dashboard.

4. Surprise (and Delight) Employees With A Gift to Give:

Consider sending a surprise “gift to give” to reward those already participating in your giving program (and to incentivize others to enroll). These gifts might be used to further maximize impact through the existing campaign, or to donate to other nonprofits your employees care about. Groundswell’s custom gift feature allows companies to easily schedule and send gifts with little to no administrative burden.

5. Level up with Volunteer Matching:

Groundswell’s Volunteer Matching program – sometimes known as Dollars for Doers – recognizes that some employees may not have funds to contribute, but have time – and rewards them in the same way. It’s an inclusive approach that invites everyone to participate in GivingTuesday, even those who may not be able to donate their own funds.

Read more
7 mins read
All Posts
Corporate Philanthropy
Guides & Toolkits
Workplace Trends

12 Employee Benefits Survey Questions Modern Companies Should Ask

In today's business environment, having the right and highest performing talent is more critical than ever. With benefits packages playing a vital role in these decisions, how can companies truly gauge their effectiveness? By initiating regular employee benefits surveys.

Scroll down for a free survey template below.

Let's dive in to the importance of asking the following questions.

Is our workforce satisfied with the current employee benefits package?

Gaining insights from "how satisfied are you with our company’s benefits package?" can offer companies a quick pulse on the effectiveness of their benefits. A dip in satisfaction might signal a need for re-evaluation, especially if you're looking to maximize your budget.

How comprehensive are the employee benefits we offer?

Do employees feel that the organization covers a wide range of their needs? Asking, "do you feel our benefits package is comprehensive in its offering?" can shed light on any potential gaps in coverage.

Are we showing true commitment to Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion through our benefits?

Are the company's efforts in promoting DE&I resonating? This can be gauged by asking if the benefits genuinely support diversity and inclusion. If they aren't, here's an opportunity to collect ideas directly from your employees.

Read more about how to make sure your giving program is equitable and inclusive.

Do our benefits reflect our company culture and values?

The question, "do you feel our benefits package supports our cultural values?" will highlight any potential discrepancies in practicing what you're preaching.

Did you know? Two-thirds of employees say it’s important for a company to align to their values.

Are we catering to the needs of a remote or multi-location workforce?

With remote work on the rise, is the company adapting its benefits accordingly? It's essential to find out if employees feel supported, regardless of their work setting.

Would employees recommend the company based on our benefits?

This is an easy one to skip, but it's a great question to ask. See how influential your benefits package is for employee referrals. Determining if employees would advocate for the company based on its benefits can be a key metric for recruitment.

How do specific benefit categories fare?

By querying satisfaction levels across various benefits – physical health, social impact, mental health, financial health, and fringe benefits – can companies discern which areas are thriving and which need enhancement?

What additional benefits do employees desire?

Is there a particular benefit that could make a difference in employee satisfaction and retention? Discovering this can be as straightforward as asking, "if you could choose one benefit not currently offered, what would it be?"

If your workforce desires a more meaningful benefit, see why decentralizing your corporate philanthropy strategy can achieve greater impact at scale.

How often should I send an employee survey about our benefits?

While every business has their own set of unique needs, conducing a quarterly employee survey at minimum can help you get a pulse check.

There will be some natural and unplanned peaks in valleys throughout the year that can drastically affect employee morale and company culture. By proactively seeking feedback through surveys, companies can foster a culture of continuous improvement, ensuring they remain at the forefront of employee satisfaction.

What are some affordable benefit options we can provide employees?

Corporate matching or giving programs can be a low-cost addition to your benefit offering that supports your employees’ unique passions and perspectives through charitable giving and boosts your company’s commitment to social impact.  Groundswell offers a comprehensive solution with a simple implementation and nearly zero administration burden.

[Free Template] Employee Benefits Survey Questions

  1. How satisfied are you with our company’s benefits package?
  2. Do you feel our benefits package is comprehensive in its offering?
  3. Do you feel our benefits package supports our cultural values?
  4. Do you feel our benefits package supports our commitment to Diversity & Inclusion?
  5. Do you feel our benefits package supports our remote or multi-location workforce?
  6. How likely are you to recommend applying based on our benefits package?
  7. How satisfied are you with our physical health benefits (i.e. health care, sick leave, etc)?
  8. How satisfied are you with our social impact benefits (i.e. corporate matching, volunteering, etc)?
  9. How satisfied are you with our mental health benefits (i.e. vacation time, EAP, etc)?
  10. How satisfied are you with our financial health benefits? (i.e. retirement, student loan assistance, etc)
  11. How satisfied are you with our fringe benefits and perks? (i.e. fitness subsidies, stipends, etc)
  12. If you could choose one benefit not currently offered, what would it be?
Read more