Procurement · 19 December 2019

How tech can help businesses get the most out of their charitable giving

business charity

it’s that time of year again; advent calendars are starting to appear in shops, Christmas party emails are circulating, and people are feeling charitable. How can businesses ensure that they get the most out of their charitable giving this festive period (and into the new year and beyond)?

The responsibility usually falls upon corporate social responsibility (CSR) teams or to individuals in other departments such as marketing and HR who frequently find the task to be an overwhelming burden with the result that businesses often give to the same big-name charities each year rather than to one of the just over 65, 000 small charities in England and Wales with an annual income of less than 10, 000.

What difference would your charitable funding would make to one of those?

What CSR teams should consider

There are four key questions CSR teams, or those with this responsibility, should consider as they build out their charitable giving plans:

  • how valued their charitable activities are by their customers and employees
  • if they’re compatible with their brand image
  • whether they’re supportive of local charities and good causes
  • if the funds will be used effectively
However, in reality, the arduous administration processes involved in finding small charities to give donations to and managing multiple donations often make the ease of giving a lump sum to a single large charity more appealing.

Making sure your business and the charity fit

Our own research found that more than a third (34%) of managers responsible for CSR or charitable giving within their organisation said that the most difficult challenge they faced when trying to check that the charity(ies) their firm supports are the right ones for them, is finding detailed information about each individual charity and their fundraising projects.

Furthermore, 29% of respondents said that a lack of transparency was a significant challenge and an equal number said that the information about relevant charitable projects was not easily accessible in one place.

The drive is clearly there for businesses to branch out in terms of who they support, so where do they fall short?

Lack of information…

Often complicated websites and application forms create a barrier that, combined with a lack of information, means that these under-resourced employees often give up looking beyond the most well-known charitable brands.

On average, managers reported that just 24% of internal CSR resourcing is devoted to the administrative side of charitable giving and fundraising for their organisation.

Technology can help resource-poor organisational CSR teams and time-limited employees to easily, proactively and collaboratively find, support and manage the most relevant charitable projects for their business.

Two thirds (66%) of managers surveyed use standard office tools such as spreadsheets to help them manage their charitable CSR programmes and only 1 in 20 (5%) use an in-house, CSR fund management/fundraising platform.

There is scope for a greater uptake of platform use – by using an online platform, businesses can streamline the donation process and collaborate with other charitable grantmakers to pool funds, making a real difference and having a greater impact within the charitable sector. Some platforms allow users to offer match funding (one pound added to every pound raised).

Incentivise your employees

This incentivises employees to undertake more charitable fundraising activities to raise more money faster whilst the technology takes care of the matching and cultivates the collaborative nature of giving.



Ed uses his 11 years? experience in the British Army & subsequent cloud technology background to run day-to-day operations whilst building the nationwide network of users to needed to drive the ongoing success of the organisation. Ed is committed to bringing technology-led innovation to the sector, transforming current giving & fundraising processes to close the critical service funding gap and ensuring that much needed funds reach the charities that really need them. With four young children, Ed doesn?t have much spare time, but if he does have any, you?ll find him playing cricket, golf or yacht and dinghy sailing.

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