Nonprofits are always looking for new revenue sources so they can properly support their beneficiaries. Additionally, many of them need a substantial base of volunteers to help them carry out their missions. What if there was a way to secure more funding and volunteers at the same time? Enter Dollars for Doers programs.
In short, Dollars for Doers programs incentivize employee volunteering and help nonprofits gain more for their causes. This guide will cover everything you need to know about Dollars for Doers, including:
- What Is Dollars for Doers?
- How Do Dollars for Doers Programs Work?
- Dollars for Doers and Corporate Volunteerism Statistics
- Top Companies with Dollars for Doers Programs
- Why You Should Invest in Dollars for Doers Software
- How to Promote Dollars for Doers Opportunities
Whether you’ve never heard of Dollars for Doers before or want to refine your existing strategy, this article will explain the importance of Dollars for Doers programs and how your nonprofit can maximize results.
What Is Dollars for Doers?
Dollars for Doers falls under the umbrella of corporate giving. Companies with Dollars for Doers programs give monetary grants to the organizations their employees volunteer with.
If this type of corporate giving initiative sounds familiar to you, chances are you’ve heard it called by a different name. Some companies call their Dollars for Doers programs:
- Volunteer grant programs
- Matching time programs
- Dollar for hour programs
- Grants for time programs
While these programs can have a substantial impact on nonprofit revenue, many nonprofits and volunteers are unaware that these programs exist or that they’re eligible. As a result, nonprofits don’t properly promote these opportunities, and volunteers don’t know to look out for them.
That’s why it’s important that nonprofits, volunteers, and businesses know how Dollars for Doers programs operate and how they can get involved.
How Do Dollars for Doers Programs Work?
No matter what a company calls its Dollars for Doers programs, most follow the same process. The steps include:
- An employee volunteers with their nonprofit of choice.
- The employee requests a Dollars for Doers grant from their employer.
- The employer reviews the request and the volunteer hours logged.
- If approved, the employer contributes to the nonprofit in accordance with their program policy.
What differentiates companies’ Dollars for Doers programs from each other are their policies. Each company has different guidelines regarding the following elements:
- Nonprofit eligibility. Companies can restrict the types of organizations that are eligible for their Dollars for Doers programs. For example, many require nonprofits to have registered 501(c)(3) status with the IRS. Businesses with certain core corporate social responsibility (CSR) values, such as sustainability and disaster relief, may only give Dollars for Doers grants to nonprofits with missions that align with those values. Lastly, companies may outline exclusions from their volunteer grant programs, such as political organizations.
- Employee eligibility. While some companies think all employees, past or present, should be eligible to participate in their Dollars for Doers program, others restrict their programs to only current employees. Additionally, companies may choose whether or not they want to include part-time employees.
- Minimum volunteer hours. The minimum number of volunteer hours employees must log can vary greatly from company to company. Some companies opt to instead have employees reach a certain hours threshold and contribute a flat donation.
- Grant amount. Whether companies contribute to nonprofits based on volunteer hours or once employees pass a volunteer hour threshold, they need to determine a set grant amount. For companies that donate per hour their employees volunteer, 80% contribute between $8-$15 per volunteer hour.
- Submission deadlines. To ensure employees know when to submit their requests, companies set submission deadlines in their Dollars for Doers program policies. Some choose the end of the calendar year as their deadline while others pick a certain date that requests must be in by.
requirements public so that nonprofits can encourage their volunteers to check their eligibility and submit requests.
Dollars for Doers and Corporate Volunteerism Statistics
With a clear understanding of how matching time programs work, you now may be wondering about their impact on nonprofits. We’ve compiled some statistics to show you the potential these initiatives have for immense nonprofit support:
- 40% of Fortune 500 companies offer Dollars for Doers programs. This figure puts Dollars for Doers in second place for the most popular form of corporate giving, right behind matching gifts. These companies prioritize corporate giving that heavily involves their employees and allows them to amplify their positive impact on their favorite causes.
- The average corporate volunteer participation rate is 33%. With about a third of the workforce participating in corporate volunteer programs, there is massive potential for nonprofits to obtain more funding. All corporate volunteers have to do is check their eligibility for volunteer grants and submit a request to their employer.
- About 63 million Americans volunteer each year. This statistic indicates that it’s not getting people to volunteer that’s the issue; it’s spreading awareness about Dollars for Doers opportunities. Think about the potential revenue nonprofits could generate if each eligible volunteer participated in their company’s Dollars for Doers program.
- The 7.7 billion volunteer hours Americans contribute annually equate to approximately $175 billion. The inherent value of Americans’ volunteer time is about $175 billion. With volunteer grants, that value increases exponentially.
It’s clear that Dollars for Doers programs offer benefits to nonprofits in both donation revenue and volunteer help. But what about companies? Why would they create these programs in the first place? These statistics illustrate the benefits of corporate volunteer programs and CSR in general:
- 64% of employees claim that volunteering with coworkers has strengthened their work relationships. Team building activities outside the workplace strengthen work relationships and performance at work. Volunteering gives coworkers a common goal that they can conquer together, increasing team cohesion.
- 70% of employees think corporate volunteerism is a more effective morale booster than other company-sponsored activities like happy hours. Companies are always looking to improve employee engagement. While some may opt for social outings as an engagement strategy, many employees prefer volunteering.
- Employees who work for purpose-driven companies have 20% longer expected tenures and 64% higher levels of job fulfillment. Employee retention is a major challenge for employers everywhere. Employees who work for purpose-driven companies feel empowered to not just complete their work but also make the world a better place while they do so. As a result, these employees are more likely to be committed to their jobs and stick around.
- 77% of customers look to purchase from companies that contribute to the greater good. It’s not enough these days to just sell a high-quality product or service. To appeal to consumers, companies need to prove they’re using their power and profits for social good.
- 65% of people want to work for a company with strong CSR initiatives in place. Ultimately, people want to take pride in their workplace and know their employers are committed to helping others. CSR initiatives like Dollars for Doers programs help attract job applicants who want to make a difference.
Dollars for Doers programs benefit everyone involved, including nonprofits, companies, employee volunteers, and customers. As long as more companies create these programs and more nonprofits promote them, they can continue to provide value for all.
Top Companies with Dollars for Doers Programs
Want to know which companies support nonprofits through Dollars for Doers programs? Check out a few of the top companies that offer this incredible opportunity:
Through its Employee Giving program, Apple has raised over $880 million, and its employees have logged over 2 million volunteer hours.
In fact, Apple employees are such active volunteers that the company has formed special connections with charitable organizations. For example, so many Apple employees volunteer at Field of Dreams, a nonprofit in Ireland, that their care coordinator Debbie Kelleher claims, “We now have Apple volunteers here almost every Friday — we call them Apple Fridays.”
Apple pairs its corporate volunteer efforts with donations. Through its Dollars for Doers program, Apple contributes $25 per volunteer hour logged to nonprofits. Apple’s program is especially accessible because they have no minimum hour requirement, allowing any employee who volunteers in any capacity to participate.
Apple employees can log their volunteer hours and request volunteer grants through Apple’s CSR platform.
The Disney VoluntEARS Grants program allows employees and cast members to request Dollars for Doers grants for the nonprofits they volunteer with. Since the program’s inception in 1983, Disney’s VoluntEARS have volunteered about 13 million hours. Additionally, Disney has contributed about $23 million in Dollars for Doers grants over the past decade.
Most of Disney’s volunteer efforts focus on helping kids in need. Whether that’s through packaging donated school supplies or knitting handmade blankets for children’s hospitals, Disney VoluntEARS are committed to equipping kids everywhere with the resources they need.
Once Disney VoluntEARS devote their time to their favorite causes, they can request an “EARS to You” grant for the nonprofits they volunteer with. Disney contributes a set grant to organizations depending on the number of hours a volunteer logs:
- 10-24 hours = $100 grant
- 25-49 hours = $250 grant
- 50-74 hours = $500 grant
- 75-149 hours = $1,000 grant
- 150+ hours = $2,000 grant
For especially committed volunteers, Disney presents “VoluntEARS of the Year” grants of $2,500 to the volunteers’ nonprofits of choice.
Microsoft proudly displays on its website that its employees volunteered 720,000 hours in 2022, which is equal to 82 years’ worth of time. The company also hosts its annual Giving Campaign in October to encourage corporate giving.
A unique aspect of Microsoft’s volunteer program is its pro bono services. For example, the Microsoft legal department and volunteers donate their time to help organizations such as Kids in Need of Defense and the Afghan Asylum Initiative.
In terms of Dollars for Doers, Microsoft contributes $25 per volunteer hour to eligible nonprofits with no minimum hour requirement. Like Apple, Microsoft uses a CSR platform where employees can log their volunteer hours and submit grant requests. Through corporate giving initiatives like Dollars for Doers, Microsoft employees contributed $255 million in 2022 to over 32,000 nonprofits.
Why You Should Invest in Dollars for Doers Software
Facilitating Dollars for Doers opportunities shouldn’t take up too much of your nonprofit team’s time. That’s why there are software solutions dedicated to helping charitable organizations maximize revenue from these programs and other similar corporate giving methods.
Investing in Dollars for Doers software allows your organization to:
- Raise awareness for Dollars for Doers opportunities. The biggest barrier to Dollars for Doers participation is a lack of awareness. The right software solution embeds directly into your website so volunteers can easily access it. Then, volunteers can use the platform’s corporate giving database to find if their employer offers volunteer grants and easily submit a grant request.
- Earn more money for your cause. The more people that know about Dollars for Doers opportunities, the more you can raise for your cause. Plus, corporate giving platforms make it easy for volunteers to send request forms to their employer without ever leaving your website. As a result, you’ll have more Dollars for Doers grants seen to completion.
- Incentivize volunteers to continue lending their support. Volunteers will be thrilled to know that their time dedicated to your nonprofit can also be turned into donations for your cause. Keep volunteers coming back by allowing them to seamlessly submit Dollars for Doers requests and maximize their support for your nonprofit.
- Analyze key giving metrics. Once volunteers start using your Dollars for Doers platform, it will generate data you can implement into your fundraising approach. For example, you may notice that a large percentage of your volunteers work for IBM. This data may empower you to reach out to IBM, letting them know their employees are passionate about your cause and asking if there’s an opportunity for a more formal partnership.
360MatchPro is the top Dollars for Doers platform. With over 24,000 companies represented, volunteers can easily find their employer, determine their Dollars for Doers eligibility, and send a request.
How to Promote Dollars for Doers Opportunities
Besides your software solution itself, there is a variety of other ways you can promote these opportunities to your volunteers. We recommend using a combination of the following methods:
- Your website. Your website is the central location for everything supporters need to know about your nonprofit. Make sure you have a “Ways to Give” page that features Dollars for Doers so people can learn more about these types of programs.
- Email newsletter. If you already feature volunteer opportunities in your newsletter, try adding information about volunteer grants in that section. Explain that volunteers can work with their employers to contribute to your nonprofit at no additional cost to the volunteers themselves.
- Social media. Run a social media campaign dedicated to Dollars for Doers. Be sure to include photos of your volunteers in action and information on how to use your Dollars for Doers software solution.
- Direct mail. Sometimes, having a physical reminder of your nonprofit and its programs can inspire supporters to take action. The next time you send direct mail, include an insert about Dollars for Doers grants that links to the page on your website where you’ve embedded your Dollars for Doers tool.
- Paid search ads. Did you know that nonprofits can access $10,000 in free ad spending per month through the Google Ad Grants program? Once you’ve applied to the program and set up your account, you can leverage Google Ads to market Dollars for Doers opportunities and increase your reach to people outside your current supporter base.
By combining the power of corporate giving software with an effective marketing strategy, your nonprofit can truly maximize revenue from volunteer grants, earning more for your beneficiaries.
Dollars for Doers programs are the ultimate corporate giving opportunity for nonprofits with a strong volunteer base. Not only can nonprofits incentivize volunteering, but they can also earn exponentially more for their causes.
Want to learn more about Dollars for Doers programs and how to take advantage of them? Check out the following resources:
- Corporate Volunteer Grants: The Basics & How to Secure Them. Dive deeper into Dollars for Doers grants, also called volunteer grants, with the help of this guide.
- Top 10 Volunteer Grant Companies: Increase Corporate Dollars. Wondering which companies are the best for Dollars for Doers grants? Check out this article to determine which businesses you should reach out to for more support.
- A Complete Guide to Volunteer Recruitment: 12 Key Strategies. Dollars for Doers grants aren’t possible without volunteers. Learn tips for how to recruit more volunteers and maximize revenue from Dollars for Doers programs.