There are two main aspects involved in employee fundraising in the UK. The first is why your company or business is fundraising for this particular charity. One of the key motivators here can be a business owner who has direct experience of a need – perhaps an illness or condition that has affected their family and led to them becoming a passionate advocate for a charity that collects funds for research and treatment. Sometimes the process is bottom-up; employees or their children may have suffered an illness, and the firm rallies around to show that they support them by fundraising.
The second aspect is that business owners often realise that getting employees involved in fundraising activities could yield enormous benefits not only for the business in terms of employee engagement and motivation but also for the individual employees who get involved.
Tell the Story to Engage your Employees
When you’re considering asking your employees to raise money for a charity, it can pay dividends to open up and communicate on a personal level with them if you have a story to tell about why this particular charity is important to you. In a very large organisation, the choice of the charity that will get corporate support can be made at a very high level. There is less personal input, and in this case, managers leading the fundraising effort need to explain why they think it’s worth supporting and enthuse the employees.
Once you’ve decided to fundraise and have told your employees why, there are several things you need to think about. One is what kind of activity you will undertake. It’s a good idea to involve as many people as possible. Most businesses have a staff that is diverse in terms of age, gender, interests and fitness, so you don’t want to suggest a fundraising activity that immediately leads most employees to lose interest. Running races or doing half-marathons may be fine for some people, but what about those who aren’t so fit? They may feel excluded.
Get Everyone Involved
Team activities, in which people can contribute different skills, can work very well. Stepping outside work roles can allow some people who currently don’t have much responsibility to show that they can really step up and take it on. Working in a team can allow staff from different parts of the organisation to get to know each other better. For example, if you organise a cake sale, you may find that your quiet, introverted IT technician turns out to be a brilliant baker and provides a luscious black forest gateau.
If you’ve never organised employee fundraising in the UK before, it’s probably not a good idea to start out with a five-star dinner and dance. Start small and build your organisation’s capacity to put on this kind of event. Don’t forget that you can also ask charities to supply ideas. Most of them have lists of ideas for events you could put on, and they’ll usually also supply kits to help with the events.