Successful examples of skills-based volunteering–Deloitte
In the previous article, “If you are here to help…grab a shovel?” we talked about the concept of skills-based volunteering and how it can benefit volunteers. To reiterate, skills-based volunteering utilizes individual’s specialized kills and talents to strengthen the infrastructure of nonprofits, helping them build and sustain their capacity to successfully achieve their missions. Now, we will introduce companies that have successfully implemented this system and the first company on the list is Deloitte–one of the Big Four professional services firms that helps clients with issues such as auditing, consulting, financial advisory, and tax.
But before we go in depth about Deloitte’s work, let us briefly discuss about the campaign that enabled many companies to join skills-based volunteering–A Billion + Change. A Billion + change is a national campaign that aims to mobilize billions of dollars of pro bono and skills-based service by 2013. Companies can join to pledge to contribute their skill sets, filling critical gaps in community needs in areas including, but not limited to, financial and legal services, educational and environmental initiatives and programs for veterans ad senior citizens. Currently, the campaign combines companies’ pledge to reach its goal of mobilizing $2 billion to support community organizations. It was first launched in 2008 by the Corporation for National and Community Service and was invigorated in 2011 under the leadership of Senator Mark Warner. The initiative is supported by HP, the Case Foundation, IBM, and of course, Deloitte.
(Here is a complete list of pledged companies up to date:
As a very active member of this campaign, Deloitte has been greatly contributing to the society with its skills-based volunteering.
“While so many nonprofits have sophisticated social missions and programs, they often struggle with the same business challenges as for-profit companies. We believe that the most valuable resource we can contribute to nonprofits is the one we offer our clients everyday—our intellectual capital and business knowledge. Helping nonprofits to become stronger organizations is the most lasting contribution we can make to our local communities.”
– Barry Salzberg, Chief Executive Officer, Deloitte LLP
A snapshot of Deloitte’s skills-based volunteer program composes of following: year-round volunteerism/IMPACT Day, Pro Bono, Board Leadership, Thought Leadership and Problem Solvers Fund. The core project within the program is pro bono work, which has long been a fixture on the Deloitte’s community involvement landscape and is now a key driver of its community involvement strategy. On June 1, 2008, Deloitte launched a pro bono program that provided the resources and infrastructure necessary to support up to $50 million in cross-functional pro bono engagements. Thus pro bono service became a part of the business units’ annual planning and budgeting process, allowing Deloitte to distribute its workforce more efficiently. Compared to the past when the service was only provided on an ad hoc basis, Deloitte became more strategic in project selection. At the same time, Deloitte is also providing the board leadership, the most valuable assets the business community can offer, and problem solvers fund, which provides large-scale grants to support local community initiatives where Deloitte employees are engaged in capacity building, pro bono and other skills-based volunteer projects.
Due to its constant effort to give back to the world, in 2011, United Way Worldwide–a coalition of charitable organizations in the Unite States– honored Deloitte with two Summit awards for volunteer engagement and community impact in education. Deloitte was especially recognized for its dedication to increasing high school graduation rate and advocating college-going culture in America by contributing its employee’s professional skills and knowledge to serve nonprofits through skills-based volunteering and pro-bono work. The Spirit of America and Summit Awards program is United Way’s highest national honor of corporate citizenship, recognizing United Way Global Corporate Leaders with the most comprehensive commitments to strengthening communities. Applicants are evaluated by corporate peers and local United Ways.
“We’re grateful for Deloitte’s continued leadership and longstanding support. They’ve been instrumental in driving progress in education, corporate philanthropy and volunteer engagement,” said Brian Gallagher, United Worldwide president and CEO. “The organization’s strong culture of service, innovative thinking, and unwavering commitment to strengthening communities is making a real impact.”
After years of perfecting its strategy, Deloitte finally has an efficient and highly successful volunteering plan. Deloitte is now promoting other companies to do the same as well. Here is a video of the interview with Evan Hochberg, the national director of community involvement at Deloitte, at the 6th Annual Edelman Change and Employee Engagement Summit.