Great Communication Delivers Success

From the judges: “Good idea to tap into the competitive spirit amongst employees to build engagement.”

Having started Workplace Giving in 1999, Bain & Company’s program has gone through a number of phases over the years. There were two main drivers for the most recent evolution. Firstly, the management consultancy recognised that the nature of its relatively fluid workforce meant the program needed constant reinforcement. Secondly, following the introduction of an online giving platform in late 2015, internal surveys had revealed there was a lack of understanding of how to use the platform and that the program wasn’t resonating with staff. More communication was needed to win people’s hearts. It was the perfect moment for a re-launch.

The plan had three main elements. The first was to tap into staff’s competitive spirit through office events and intra-department rankings, and to leverage Bain & Company’s unique ‘Dare Month’ fundraising initiative. The second focus area was to improve reporting, from charity partners on the impact of Bain’s donations, as well as sharing the monthly status of Workplace Giving participation rates.The final element of the re-launch was sustained communications with an emphasis on education and awareness. Each weekly newsletter now has a ‘WPG Tip’ such as a profile of a charity orworkplace giver, or functional information about the program.

A network of Workplace Giving champions has been created, comprising of a mix of seniority and functions, and representation in each office. All new staff are automatically ‘opted-in’ to the program (with the choice to withdraw at any time), and receive an in-person session on Workplace Giving as part of their induction. The communications drive has achieved outstanding results with a recent staff survey revealing that ‘lack of awareness / understanding’ as a barrier to joining the program has fallen from 21% in 2015 to 0%. Bain & Company’s re-launch has seen participation in Workplace Giving increase by 11% – to a current total of 62% of staff signed-up.

Over the last year, the Bain staff donated over $120,000 to charities through Workplace Giving, in addition to the numerous volunteering and pro-bono projects the firm participated in. Bain & Company is planning to continue this momentum and has a goal to see 80% of its 260 staff participating in the program.