Australian Companies: Who has the Best Employee Volunteering?

It’s no news that Corporate Social Responsibility activities not only help communities but also benefit the companies taking time to improve the environment and communities they perform in. Studies show employees are happier and more productive when the company they work for makes a point of working not only for profit, but for a cause.

Nowadays customers – especially millennials – are willing to pay more for a service or even change service providers when a company gives back to society in some way. More and more brands, products and services are seen as an expression of who one is and it is important for people to know that companies share their values. And this doesn’t happen only when people decide what to consume but also who to work for.

While some companies struggle with their CSR, others lead the way in changing the world. We have gathered a few examples of how a corporation can encourage its employees to give their time and effort towards a cause – making them happier, more productive and making the world a better place.

  • Rio Tinto Group: The group encourages employees to take up to two paid volunteer days per year – given that they are full time employees; that the charity organisation’s values are consistent with those of Rio Tinto Group’s; and that dates are organised and planned with each employee’s supervisor.

  • Bankwest: The Australian bank encourages all of their employees – full-time, part-time, fixed-term and casual workers – to take part in their Volunteering Program. It allows them 8 hours of paid leave per year, and it requires each line manager to access risks and approve volunteering activities for each employee.

  • Deloitte Australia: The Australian division of the consulting giant has a program designed to aid employees to give back to society. It allows them one volunteering day leave per year as well as two hours paid blood donor leave each quarter.

  • Squire Sanders: The international legal practice has a broad Community Investment Program that goes from Pro-Bono legal work for organisations such as the RSPCA, to investing in a Youth Arts Foundation, organising mentoring and other high school programs, and also, allowing employees one day of paid volunteer leave per calendar year.

  • Woodside: Employees of the petroleum company are given twelve hours of paid volunteer leave per year. Volunteer opportunities are sourced externally from national and regional volunteering bodies.

To celebrate the companies and individuals joining in this global trend of generosity, Volunteering Australia Inc., the country’s body for volunteering activities, hosts an annual National Volunteering Week. This year’s happens from 9 to 15 May, and it carries the theme ‘Give Happy, Live Happy’, introduced in 2015 to support and explore research around the subject.

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