How to plan sustainable community outreach this spring and beyond
(BPT) - A successful business isn't just about profit. Companies can enhance their reputation and show their commitment to social responsibility through community outreach. Within their community, a business can build trust and credibility with the public while making a positive impact in society by participating in local events, sponsoring community initiatives and supporting social causes.
Community outreach can also have a positive impact on employee engagement and retention. Employees can feel proud of their company's social responsibility efforts and feel more connected to their community. Of course, organizing community outreach opportunities and baking them into a company's culture is easier said than done. One company that has innovated community outreach is award-winning insurtech, Quility.
Quility's internal initiative, The Ripple Model™ provides a roadmap for creating wholehearted culture and delivers support to agents and corporate staff, especially when it comes to community outreach. Here are three tips from The Ripple Model that can help companies organize and execute successful community outreach.
1. Make it part of the workday
It can be difficult for employees to set aside time after work or on the weekends to volunteer in the community. Setting aside a workday or part of a workday for employees to volunteer makes it easier for everyone to participate.
Also, when employees are allowed to volunteer during work hours, they can feel more engaged with their company's values and build a sense of camaraderie among co-workers as they work toward a common goal.
2. Offer multiple opportunities
Companies can make community outreach efforts sustainable by offering frequent, fun and varied opportunities. By providing multiple opportunities with different missions, a company can ensure that all employees have several chances throughout the year and can pick an event that is meaningful to them.
For example, Quility hosted its 2023 Protect the Path event in honor of Earth Day, where corporate staff and agents could help clean up trails in their local communities. More than 250 participants in over 40 U.S. cities participated in this event.
But this isn't the only opportunity employees have to give back to their community. To date, Quility has donated $2.5 million to community partners across the country, granted 165 wishes and donated over $1 million to the Make-A-Wish Foundation, packed over 100,000 meals to fight food insecurity, assisted with nine home restoration projects in partnership with Habitat for Humanity and participated in three international recovery projects. With so many opportunities, employees can get excited about picking one or more to participate in throughout the year.
3. Make sign-up easy
If it's difficult to organize and sign up for a community outreach event, it can be discouraging to staff. They're less likely to participate if getting registered is a hassle. That's why it's critical to have a plan in place with tools to help make the signup process as smooth as possible.
To plan and run sustainable and successful community outreach this year and beyond, companies should invest in creating a platform that facilitates event logistics and signup. Quility, for example, uses its agent and staff portal to help them easily register for outreach opportunities, sign waivers, and provide event information and reminders all in one place. While this does take time and resources, doing so will benefit the employees, the community and the company. Creating a system for outreach shows a company's dedication to continued community engagement that reflects its core values.
"Giving back has been a part of our company since day one," said Whit Zeh, Senior Director of Corporate Well-Being and Community Outreach at Quility. "While a portion of our giving comes in the form of financial support, we also believe philanthropy needs to be more than a check. Outreach must include listening to the needs of our communities and then showing up with our time, our presence and our willingness to be in a relationship."
To learn more about Quility and explore The Ripple Model, visit Quility.com.