Organizations are constantly looking for ways to boost employee morale, improve the mental health of their employees and retain and attract top talent in a creative way. One way that is especially relevant in the nonprofit sector is to offer volunteer time off.
Many employees today are mission-driven and looking for more than just a place to collect a paycheck. They want to work for a socially responsible organization aligned with their values and goals. Volunteer time off encourages employees to give their time to charities and the causes they believe in while not worrying about taking unpaid or vacation/personal time off. Determining what type of volunteer time off to provide is completely up to your organization. Smaller organizations may opt for half days or one full day, while larger organizations may give more hours or blocks of time throughout the year. As with any other policy, it should be built around its purpose and be equitable to all staff. Once you determine what kind of time you want to offer, discuss perimeters. Does the length of service of the employee matter? Are there any restrictions on the type of organization the time can be used for?
Organizations can also set up for the entire team to volunteer for a cause together. A good opportunity to do this is on August 17th, National NonProfit Day. It commemorates the Tariff Act, which was signed into law in 1894. This act differentiated corporations from nonprofits and honored the importance of nonprofit work, excluding them from the taxes that corporations must pay. It is now a day to celebrate all the work that nonprofit organizations do for our communities. This can be a great time to focus your efforts as an organization on a cause that is close to your heart.
A significant benefit to organizations that utilize Volunteer time off is the retention of current employees and attracting top talent. Understanding what prospective employees are looking for and highlighting the benefit offered will attract mission-driven, dedicated and dynamic candidates.
Whether you create a Volunteer Time off Policy or offer one day where all employees put their collective efforts towards a good cause, the benefits to your staff are great. You will boost employee mental health, reduce workforce stress, decrease the likelihood of burnout, and help foster relationships with each other.
To help you with the process, we’ve simplified things for you! Download our VTO policy template to get started.
Reach out to the Kiwi Partners HR team as you explore the volunteer time off options that best suit your team.