Company Trends

5 corporate philanthropy trends to embrace in 2022

Top social impact trends that will shape strategies of employers in the coming year

These days, employees are more transient, tech-savvy, and socially and environmentally conscious than their predecessors. As generational shifts bring more Gen Z and millennials into the workforce, and we witness a change in employee preferences regarding the role companies should play in society, philanthropy and volunteering programs have become an increasingly prominent part of the workplace. In fact, more than 70% of employees demand social responsibility from companies. Additionally, over 93% believe that organizations must lead with purpose.

It’s clear that employees want to be part of philanthropic activities at work — whether they volunteer for a cause online, or simply donate a small portion of their paycheck. 55% of employees have reported that they would rather work for a socially responsible organization, even if it meant having a lower income. Additionally, consumers are looking forward to doing business with organizations that care. Doug Conant, founder and CEO of Conant Leadership, once stated, “to win in the marketplace, you must first win in the workplace.”

Research from America’s Charities Snapshot Employee Donor Research report indicates that over 71% of employees claim that it’s imperative or extremely important to work in a company where culture is supportive of volunteering and giving. Employees who believe that their company is on the right track are:

  • 2 times more likely to be engaged at work
  • 3.1 times more likely to be satisfied at work
  • 5.6 times more likely to trust company leadership
  • 3.6 times more likely to recommend talent from their network

With 51% of employees feeling disengaged at work, it's no surprise that the era of “The Great Resignation” is upon us. Today, retaining employees is tough — attracting top-tier talent is even harder. It’s crucial for companies to participate in social impact issues if they want to been seen as responsible in the eyes of their customers and the modern workforce. Here are the top five philanthropy trends that should be included in your 2022 CSR strategy:

Peer-to-peer fundraising

Peer-to-peer fundraising is a multi-tiered approach to fundraising that is popular amongst companies of all sizes. Over $900 million was raised by the top 30 peer-to-peer fundraising pages in 2020 — that represents an incredible amount of impact. By allowing your employees to create their own fundraising pages to generate support for a cause they care about, they’ll become more passionate about the campaign and encourage individuals outside of the workplace to get involved. At the same time, they’ll feel like they are part of something bigger.

Many companies already use peer-to-peer fundraising to amplify their voice and reach campaign supporters outside of their organization, which considerably expands their network. After all, 39% of Americans have reported that they’ve donated to charity or a cause based on requests from their friends or family members. Without question, peer-to-peer campaigns are an effective way to engage employees and create impact in communities near and far.

Donation matching

Donation matching is a great way to inspire team members to contribute financially to a nonprofit cause. In fact, 84% of employees are more likely to donate if a match is offered. Additionally, one in every three employees say that they are likely to give more if their donation is matched by their employer. With match donations, you can demonstrate your company's commitment to being socially responsible, which will lead to higher employee and customer engagement, increased customer and employee acquisition and retention rates, and more. The benefits are endless.


These days, we’re witnessing employers engaging their employees by hosting online auctions, where they can bid on items and experiences like a tropical vacation, tickets to a cultural event, or a relaxing day at the spa.

Auctions are a great way to generate a buzz around the office and increase the participation rates of your social impact initiatives. Give employees a sneak peek of desirable auction items and reveal starting bid amounts to build excitement. Don’t forget the charitable component! Announce that you'll be donating all proceeds from the auction to the nonprofit chosen by your staff — employees will be more likely to bid on high-priced items if they know their hard-earned dollars are supporting a good cause.


GiveCards are a brilliant new workplace engagement strategy that companies can use to show their employees and relevant stakeholders appreciation by engaging them in social good. With GiveCards, companies create a charitable budget that is divvied up and dispersed to select recipients. GiveCard recipients redeem their card by donating its monetary value to a vetted nonprofit of their choice.

This workplace giving tool can be used to celebrate holidays, recognize work milestones, or reward top-performing members of your team. To date, GiveCards have produced engagement rates that are 3 times higher than industry standard workplace giving campaigns. A democratized approach to corporate philanthropy is a trend you certainly don’t want to miss out on.

Customer loyalty programs

According to research by Hall and Partners, up to 66% of a brand's profits might rely on effective customer engagement. Engaging customers can help businesses build long-lasting relationships, boost customer loyalty, increase customer retention, streamline purchase cycles, and more.

One of the best ways to engage customers these days is by developing a social impact loyalty program. 57% of customers would love nothing more than to donate to a social cause when prompted by a brand. At the same time, over 87% of consumers support companies that advocate for issues they care about. Upon running such programs, brands can:

  • differentiate themselves from their competitors
  • understand their customers’ values
  • boost customer retention and revenue
  • team up with customers to shape the future

For example, Sephora, a French multinational retailer of personal care and beauty products, has raised over $2 million to date via their charity rewards program. The program encourages customers to turn their Sephora Beauty Insider Rewards Bazaar points into charitable donations. Each month, Sephora features a different Canadian nonprofit organization that customers can support by redeeming their Insider Rewards points. Sephora’s “commitment to driving meaningful change to foster a more diverse, inclusive, and empowered community” has allowed them to connect with their customers in the most meaningful way to date.

As mentioned before, we live in a world where the majority of young professionals prefer to work for a responsible company. For that reason, it’s important for companies to provide a purposeful work environment and support important social causes. Capitalizing on these corporate philanthropy trends will not only help you engage your employees and cultivate the loyalty of customers, but also shape a better world.

Make 2022 your company's most impactful year yet.