Continuing the Conversation: No Longer A Vendor 2.0

Dustin Joost June 10, 2015 About YourCause

A few weeks back, our Founder and CEO, Matt Combs, wrote an article titled “No Longer a Vendor” that points out how inadequate the term is for describing a partnership between two organizations, and instead waters the relationship down to nothing more than a transaction. “A vendor,” he writes, “is defined as an entity that provides a commercial service or good to a market segment with very little deference to those they serve.”

The corporate social responsibility space and the people who manage employee giving, volunteering, and sustainability programs, need more than just vendors. They need partners that they can trust to find long-term solutions, ever-evolving technology that’s more than just transactional, and a company whose culture allows for an unprecedented level of flexibility and service.  So, I thought I’d share how we make that happen at YourCause:

We Like Technology, but We Like Helping You Make Your Employees Happy and Make More of an Impact 

It’s a given that we think our employee giving, volunteering, and sustainability software is pretty awesome, but we know that the technology is not the only channel through which you manage your programs. There’s a lot more to employee engagement! And that’s where we really excel. It starts with understanding your culture. As you’ll learn in just a bit, culture means everything to us. And for you, it’s the key driver of your programs – it shapes how your employees interact with our technology, and more importantly, how we interact with your employees. Some clients refer to us as a turnkey corporate social responsibility partner. We’ve got the technology and the people that act as extensions of your team, helping you both manage and grow your programs. We couldn’t do any of that without knowing what makes your organization tick.

Data drives decisions nowadays and we’re sitting on a mountain of it at YourCause – over 7 years’ worth of employee giving and volunteering data to be exact. We could tell you the difference between employee volunteerism in Brazil vs. China. Or the average dollar amount donated in San Francisco vs. New York in the Consumer Packaged Goods vertical. We share that data through a number of channels – monthly online client social hours, regional office hours, annual client conferences, online client forum, and mostly, through our account management and client advocate teams. There’s so much more to this industry than just technology, and we’re filling that void.

Technology Should Not Be a Roadblock to Increasing Participation

The fact that no two corporate cultures are the same means that no two Corporate Social Responsibility programs are the same, and how they’re managed are not the same either. As convenient as it sounds to build out of the box software and just offer it as is, we can’t. Unlike most industries that use SaaS solutions, you can’t just standardize CSR and employee engagement. So, we’ve built our platform to be user friendly enough to support simple programs out of the box, but configurable enough to meet the needs of those programs that are “a little different”.

We’re not done either. Stagnant software is like when you eat the same thing for lunch, for three years straight. You get bored and either stop eating it, or eat it, but dread it every time. Why torture your employees with boring software? Give them something to be excited about! This is giving and volunteering – it needs to look good, function without flaws, and keep evolving, just like consumer technology does.

Everything I Just Said Means Nothing without Culture

We like to think that we’re the kind of place that attracts top-tier talent who can do more than just talk-the-talk, and I think our recent recognition as one of the 100 Best Places to Work in Dallas affirms that. Our culture of entrepreneurship encourages our client services team to truly own their client relationships. Our internal knowledge sharing on industry trends and best practices allows them to take a consultative approach and do more than help manage software. In the end, it’s the people that are responsible for making the relationship that YourCause has with our clients a true partnership. Our job as a management team is to empower them with the tools, the training, and the environment to do so.

We’re not just a vendor. We’re a partner. We’re YourCause.