Corporate Pro Bono Programs are Growing in Impact

Guest May 22, 2018 Employee Engagement

Dr. Linda Gornitsky, President of LBG Associates, just completed her most recent study. She was kind enough to share her latest work with the YourCause team and write a guest blog focusing on the impact of Pro Bono research.


According to a new research report from LBG Associates and LBG Research Institute, corporate pro bono programs are evolving and becoming more impactful than ever.

The report, “Pro Bono Today: What’s New, What’s Working,” is the result of in-depth interviews with a dozen companies that have strong pro bono programs and some of their nonprofit partners. Some of the key findings are:
 

Talent Development is Teaming Up with Citizenship to Maximize Employee Impact

 

HR professionals are becoming more involved in which employees are selected for pro bono service, particularly for loaned employee engagements. They are realizing that the unique skill- and leadership-development properties of pro bono can be harnessed and directed to the needs of the individual employee. Besides identifying high-potential employees for these plum pro bono assignments, HR and managers are defining the development goals for each employee and tracking whether they have been achieved. “At the close of loaned employee and other high-intensity pro bono projects, the volunteers are meeting with HR and their managers to determine how their new skills can be applied to their regular jobs,” said Linda B. Gornitsky, Ph.D., president of LBG Associates, in an interview with YourCause. “Ten years ago you would not have seen that happening.”

A graphic from LBG Associates and LBG Research Institute’s 2018 report, “Balancing Pro Bono Supply and Demand: Challenges and Solutions from the Nonprofit Point of View.”

 

“Pro Bono for All” is Gaining in Popularity

 

A number of the companies in the study are embracing the “pro bono for all” philosophy and expanding their programs to include more employees and more nonprofits. Because not every nonprofit is ready for an intensive pro bono project (and not every employee is ready to serve on one either), some companies have put together a portfolio of pro bono programs varying in time commitment and intensity. Nonprofits and employees not quite ready for a big strategic project can still do pro bono through short-term engagements like one-day or half-day marathons.

 

Impact Measurement is Growing

 

Internally, companies are paying more attention to setting and evaluating development goals for employees who do pro bono. As for the nonprofits, some companies in the study are doing more than surveying nonprofits just once post-project. They are surveying them as far out as three years to determine the short- and long-term impacts the project had on the organization.

 

There are a lot more findings in the report. Visit our site for a free copy or email Linda Gornitsky at linda@lbg-associates.com.