Corporate Volunteers Shine
20 May 2015 at 9:37 am
Employees of banking giant NAB have delivered one million volunteer hours to community organisations across Australia, announced as part of National Volunteering Week celebrations.
The employees have clocked up one million hours since NAB implemented its employee volunteering program 17 years ago.
“With NAB employees each having at least 16 hours a year to dedicate to volunteering during work hours, hundreds of communities across Australia have benefited from general and skilled volunteers helping to drive social change and positive community outcomes,” NAB’s Head of Community Engagement Rebecca Kotow said.
“From planting trees, serving meals, manning op shops and nursing sick animals through to providing human resources, marketing, accounting and business expertise, the NAB Volunteering Program is driven by community needs.
“And with a commitment to reach 1 million hours of voluntary work by 2018, the bank is three years ahead of its target with what is widely recognised as a leading corporate volunteering program in Australia.
“Full credit to our employees in making our volunteering program a huge success. We believe that volunteers can provide invaluable assistance to build capacity within community organisations and deliver critical work in the community.
“Whether community organisations need general or skilled volunteers, individuals or groups, our leading employee volunteering program flexes to fit their needs.”
In the 2014 financial year, NAB employees volunteered 20,284 days, the equivalent of $8.2 million value to Australian communities. Kotow said the program is experiencing year on year growth of 20 per cent this financial year.
Volunteer Tasmania was also proud to recognise the work of its tireless supporters at the end of Volunteer Week and used the opportunity to remind the community that while volunteers may give their time without any financial reward, they still need something in return for their efforts and to feel valued in the workplace.
“We advocate really getting to know your volunteers and understand what they would like to gain from their work. Many volunteers do what they do because they are attracted to the cause of an organisation, or alternatively, because they are interested in learning new skills," Adrienne Picone, CEO of Volunteering Tasmania said.
“Their motivation behind volunteering will guide how you can best provide them with meaningful feedback and recognition.
“Whether it is through words, actions, certificates or involvement in planning, tell volunteers the difference they make.”
Volunteering Tasmania also has advice for those concerned their volunteers aren’t engaged.
“Ask them about their preferred communication style. Be prepared to be creative in the way that you both provide and receive information, and don’t shy away from less traditional channels like social media, if that’s what your volunteers want,” Picone said.
“At the core of every great volunteer experience is the power of choice. The need for organisations to get quality results on limited resources can mean that they feel pressured to hold onto their volunteers. The most effective programs take a volunteer’s needs into account and allow them flexibility to leave at any time.
“If you love them, you need to be prepared to let them go, knowing that the door is always open.”