Workplace Giving is on the Rise But Still has Room to Grow
Wednesday, 18th May 2016 at 8:41 am
Workplace giving is continuing to grow but has still not “lived up to its promise”, according to a new analysis.
The 2016 Koda Capital Australian Giving Snapshot, which analysed the latest annual giving statistics released by the Australian Taxation Office (ATO), revealed the number of employees using Workplace Giving rose 10.7 per cent to $31 million between 2012/13 and 2013/14.
A total of 4.7 per cent of employees who were offered workplace giving took it up, representing 156,289 individuals, with the number of employees offered workplace giving also rising by 8.5 per cent.
However more than 3.1 million employees who were offered workplace giving did not choose to take it up.
David Knowles, partner and head of philanthropy and social capital at Koda Capital said the results were pleasing but there was still a lot of room to grow.
“Pleasingly in 2013/14, donations to charity through workplace giving increased 10.7 per cent to $31 million. Yet, participation rates for employers and employees alike remain low, with improvement prospects seeming to hinge on the success of new technology platforms that promise to better connect donors and supported charities.
“Workplace giving is widely viewed as an effective way to grow Australian giving, yet despite a concerted effort by employers, providers and philanthropists, it has to a large extent failed to live up to its promise.”
Knowles said one of the challenges facing workplace giving was the connection between the recipient charity and giver.
“Historically, for this reason, it has been difficult for charities to engage donors and demonstrate impact. We believe successful fundraising is built around relationships, trust and demonstrating effectiveness,” Knowles said.
“For workplace giving to grow, we believe programs must be developed that facilitate much better connectivity and communication between donors and charities. A significant amount of time and money is being invested in infrastructure and new providers are entering the space in an attempt to tackle this issue.”
Koda highlighted some “ingredients to success” for workplace giving including; improving the relationship between charity and donor, allowing donors to easily roll over arrangements when they change employers, making it as simple as possible for new employees to sign up to workplace giving, creating workplace giving champions within organisations, encouraging corporate executives to lead by example, continuing to encourage employers to match employee gifts up to an agreed amount, making it easy for small-to-medium enterprises to introduce workplace giving programs and introducing tax-incentives for employers who offer matched giving programs.
Overall, the snapshot revealed Australians increased their tax-deductible giving by 11.7 per cent to $2.6, driven by increased contributions to Private Ancillary Funds (PAFs) and Public Ancillary Funds (PuAFs) along with workplace giving.
In total, Australians claimed over $2.6 billion in deductible gifts in 2013/14.