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Canadians throw their support behind socially responsible businesses

18 November 2019 at 12:31 pm
Luke Michael
A new report says Canadians are deeply loyal to companies that are connected to the community

Luke Michael | 18 November 2019 at 12:31 pm


Canadians throw their support behind socially responsible businesses
18 November 2019 at 12:31 pm

A new report says Canadians are deeply loyal to companies that are connected to the community

Half of Canadian workers considered their employer’s reputation for charitable and community work before accepting their position, according to new research.

National charity Imagine Canada’s survey – of more than 1,500 private sector employees and 65 Canadian companies – found that high community engagement led to long-term business advantages.

Close to nine in 10 (86 per cent) employees who believed their company was highly committed to the community said they were “extremely or very likely” to stay in their job for the next two years.

Half (50 per cent) said their employer’s charitable reputation was a factor in accepting their position there, while 28 per cent said they were willing to take a pay cut to work for a more socially responsible business.

Bruce MacDonald, Imagine Canada’s president and CEO, said the report sent a nuanced message.

“Employees who believe their company is genuinely committed to community are more likely to stay; more likely to be loyal; more likely to share common purpose and more likely to recommend their company to others,” MacDonald said.

“But the research also shows businesses don’t get these benefits unless community investment is done well.

“The commitment to creating social value must be authentic and deeply embedded in a corporation’s DNA. Dabbling in donations won’t influence employees.”

The research also showed there was major potential for growing employee giving in Canada.

For employees working at companies with donation matching and giving campaigns, 79 per cent said they donated to charity compared to 47 per cent for those with no workplace donation programs.

Close to four in five (76 per cent) employees also said they regularly supported a charity they learned about at work.

MacDonald said socially committed business and employees would help Canadian charities deal with the growing demand for their essential services over the next decade.

“Visionary corporate leaders need to recognise community investment as the means to attract the workforce of tomorrow and take their commitment to community to the next level,” he said.

“This would be a win-win for business and the millions of Canadians reliant on the services of charities and nonprofits.”

The full report can be seen here.

Luke Michael  |  Journalist  |  @luke_michael96

Luke Michael is a journalist at Pro Bono News covering the social sector.

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