America's Charities Consolidated Annual Report - page 12

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Charities.
While some charities are developing
strategies to meet these new expectations (27
America’s Charities members have already completed
their Charting Impact profile. See page 18 for a
description of the Charting Impact questions.)
most continue to resist, because they see these
expectations as increased administrative burden.
This is a valid concern particularly since historically
foundations and government grants do not cover the
costs of demonstrating impact (evaluation). Also, most
foundations and government grants do not fund charity
“infrastructure.”
“Employers are already responding
to the new expectations that the
democratization of information has
created.”
However, we are approaching a tipping point (and
may be there by the time of this publication) whereby
resisting these expectations will be counter-productive.
In fact, in an age of reduced and more focused
government support for charities; the democratization
of information about charities via GS, CN, GN and
other digital platforms; and increased donor awareness
and desire to make more informed and impactful
choices; I posit that charities that do not embrace these
new expectations will be at a distinct disadvantage.
Beginning in 2013, America’s Charities began to
provide member charities with tools and resources
to succeed and thrive in this era of increased
expectations. We partnered with BBB WGA, GS,
and IS to engage more charities in the Charity Impact
program. See page 7 for more details.
Employers.
As our
report points out
the Internet, digital media and mobile devices have
changed the way we think, act, and convene. About
54% of employers that America’s Charities recently
surveyed report that their use of technology for their
workplace giving and employee engagement has
changed dramatically in just the past three years. Some
30% said they allow employees to post videos and/
or testimonials in support of their favorite causes while
more than half say the will likely incorporate more social
media tools into their giving programs in the next two
years.
Employers are already responding to the new
expectations that the democratization of information
has created. Employee donors/volunteers expect their
giving and volunteering experience inside the walls
of the workplace to be as robust as what they have
outside the workplace. That means transparency
regarding finances, accountability and governance;
demonstration of effectiveness through storytelling and
increasingly through demonstration of outcomes; and
the use of social media for peer-to-peer engagement.
The implications for charities wanting to benefit from
employee workplace giving and volunteerism are clear
and those that rise to meet these new expectations
will be well positioned both inside and outside the
workplace.
Donors.
As mentioned earlier, many of the digital tools
created in the philanthropic space were originally
designed to meet the information needs of foundations,
corporations, donor advised funds and wealthy
philanthropists seeking deeper and more robust
information in order to make more informed giving
choices. This is where GS, CN and others began back
in the late 1990’s and early 2000’s. As the Internet
democratized information and the digital culture began
increasing expectations for information to be readily
available, donors began to expand their use of all the
tools and resources in the marketplace. Seeing the
demand for this information, more technology firms and
organizations have entered with new programs and
services designed primarily for the donor.
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