Hey, Over Here! The Best Place to Discuss Volunteering & CSR

We might be biased. But we LOVE our blog. Volunteering is CSR is a challenge to companies to include volunteerism as a prominent part of their corporate social responsibility – because it pays off in so many ways.

But you know what Screenshot of Volunteering & Corporate Social Responsibility LinkedIn Groupelse we love? Lively conversation about best practices, news, and events around volunteering and CSR. Join the LinkedIn group exclusively for CSR professionals like you – people interested in the role volunteerism plays in a robust CSR program.

Don’t miss out! Dive into the discussion with fellow CSR professionals and thought leaders today. See you there – we can’t wait to hear what you have to say.

(While you’re at it, follow VM Solutions’ LinkedIn page for event announcements, CSR stories, white papers, and more.)

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New Time-Saving Features = More Time to Volunteer!

Incorporating volunteerism into your corporate social responsibility program has never been easier. Why? VolunteerMatch recently rolled out new features to our existing tools. We’ve made things simpler and stronger so your company can volunteer better.

Here’s a roundup of the new features:

Updated skills library.

Screen Shot of How to Select Skills

We love that skilled and pro bono volunteering continues to gain momentum, which is why we created this feature. Matching the list of user skills on LinkedIn, you can now post projects, collect data and calculate impact based on specific volunteer skills. For example, do you want to know how many hours your employees donated using their design skills? Done.

Fewer pages and clicks to get to what really matters: Connecting good people with good causes.
Less hassle online means more volunteer time for you and your employees. VolunteerMatch has simplified processes and streamlined our layout so it’s easier and quicker to navigate through our tools and to post volunteer projects.

Third-party contacts to manage relationships with partner organizations.
Add contacts to your VolunteerMatch Solutions site from outside your company, such as your nonprofit partners, and manage all your volunteer-related relationships in one space.

More flexible project types, such as virtual and ongoing.

Launch Screen Shot 2

Technology is constantly increasing the number of volunteer projects that can be done virtually. Give your employees that added flexibility by entering virtual projects, as well as projects that don’t require a specific date and time.



Stay tuned for a soon-to-be released demo showcasing these new features and more. In the meantime, check out more features of our employee engagement platform.

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On #GivingTuesday, Take Your Volunteer Impact to the Next Level

Today is #GivingTuesday. Step up your volunteer impact by donating to VolunteerMatch.Today is #GivingTuesday, a day dedicated to giving back. Today, millions come together to focus on one thing: giving money, time, skills and passion to help make the world a better place.

At VolunteerMatch, though, we know that many of you focus on this type of thing all year round. Whether it’s through your company’s volunteer programs, or volunteering you do on your own time and with family, you know what it means to make a difference for what you care about most.

So today, on #GivingTuesday, we want to show you how to take things to the next level. This year, we’re reaching out to our network and asking you to donate to VolunteerMatch.

Donate to VolunteerMatch and help create more superheroes.Why? Great question! Because VolunteerMatch is a nonprofit, just like where you volunteer your time. Each donation we get helps millions more people find ways to make a difference. (In fact, our unique work with companies helps close to 100,000 organizations connect with skilled volunteers.)

We’re participating in the CrowdRise Giving Tower Holiday Challenge this year to build a tower of donations that reaches higher than any existing building in the world!

So please click here to donate to VolunteerMatch, and then you can click here to download the app and view the Tower being built in real time.

With your help, we can create a network of volunteer superheroes that will make anything possible – even a tower to the moon!

Click here to donate to VolunteerMatch.

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VolunteerMatch’s Engagement Team Just Got Stronger

Tess Srebro - VolunteerMatch's Newest Employee

Tess Srebro, VolunteerMatch’s Lead Generation and Marketing Associate

The following post is by Tess Srebro, VolunteerMatch’s newest employee. Please join us in welcoming Tess to the team!

When fantasizing about my dream job, I pinpointed a few non-negotiable qualities it would possess.

First, I needed a nonprofit. After spending two years earning a Master’s of Nonprofit Leadership at Seattle University, that was a given. But it couldn’t be just any nonprofit – I sought one whose mission was centered around technology. I believe there’s so much untapped potential for technology to contribute to social good. VolunteerMatch uses technology to connect good people and good causes. Check.

Second, I needed to write. A love of language has been a core part of me throughout my life. I discovered that through nonprofit marketing, I could put this love to a professional use while having an impact. VolunteerMatch was seeking a Marketing Associate. Check.

Finally, I needed to trust in the organization. I value efficiency, accountability and openness. VolunteerMatch embodies these qualities, while being extremely successful at what it does. Aaaaand check.

I feel incredibly lucky, honored, and most of all excited to join the VolunteerMatch team in this “dream job”. As Lead Generation and Marketing Associate, I’ll be supporting companies in their volunteer engagement efforts. I admire companies that give back to their communities and encourage their employees to do the same.

To learn more about me, my history, and projects I’ve worked on, visit tessasrebro.com. I can’t wait to get started helping more companies get involved with volunteerism, and in turn, make it easier for more good people to connect with more good causes.

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People Make the Difference: Explore a Year of Impact

Everyone should have the chance to make a difference – wouldn’t you agree?

That’s why VolunteerMatch makes it easier for people to connect with the causes they care about.

Explore the 2013 VolunteerMatch Annual Impact Report

To take a look at how far we have come, it is a pleasure to share with you VolunteerMatch’s Annual Impact Report – a graphic look at people and causes, like you and your employees, who are making a difference.

Last year was an important time for us: we re-launched www.VolunteerMatch.org with a one-of-a-kind recommendations engine, overhauled our workplace group management services, ventured onto your mobile phone, and pushed our entire technical infrastructure into the cloud.

And it worked. The improvements helped us power almost a billion dollars’ worth of volunteer service in 2013. And together, we can do even more.

Don’t worry, we’ll dive into each of the sections of this awesome infographic in detail, but for now, enjoy exploring the impact we made together last year – and join in as we create impact in 2014 that exceeds all expectations.

Click here to explore the 2013 VolunteerMatch Annual Impact Report!

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VolunteerMatch and LinkedIn Built a Technology Bridge to the Future of Skilled Volunteering

As of this week, every skilled volunteer opportunity on VolunteerMatch.org gets automatically posted to LinkedIn’s Volunteer Marketplace.
VolunteerMatch and LinkedIn have partnered to build a technology bridge to the future of skilled volunteering.

This is big news for everyone: not just for the 100,000 nonprofits currently using VolunteerMatch.org, who will now be better able to find the skilled help they need.

And not just for the 300 million professional members on LinkedIn who will now have more ways to give their time and skills to a cause they care about.

This is also big news for you and your company. By building this “technology bridge” between the two platforms, VolunteerMatch and LinkedIn have created a rich resource to engage your employees based on their own interests and skills.

So far, the pilot program has already seen twice as many—sometimes three times as many!—sign-ups from interested volunteers, a trend that will only grow when all 5,000+ listings go live today.

Click here to learn more about this partnership, and here directly from VolunteerMatch and LinkedIn.

Click here to check out how VolunteerMatch Solutions makes employee engagement easier and more successful through strategies like skilled volunteering.

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Meet the Team: Samir Shah, Senior Manager, Client Relations

They have facilitated millions of employee volunteer hours. All they have to do is pick up the phone, and corporate executives invest in volunteering. Some claim that they came up with the term “CSR.” They are: The Most Interesting Client Relations Managers in the World.

Meet Samir Shah, Senior Client Relations Manager at VolunteerMatch.1. Give us your elevator speech — what do you do at VolunteerMatch?

I help companies and nonprofits build better volunteer programs.

2. What brought you to VolunteerMatch? How long have you been here?

I came to VolunteerMatch nine years ago because it has an incredible mix of entrepreneurial spirit coupled with a desire to improve social well-being. We were social entrepreneurship before that term became fashionable.

3. What is the most inspiring part of your job? What’s your favorite part?

Helping people and working with amazing organizations. We work with many of the largest and best-run companies and nonprofits in the world, and yet still provide an invaluable service to individuals looking to volunteer and small but substantial nonprofits.

4. If you were to start a foundation or a nonprofit, what would its mission be?

Not sure about a mission statement, but I’ve recently been exploring different areas along the Northern California coast where the Esselen, Miwok and Ohlone used to live. It would be awesome to contribute to efforts like this, where they are restoring some of this land’s beauty and knowledge.

5. Where will the Corporate Social Responsiblity (CSR) industry be in 5 years?

It will be larger and more important to the success of companies. Consumers and employees will require that the companies they buy from and work for are doing less harm and more good.

6. Tell us a story (or two) about something that happened in your work that you consider to be a success, something that you’re proud of, and explain why.

I’ve recently had the pleasure to work with Carla Lehn and my colleague here at VolunteerMatch, Jennifer Bennett, on a project to create an online volunteer program improvement tool for the California Library System. These women are some of the smartest volunteer managers I’ve ever encountered, with a ton of experience. We are taking their knowledge (and their networks’ knowledge) and formalizing it into a dynamic tool that will continue to help volunteer program managers build the best volunteer programs for years to come.

Want to learn more about how Samir and VolunteerMatch help companies engage employees in volunteering? Get in touch!

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