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blog • Resource

How can employers get involved in the movement?

Megan Raybould

28 August 2020

Employers have an important role to play in this movement. Read on to find out more and get involved!

What are the benefits of allowing employees dedicated time to volunteering?

There are lots of reasons why employers should consider supporting employees to volunteer. The most obvious of which is staff development. But there are other benefits too, including employee satisfaction & retention, and being a socially responsible business (of which there is a growing trend towards).

Last year NCVO produced this report on Employer Supported Volunteering. In it they outline some of the impact to employers of encouraging volunteering:

Beyond the impact they want to make on their communities, employers also reported participating in employee supported volunteering to benefit their employees (eg supporting their development, feeling better about their workplace) as well as benefiting their business(eg increased employee productivity, enhanced image and reputation of the business, supporting their organisational strategies, and breaking sildes across teams.)

"Happy and engaged employees work harder, and by supporting volunteering, the business is more profitable…that’s in conjunction with other things. It’s also just the right thing to do, we have a rare privilege of having 80,000 employees with skills who can give back to the local community.’"(Quote from employer).

What is the particular benefit of supporting employees to take on trustee roles?

Trustee roles allow for skills development that will benefit them and support them in their work capacity too. Including:

  • Strategic decision making
  • Understanding of charity governance
  • Practice in risk management
  • Practice in creating strategy
  • Understanding budgets and funding streams.

Sophie Livingstone, Managing Director at Trustees Unlimited, explains her thoughts on this in a blog:

“Being a charity trustee enables employees to broaden their horizons, work with people from different backgrounds and gain board-level and governance experience at a younger age. Individuals also will widen their networks and feel they are making a difference too.”

Trusteeships allow for “professional development to help employees gain new skills which they then bring back to the office. Charities benefit too from employing professional people, as it helps improve board diversity and plug skills gaps.”

Are any employers already doing this?

Yoti are a great example of an employer already doing this. We spoke to Julie, Director of Regulatory & Policy at Yoti about the Young Trustees Movement and what employers can do to support the diversification of trustee boards.

“At Yoti two of our team ran an event interviewing three senior women about their leadership journeys. After that event I started to think more about what had helped me in the last few decades.

In my late 20s I became a trustee of a local charity, a Scout group. I took a course in governance with the local CVS and had the chance to meet a school governor, a local councillor and a trustee. Shortly after I applied for a trustee role in a national organisation, Youthnet now The Mix. That really gave me, for the first time, a helicopter overview of a non-profit at a national level that was reaching out to seval million young people.

It helped me develop my own skills in terms of understanding the financials of an organisation, and looking at recruitment at a board level. Overall, I think that being a trustee has helped me both in my professional life and in understanding the challenges of young people as I became a parent.

Some of the work we are doing at Yoti at the minute, made me think that a trustee role would be a really valuable experience for some of our staff, and the skills that we have in our team at Yoti and the staff at other BCorps could really help other nonprofits. So we organised an event jointly with the Young Trustees Movement inviting our staff and other BCorps leaders and staff to spread the word further.”

To find out more about Yoti and the projects they are working on, take a look at their website.

How can employers support young trusteeship?

  • Give employees volunteer days
  • Host a lunch and learn for your employees on the benefits of Trusteeship
  • You can also pledge!

If you are an employer and support young trustees, or a young trustee supported by your employer, get in touch! We’d love to showcase your story and help inspire others! – get in touch with meg@thesocialchangeagency.org.

Become an ambassador

Young people are at the heart of our movement. Ambassadors act as spokes people for the movement, they take a leading role in creating the strategy and help to facilitate other young people to be involved.

Book a Training Session

Join a 1 hour training session to understand the power of young trustees, have a framework to understand how to approach board diversity and take practical next steps.