9 Benefits of Creating a Corporate Philanthropy Program with a Community Foundation

In addition to the altruistic motivation to
help others, companies with successful corporate philanthropy strategies
benefit from high employee engagement and retention, more opportunities
to attract top talent, and stronger relationships with consumers.
In addition to the altruistic motivation to help others, companies with successful corporate philanthropy strategies benefit from high employee engagement and retention, more opportunities to attract top talent, and stronger relationships with consumers.

There is a tremendous opportunity for companies to be more socially responsible and help their communities through corporate philanthropy.

In addition to the altruistic motivation to help others, companies with successful corporate philanthropy strategies receive impactful benefits not only for their brand and their workforce, but also for their bottom line.

According to Cone Communications, nearly 90 percent of the consumers surveyed said they would purchase a product because a company supported an issue they care about.

Better yet, companies that partner with community foundations take their strategy to the next level by accessing a philanthropic partner for grantmaking guidance, charitable expertise and administrative support.

Below are the nine greatest benefits a company garners by implementing a corporate philanthropy program with a community foundation:

  1. Cost-effective and efficient: No startup costs or additional legal, CPA or administrative costs.
  2. Employee empowerment: High employee engagement, employee retention and the ability to attract top talent.
  3. Access to experts: Rely on a charitable giving team’s expertise for community knowledge and to meet urgent needs.
  4. Administrative support: Compliance with IRS requirements and fiduciary responsibility without required tax filings.
  5. Brand building: Enhanced public image, brand integrity, business development and government relations.
  6. Grantmaking services: Reduced burden for Finance, Community Relations and HR teams.
  7. Anonymity: Privacy and protection with no public identification.
  8. Protected funds: Budget for philanthropy held securely at a 501(c)3 nonprofit.
  9. Managed charitable assets: Access to sophisticated investment options and financial management to grow charitable giving.

How to Partner with a Community Foundation for Corporate Giving

Companies can access these benefits by establishing a corporate-advised fund with a community foundation.

An advised fund is a charitable vehicle that offers flexibility and customization, allowing companies to engage employees and make a strong philanthropic impact.

With advised funds, companies can give gifts of cash, stock, real estate or other assets to the fund, which is managed by a community foundation, such as The San Diego Foundation. As the charitable assets grow under the stewardship of advisors and investment managers, companies grant the funds and charitable return on investment to nonprofits.

Check out how some of our corporate philanthropy partners have benefited from opening a corporate-advised fund to create corporate philanthropy programs:

“The San Diego Foundation has helped Hologic build an engaged workforce through philanthropy by initiating a partial employee match program. The Foundation staff of philanthropic advisors and financial experts make everything so simple, and we’re able to manage the fund and make grants through an easy-to-use online portal. Their staff has helped us take our corporate philanthropy to the next level.” –Michael J. Watts, Vice President, Hologic

“It was important for us at Qualcomm to build a scholarship program that matched our corporate values; but with limited staff resources and internal bandwidth, we needed help in the process. In addition to handling the time-consuming administrative aspects of the program, The San Diego Foundation team worked with us to develop a program that aligns with our corporate values and truly meets the needs of students.” –Julia Dorfman, Manager, Qualcomm Community Engagement

“We rely on our partnership with The San Diego Foundation to help us connect with companies, individuals and nonprofits to support a more diverse, inclusive, and equitable San Diego.  There’s a saying that ‘if you want to go fast, go alone, but if you want to go far, go together.’ With the help of its community advisors, The Foundation is where you go together to go farther through collaborative, enduring, and strategic initiatives that deliver greater collective impact to build a better San Diego.” –Pedro Villegas, Director of Community Relations, San Diego Gas & Electric

“The San Diego Foundation has been instrumental in helping us identify our giving priorities. As a company that values giving back, we wanted to create a program that had measurable impact and reflected our values. The result was an impactful and mission-focused giving program. They also have been integral in executing our grantmaking.” –Mariel León, Chair, Community Involvement Committee

Make an Impact

If your company is beginning to consider how to give or you’re already making a difference in your community, The San Diego Foundation team is here to help you further your goals.

Since 1975, we have helped passionate, socially-responsible companies find ways to create positive impacts in communities across San Diego County.
Learn more about how our Custom Corporate Giving program could benefit your business.