Paid time off for vacation and personal needs is a common benefit at many companies, but have you considered offering paid time off for volunteering? While paying your employees for time out of the office volunteering might seem like a strange benefit to you, volunteer time off (VTO) policies are a great way to cement your company values and encourage employees to give back.
What Is Paid Time Off for Volunteering?
Many times, paid time off for volunteering does not need to be a large chunk of time. Most companies with VTO policies only offer 8 hours, or one day, of paid leave per employee per year. Some companies choose to create a list of valid organizations for VTO use that align with their corporate mission or community. For example, some organizations require that volunteer time off be used only for organizations that have United Way affiliation. VTO often works the same as PTO, where employees need to request the time in advance and get approval.
Should You Offer Paid Time Off for Volunteering?
Just over 10 years ago, only 15% of employers offered VTO as a benefit. However, now companies are taking social responsibility and the communities around them more seriously. Millennials are interested in businesses that want to improve the world around them, and companies who are focused on corporate social responsibility are also those who are thriving in a competitive hiring environment. One survey by Fortune also found that paid time off for volunteering improves employee retention efforts. When employees feel good about their jobs and the work that their employer is doing in and out of the office, they are much more likely to stay around.
How Can You Start a VTO Policy?
If you’re interested in learning more about paid time off for volunteering, designing a policy that works for your office or finding new opportunities to give back to your community, Business Volunteers Maryland is here to help.
Encourage Your Employees to Volunteer with Business Volunteers Maryland
Business Volunteers Maryland is a nonprofit dedicated to strengthening the community by creating strategic connections between businesses, nonprofits and individuals. We help companies like yours to establish and expand community impact efforts while achieving your business goals. To learn more about our services and learn more about volunteering as a team, contact us by calling (410) 366-6030.