Taryn Dunmars

Creating an engaged workforce should not be overlooked — engaged and loyal employees through the means of corporate social responsibility initiatives are a win-win for everyone.

Corporate social responsibility (CSR) is a valuable business concept that benefits all companies, large and small. When well-thought-out CSR strategies trickle down to a company’s workers, who are huge driving forces of the business, amazing things can happen. 

Employees who are dedicated to their work are crucial to a corporation’s growth and success. Using CSR in and out of the workplace will not only give employees a sense of trust, belonging and satisfaction, but it can also positively impact a company’s bottom line.   

How to cultivate engaged employees

Can you imagine having employees who are excited about work each day and give their all because they believe in what the corporation stands for? If your company wants to create a work environment that encourages employee engagement , CSR is the starting point.          

Workplace training and development

young employees in a business meeting

Engaging your workforce starts with the employee onboarding process. This is the perfect time for business owners to introduce their CSR initiatives to new employees and give them an insight into the company’s values. 

According to a 2022 report by Sapling, a whopping 88% of employees feel that their employers didn’t do a good job of onboarding them. This leaves much space for improvement, and doing so could yield results beneficial to your entire company.

In an article by Qualee, it states that good employee engagement can “reduce employee turnover, boost productivity and efficiency, and ultimately results in better business outcomes, and an enhanced customer experience.” By investing in employee workplace training and development, companies are setting themselves and their employees up for success.

The sooner your employees realize the impact your company’s CSR strategy has during the onboarding process, the greater your chances are of creating a workplace where everyone is involved in the greater good of the company and community.

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI)

ethically diverse employees in a work meeting

Did you know that diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) could have a direct impact on creating employee engagement? As companies continue to finetune their CSR strategies, DEI is a component that shouldn’t get overlooked.  

According to an article by CompTia, less than 40% of employees are fully engaged while at work. While it’s no surprise that the 2020 global pandemic exacerbated this statistic, business owners are in overdrive in an attempt to rectify this staggeringly low number.   

“Remember, true DEI goes far beyond simply adding employees from different cultures and groups,” the article states.  Additional actions should be taken if employers wish to see a change in their work culture, such as the following:  

  • Getting buy-in from management for new DEI initiatives
  • Adding employee resource groups (ERGs) to the workforce 
  • Updating DEI practices that may need some finetuning  

Tackling workplace diversity gives companies a competitive advantage over those that do not place much of an emphasis on DEI matters. The more that corporations invest in DEI matters that  make their diverse workforce feel like they belong, the more engaged their employees will be. 


outside workers spreading cement

Does your company want a surefire way to increase your employee engagement rate? One of the best and most successful workforce engagement ideas is to  incorporate more corporate volunteer opportunities. CSR initiatives that include employee volunteerism reap significant benefits, which include a more focused and productive workforce.

YourCause from Blackbaud’s Employee Volunteering Guide provides a summary of research that demonstrates the benefits of volunteering for both employees and the company. If you’re new to Corporate Social Responsibility and employee volunteer programs we recommend reviewing the YourCause getting started guide which starts with building the business case for making the investment and how to integrate CSR into your company’s mission. YourCause also provides data on the power of purpose driven work to make building the case for investing in employee engagement programs even easier. The data compiled shows that 95% of employees believe businesses should benefit all stakeholders not just shareholders.  

Once you have employee engagement programs like volunteering you’ll want to boost employee participation with your programs. Many companies get creative with the types of incentives offered to drive employee participation including volunteer paid time off, volunteer grants or special matching programs. This acticle from YourCause provides a list of common volunteer incentives, examples from companies on how they were implemented and a free download to frequently asked questions.   

We challenge your company to implement or improve upon your corporate volunteer program this year and track the difference in your employees’ engagement. 

What steps can you take to creating a more engaged workforce?

Corporate social responsibility has been proven time and time again to be the answer to many issues a corporation faces, including disengaged employees. In order to cultivate a work culture where employees feel valued, respected, and passionate about the projects they’re working on, CSR should remain at the forefront.

Next up, read how your company can measure the performance of its CSR initiatives.