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2006 Deloitte/Points of Light Volunteer IMPACT Study

Executive Summary


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Despite a need for more resources, the vast majority of non-profit organizations are not capitalizing on the valuable professional skills of their volunteers, a new study has found. More than three quarters of non-profit leaders (77 percent) believe that skilled volunteers could significantly improve their organization’s business practices. Yet just 12 percent of non-profits actually put volunteers to work on such assignments.  That’s among the findings of the 2006 Deloitte / Points of Light Volunteer IMPACT Study, released by Deloitte LLP and the Points of Light Foundation to coincide with National Volunteer Week. The value of volunteers' workplace skills

The 2006 Deloitte / Points of Light Volunteer IMPACT Study, which surveyed non-profit executives and volunteers from corporate America, showed that nearly nine out of 10 non-profit leaders (89 percent) generally agree that volunteers’ workplace skills are valuable to non-profits.  Working professionals shared a similar view. Seventy-three percent of them believe their workplace skills are valuable to a non-profit organization. 

Yet, nearly two-thirds (62 percent) of non-profit executives report they do not work with any companies that provide volunteers.  Just 12 percent of non-profits report they typically align tasks with the specific workplace skills of volunteers.

Other key research findings include:

  • Two out of five volunteers (40 percent) say they actively look for opportunities to use their workplace skills when they volunteer
  • Nearly one-third (29 percent) of volunteers believe their workplace skills are what non-profit organizations need from them most
  • Only about one in five volunteers (19 percent) say they primarily apply their workplace skills in their volunteer assignments

The study indicates that skills-based volunteering is highly beneficial to the volunteer, as nearly two-thirds of volunteers (63 percent) think volunteering has had a positive effect on their career. 

Deloitte LLP and the Points of Light Foundation surveyed 200 non-profit leaders and 750 white-collar American workers to explore the value of workplace skills to non-profits. The key finding: despite non-profits and volunteers both placing a very high value on workplace skills, neither are capitalizing on them to make an even greater impact on society.

Read the Executive Summary below for a full summary and analysis of our key research findings.

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