Bosch, North America

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North America

Bosch bridges giving and volunteering efforts at locations across U.S. with Blackbaud’s YourCause


With more than 100 U.S. locations and a heart for supporting STEM education, Bosch sought a corporate social responsibility solution that could provide a shared process for employee giving and volunteering programs. Blackbaud’s YourCause solution boosted ease, efficiency, and enthusiasm. 

A clever video crafted with infomercial flair kicks off with a series of questions for associates at Bosch in North America.

“Tired of tracking emails and spreadsheets for your volunteer events?” The narrator asks. “Sick of trying to read sloppy handwriting on sign-up sheets? . . . Stressed out by disorganized donation campaigns?” And finally: “Do you want a way to better organize employee events and giving campaigns?”

Not surprisingly, a set of Bosch coworkers huddling around a colleague’s desk cheers, “YEEEESSS!” and the narrator gives them the answer they were waiting for—a cloud-based software solution designed with corporate social responsibility (CSR) in mind. “Now there’s YourCause, where you can sign up to volunteer and donate to charities all in one place!”

The video—which was recognized as a finalist for a Bosch company award—and Blackbaud’s YourCause have boosted CSR efforts at Bosch, where a popular cause is STEM education, including coaching kids in FIRST® Robotics competitions. “Employees want this,” said Brad McKenna, corporate citizenship manager for Bosch, North America. “They want to be a part of it.”

A Cohesive Approach

Bosch’s complex supply operations in the United States involve around 18,000 associates across nearly 100 locations. Before YourCause, those locations all promoted giving and volunteering, often with great passion, but their methods weren’t consistent or necessarily efficient.

“Each location is doing great work in the community, but everybody was working independently,” McKenna said. “We needed something that would help us to have more alignment, a cohesive approach, and the YourCause platform was going to be that tool. We saw that quickly.”

When he started to seriously consider YourCause in 2018, McKenna was impressed by the solution and won over by the people and processes behind it. At the time, YourCause was already an industry leader, and when Blackbaud acquired the YourCause platform in early 2019, McKenna was even more pleased. He was familiar with Blackbaud solutions from his previous work in fundraising for New York University and other nonprofits.

“I always looked at Blackbaud as the knowledge source for how nonprofits do business and how they need to engage their donors, and YourCause was doing great work around learning the needs of companies and how to engage nonprofits,” McKenna explained. “The acquisition said to me, ‘Oh my goodness. Both sides of this picture are going to get even better.’”

Supporting STEM Education Together

Bosch started using Blackbaud’s YourCause as a pilot program at three of its locations in 2019 and expanded the system to include all U.S. employees within a year. “Our associates are very supportive of it,” McKenna said. “It makes their life a lot easier, and we just keep adding value by the next steps.”

At first, associates could give to favorite nonprofits by credit card through Blackbaud’s YourCause or by redeeming Bosch Cause Cards—incentivized donations paid for by the company. By the next year, Bosch added the option of giving through payroll deduction and also incorporated giving campaigns, such as United Way, that previously required manual processing by human resources and payroll teams, as well as nonprofit recipients. The shift eliminated human errors and allowed associates to make changes easily. “Both greater effectiveness and greater efficiency were achieved.”

On the volunteer side, Bosch initially leveraged Blackbaud’s YourCause for scheduling events and eventually made use of data analytics to improve their programs. In total, Bosch saw Blackbaud’s YourCause use grow through 2019 to include 122 events, 1,314 signups, and 23,707 logged volunteer hours. The stats also revealed Bosch’s top five areas of engagement, with education clearly No. 1, thanks to a companywide initiative to support STEM learning. That includes supporting programs like The Engineering Society of Detroit’s Girls in Engineering Academy and the global FIRST Robotics community encompassing preschool through high school students.

Blackbaud’s YourCause has helped Bosch scale up FIRST Robotics efforts by making it easy for associates from across the company to communicate on the topic—more than 150 Bosch associates coach teams. “That’s something that’s really dear to the heart of the workforce and the heart of the organization,” McKenna said.

A variety of other tools within Blackbaud’s YourCause also help make CSR easier. For example, McKenna appreciates that the volunteer signup process asks employees willing to be in PR photos to give permission on the front end. But one of the most valuable overarching aspects is the connectivity it provides Bosch associates working across America, from Fort Lauderdale to Detroit to Silicon Valley. As McKenna explained, “This gives us a virtual environment to work together.”

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Bosch, North America
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