For nonprofit organizations, every dollar counts. Corporate employee matching gifts offer the opportunity to turn one dollar donated by a match-eligible employee into two, three, four, or even five dollars!
Let’s explore exactly what YOU can expect when seeking a matching gift, and how to make the most of this incredible opportunity.
What are Corporate Matching Gift Programs?
Employee matching gift programs are set up to encourage employees to give back to their communities. Companies encourage employees to participate in community outreach. Then, by making donations to the same nonprofits as their employees, the companies are also active participants in their communities.
These programs have become quite widespread, but many donors have not heard of them or aren’t aware of their own match-eligibility. $4-7 billion in matching gift revenue is left on the table each year. We want to work with our partners to claim some of it.
Elements of Match Giving Programs
The specifics of these programs vary from company to company, but the elements that shape these guidelines are always the same:
- Match ratio: This defines what kind of donation the company will make in relation to the employee’s initial contribution. A 1:1 ratio indicates that the company will donate the exact same amount, doubling the contribution to the employee’s chosen nonprofit.
- Minimum and maximum: The minimum refers to the amount an employee must donate to qualify for a matching gift. The maximum is the total amount that a company will donate in matching contributions per employee annually.
- Employee status: Sometimes, the employee’s role at the company can affect the match. For example, Gap Inc. offers a $1,000 maximum to part-time employees and a $10,000 maximum to Senior VP’s.
- Nonprofit eligibility: Some programs offer different matches based on the type of nonprofit. ExxonMobil offers a higher match for donations made to educational institutions.
- Deadline: Most programs identify a deadline when the matching gift request must be submitted by the employee. This deadline can be either a firm date (December 31st is common) or a threshold based on the date of the initial donation (90 days after donation is made). However, some companies give a full year to submit your forms requesting a match.
Examples of Companies That Match
Thousands of companies offer matching gift programs. A few examples include:
- Johnson & Johnson — Triples donations with a 2:1 match for current employees, while also doubling donations (a 1:1 match) for retirees.
- Bank of America — Matches donations 1:1 up to $5,000 annually per employee.
- Home Depot — Matches donations 1:1 up to $3,000 annually per employee.
The impact of these programs can be substantial! Microsoft has been known to match over $48 million worth of employee donations to schools and 501(c)(3) nonprofits in a single year. Did you know that more than 18 million employees work for companies with matching gift programs? You might be one of them.
Want to Increase Your Impact with The 25 Project?
Increasing revenue with matching gifts isn’t too tricky, but we need our donors’ help. Last year we received 107 matching gifts, which helped us raise $66,166. We’ve set a goal of raising $80,000 in 2019 through matching programs. If we meet our goal, we will be able to build and supply a new ministry center in Sierra Leone, provide teaching materials for children in the Dominican Republic, and provide an additional teacher at Intlantsi Christian School in Fort White, South Africa.
You can help us reach these goals by searching to see if you are match-eligible. Immediately determine your eligibility and gain access to detailed information about your employer’s corporate giving program by searching our database of matching gift programs.
We’ll provide you with the following:
- Up-to-date, company-specific program guidelines
- Links to the online matching gift request forms or downloadable PDFs offered by your employer
- Our contact information (Tax ID, address, fundraising contact), which you may need for your matching gift request.
If your company isn’t listed, make sure to check with your company’s HR department. It’s possible that your employer offers matching gifts, but is not included on this list.
We wish we could submit the required form for you, but unfortunately the employee must submit the matching gift request to their employer directly. We appreciate you taking a few minutes to double your donation!
Contact Barbara Cross, Director of Donor Relations, if you have any questions. She would love to help you! email@example.com