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Entries now open for Australia’s Best Workplaces to Give Back in 2021

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workplaces to give back

It’s always a great time to share good news. With entries now open for Australia’s Best Workplaces to Give Back in 2021, pro social organisations are being encouraged to share theirs. Entering the awards provides an opportunity for employers to share how they have supported opportunities for employees to give back over the year.  

Activities that contribute to winning the award include payroll giving, paid volunteer leave, matching donations, fundraising and sponsorships. Regardless of size, businesses large and small are encouraged to enter whether they have 100 or 100,000 employees, the awards are about recognising good practice in the pro social space.  

Ash Rosshandler, CEO of GoodCompany the award sponsor said, “It’s incredible to see the collective impact made by those contributing at a time when Australians need it most. Given challenges faced in recent times due to floods, fire and the pandemic, it’s so important to recognise, celebrate and benchmark the support for these activities. The annual awards provide the opportunity to do all three and hopefully, by sharing this information, we can raise awareness of the ways businesses can get involved in giving back and making a difference.”  

In 2020, Origin Energy was named Australia’s Best Workplaces to Give Back for the second year running, recognising the work of its philanthropic foundation as well as its community sponsorships and commitment to reconciliation.  

Origin Energy CEO, Frank Calabria said, “Volunteering and giving back through the Origin Energy Foundation is such core part of our culture and identity at Origin, and the impact we make on young lives is a source of great pride for our people. In what continue to be challenging times, especially for the community sector, it’s more important than ever that businesses continue to find ways to support the more vulnerable members of our community.” 

Information from entries submitted create a benchmark for organisations to understand how their participation stacks up and what else they could possibly do to create greater impact. For example, the number of companies offering Paid Volunteer Leave jumped from 87% in 2018 to 94% in 2020, with some even offering unlimited volunteer leave.  

It’s also important to remember the impact on those that participate in the activities – helping others is an incredibly rewarding and positive experience, by offering opportunities to get involved, employee engagement can be positively impacted.  

In more good news, also trending is the rising number of companies matching staff donations and the size of the matching per employee. In 2018, 17.5% of companies in the survey offered uncapped matching for staff donations and in 2020, 25% were offering uncapped matching. In some cases, organisations are unable to offer volunteer events and making a donation is the greatest support they could ask for.  

“This year has been a nightmare for Australian charities, with fundraising and corporate volunteering events cancelled,” Mr Rosshandler said. “Yet at the same time the demand for charities across the board, especially those dealing with domestic violence, mental health and food security, is skyrocketing. So, it’s heartening to see those companies that recognise this and increase the capacity and opportunities for their staff to give back at such a crucial time.” 

Entries to the awards are free and can be submitted via a short 5-question online form at  

Entries are open until 30 August, 2021 with winners announced on 1 September, 2021.  For more information go to 

GoodCompany is the proud sponsor of Australia’s Best Workplaces to Give Back Award. Founded in 2000, GoodCompany is the Australia’s largest unified Workplace Giving, Volunteering, Fundraising and Rewards Software Platform. Trusted by Australia’s leading companies to empower their staff to volunteer, donate and fundraise with the favourite charities, GoodCompany has helped over 100,000 donors to donate over $25 million in cash and 200,000 hours of volunteering across 1800 charities. 

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Pearl Dy is a community manager and journalist. She is passionate about business and development particularly involving not-for-profits, charity and social entrepreneurship.

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