Posts

Nonprofit Leadership Traits

Are Gifts In-Kind Eligible to be Matched Through Matching Gift Programs?

Are In-Kind Donations able to be Matched?At Double the Donation we receive a wide range of questions from both nonprofits who subscribe to our matching gift service as well as general readers of our blog. One question that comes up on occasion is whether in-kind donations are eligible to be matched through corporate matching gift programs.

 

Common Question from Nonprofits and Individual Donors

Question from nonprofits:
We’re reviewing our list of donors from the past few months and noticed that some individuals who made in-kind donations work for companies with matching gift programs. Are these donations eligible to be matched?

Question from individual donors:
I work for a company with a matching gift program and want to donate food and supplies to a nonprofit to assist with a recent natural disaster. Do most companies match these in-kind donations?

If you’re looking for the quick explanation then assume the answer is “no, in-kind donations are not match eligible.” Here are excerpts from a few companies’ matching gift program guidelines.

 

Google:

Google is well known for offering a variety of employee giving programs. With matching gifts on personal donations, a fundraising match, and a dollars for doers program, Google supports organizations which employees are passionate about in a number of ways.

In terms of in-kind donations the following is an excerpt from Google’s matching gift guidelines.

“Your gift must be in the form of check, credit card or marketable securities with a quoted market value. Gifts of securities will be matched with cash. The value of the stock will be calculated using the price at the close of the market on the day of transfer of the security. We don’t match any other forms of personal or real property, including in-kind gifts.”

Learn more about Google’s matching gift program >

 

John Deere:

John Deere offers a matching gift program for employees where each employee is able to request matching funds on up to $1,000 of personal contributions each year. The John Deere matches donations to nearly all 501(c)(3) organizations.

In terms of in-kind donations the following is an excerpt from John Deere’s matching gift guidelines.

To qualify for a Program match, employee gifts must:

1. Be paid before a match is paid – pledges do not qualify

2. Be paid in cash, by check or credit card

3. Qualify as a deductible charitable contribution by the U. S. Internal Revenue Service;

4. Be personal contributions by employees only – funds cannot be collected from others and pooled for Program match purposes

Learn more about John Deere’s matching gift program >

 

General Electric:

Did you know that General Electric was the first company to institute a matching gift program? Yes it’s true. Back in 1954, General Electric created the Corporate Alumni Program to support its employees in their personal philanthropy and charitable giving. Since then, it has become a model for countless other employee matching gift programs.

In terms of in-kind donations the following is an excerpt from General Electric’s matching gift guidelines.

Gifts may be made via cash, check, credit card or stock.  Gifts may also be made by current payment from an entity such as a personal foundation or donor advised fund if that entity has been funded solely by the eligible GE participant (note that gifts made to such an entity cannot be matched). The GE Foundation will not match real estate, in-kind, or non-monetary contributions (e.g. services, materials, supplies, etc.).

Learn more about General Electric’s matching gift program >

 

Beam Inc:

Beam Inc. matches donations from employees to a wide range of organizations which fall under the following three general categories:

  1. Education (K-12 and higher education included)
  2. Arts and cultural organizations
  3. Youth based organizations

In terms of in-kind donations the following is an excerpt from Beam Inc.’s matching gift guidelines.

Examples of donations which are not eligible for a matching gift are those involving:

1. Dues, payments, subscriptions and contributions which accrue significant personal benefits to the donor. (e.g., gifts, which cover the cost of services, tuition, fees, subscriptions, tickets, or other considerations).

2. In-kind donations

Learn more about Beam Inc’s matching gift program >

 

Aspect Software:

Aspect Software offers both an employee matching gift program as well as a volunteer grant program. Through Aspect Software’s matching gift program, Aspect matches up to $1,000 annually per employee per year. Through Aspect’s Dollars for Doers program, the company provides $10 per every hour an employee volunteers (max $250 annually).

In terms of in-kind donations the following is an excerpt from Aspect Software’s matching gift guidelines.

What Gifts are Ineligible?

1. Gifts which result in a benefit to the employee.  Examples include:  dues, subscriptions, fees, loan repayments, bequests, insurance premiums, tuition, tickets and dinners.

2. Gifts or payments for primarily political or religious purposes, unless specified for a community outreach program, such as a soup kitchen or homeless shelter.

3. In-kind gifts or gifts of real estate.

4. And a number of other common restrictions.

Learn more about Aspect Software’s matching gift program >

Fort Lauderdale Matching Gifts

Companies in Miami and Fort Lauderdale, Florida which Double Donations through Employee Matching Gift Programs

At Double the Donation, we’re often asked about companies with matching gift programs in specific areas. We help nonprofits increase fundraising by optimizing potential matching gifts from their donors.

The first place to start when trying to increase your organization’s matching gifts is to familiarize yourself with some of the top companies in your area that offer these programs.

Miami Matching Gift Companies

Miami is a financial and cultural center in the state of Florida. With multiple, philanthropic companies in the area, it pays to know which corporations have matching gift programs. The city is also headquarters for many multinational corporations.

We’ve compiled a short list of some of the top companies in Miami and Fort Lauderdale area that have great employee matching gift programs.

Assurantassurant

Assurant will match donations between $25 and $1,000. They will match to most nonprofits. Part-time and retired employees are eligible to take part in the program.

Read more about Assurant’s matching gift program.

General MotorsGM

General Motors doesn’t offer a matching gift at the moment, but they do have a volunteer grant program. Organizations can receive $200 for employees who spend 50 hours volunteering for their nonprofits.

In the coming years we look forward to GM joining the trend among US automakers in offering their employees the option of a matching gift program.

Read more about the General Motors employee volunteer grants program.

GoogleGoogle

Google has one the more generous employee giving programs out there. They match between $50 and $12,000 made by employees and board members. They also have an employee volunteer program that pays nonprofits $10 for every hour an employee volunteers.

Read more about Google’s employee matching gift program.

Office DepotOD

Office Depot will match between $25 and $10,000 per employee, making it the top matching employer on this list. Part-time employees are eligible for this program.

Read more about the Office Depot matching gift program.

Want to learn more about corporate matching gift programs?

Companies doing corporate philanthropy right

Why Do Companies Have Corporate Matching Programs?

People are usually told that if it’s too good to be true, it probably is. And even more people have that very same reaction when they’re told that their employers are willing to give out free money to a nonprofit of their choice.

But it is true, more and more companies are offering corporate matching programs. These programs will double, and sometimes triple or quadruple, an employee’s donation to a select nonprofit. Other times, companies will offer grants to a nonprofit if their employees volunteer their time at that organization.

There are a few reasons corporations give to charity. One of the most well known reasons is for tax purposes, but the benefits go much deeper.

Corporate Giving is Great for Branding

Google gives grants to improve water access in the developing world.

What is the biggest misconception people have about branding? That brands are logos and logos are brands. The way people perceive your company and its products goes much deeper than a logo. It’s influenced by previous interactions, by advertising, and by what people have read and know about the company.

Companies like Toms Shoes are well known for their one-for-one program that donates a pair of shoes to an impoverished child for every pair purchased. When consumers make the decision to buy a pair of Toms Shoes, they’re not just deciding on the shoe, or the Toms logo, their decision is heavily influenced by the ways that Toms has branded themselves as a leader in philanthropy. That means people feel good doing business with Toms, and will want to do business with them as much as possible.

But not every company needs to donate shoes to make a difference. We’ve recently spotlighted companies like Google for their robust spirit of philanthropy and the corporate mantra “Don’t Be Evil”. Consumers trust Google because they have a reputation for doing good. And trust goes a long way in business.

Companies everywhere are giving millions of dollars away to charity for one simple reason, it’s good for business.

Why Corporate Matching?

You may be wondering why companies wouldn’t just donate their entire giving budget to a few select charities.

For one, matching employee donations can forgo difficult vetting processes for charities. Companies don’t want to donate money to charities that are inefficient, corrupt, or have had major scandals. Matching employee donations puts the research burden on the employee. It also avoids debates about which nonprofits should receive funds by democratizing the process.

Matching donations also encourage employee philanthropy. Generous employees look good for overall company branding too. Microsoft, for instance, can boast that its employees raised over $1 billion dollars for charity since the inception of its giving program.

Matching also increases employee morale and retention. It’s easy to feel like a cog in a machine with no attachment to your workplace, but a company that takes interest in charities which its employees support is more likely to gain their respect as well.

Matching Gift and Volunteer Grant Newsletter Signup

Additional Resources on Matching Grant Programs

Want to learn more about matching grant programs and how they benefit your organization? Check out the following articles:

  1. Common Matching Gift Questions – Six of the most frequently asked questions about matching grant programs.
  2. Generous Matching Grant Programs – Ten companies which triple or quadruple employee donations.

We also encourage you to explore Double the Donation’s matching gift and volunteer grant service to see if it can help your nonprofit raise more money from employee giving programs.