Why Health Tech Companies Should Prioritize CSR
By Joel Pollick
Corporate Social Responsibility
CSR, or Corporate Social Responsibility, is undeniably important, and is also largely industry-agnostic. What we mean by that is this: doing good is good for business, any business. We believe this deeply, and as a company that combines a subscription-giving platform, volunteer concierge, and personalized impact reports to serve as a “CSR-in-a-Box” for 50-500 person companies, we are incentivized to believe it. Additionally, though, we have identified that some companies can move beyond the baseline notion above that doing good is simply good for business. What we mean by that is this: Some companies are set up to be better at the “doing good” part, as well as receive higher returns from the “good for business” part. HealthTech companies are one such example.
We initially identified this super-CSR mutation from a few of our early, successful clients in Visibly & Candid Co. We then looked across the HealthTech industry to confirm if it was widespread, and confirm we did. Here’s why all companies prioritize CSR, and why HealthTech companies carry super-CSR mutations:
Why all companies prioritize CSR programs:
- Moral Compass: Giving back is the right thing to do, and feels good. Giving is scientifically proven to increase happiness.
- Imitate Leaders: All the cool kids (leading companies) are doing it. The Fortune 500 spends $15B on CSR programs annually, and America’s top 182 CEOs finally said what we all now know: making money and doing good are NOT mutually exclusive activities.
- Employee Retention: Giving back retains today’s talent: 88% of millennials say their jobs are more fulfilling when given opportunities to positively impact social causes.
- Customer Acquisition: Giving back attracts today’s consumer. 90% of millennials would switch brands to one associated with a cause.
- Also, CSR programs immeasurably boost company culture and brand reputation.
Why HealthTech companies carry super-CSR mutations:
- Mission Alignment: HealthTech companies and nonprofits often share the same, or similar, missions to save lives and make the world a better place. This similarity unlocks far greater empathy for nonprofits, making support of, or partnership with, nonprofits more successful.
- Employee Retention: HealthTech is a relatively young industry that employs a socially-conscious millennial majority. Additionally, HealthTech employees are generally more altruistic – and more philanthropic – than other technology sub-industries. (EdTech employees are similar in this way.) As such, providing employees opportunities to give back will drive greater engagement – and increased retention – in these industries.
- Customer Success: Many companies like to give back to the same charities that their clients support. Well, HealthTech companies can cut out the middleman in this strategy because many of their clients are nonprofits! There are 5,261 Community Hospitals in the US, and a majority of those (56.4%, 2,968) are Non-Profit. So, HealthTech workplace giving campaigns may support actual clients, and volunteer programs may enable employees to serve actual clients in a new, positive way.
- Business Development: Building on the last point, HealthTech companies can leverage CSR programs as a highly impactful marketing and business development program. Supporting healthcare or human service organizations could very well mean serving organizations that could become clients, or people who could become end-users.
So, to the thousands (ok, hundreds) of HealthTech companies who’ve read this far, how are you going to do better by doing good?
Joel Pollick, Founder & CEO of Percent Pledge, which offers a cutting-edge giving platform to make giving back easy and transparent. Joel and Percent Pledge’s goals and values are very much aligned to Fast Layne Solutions’ social mission of giving back to the communities in which we operate, so we are thrilled to have Joel guest-blogging for us this month.