By Andrea Wong, Co-Founder & President, Endeavour
During 2013 Pro Bono Week and Capital One’s One Week, Endeavour and Capital One Canada partnered to pilot the Done-in-a-Day Pro Bono model in Canada. The Done-in-a-Day model brings together a team of about five volunteers to use their expertise and skills to help a non-profit address an organizational challenge through a bite-sized project in one day.
Endeavour and Capital One Canada worked closely together through four key stages to design and launch the Done-in-a-Day Pro Bono program.
Stage 1: Non-Profit Selection and Project Scoping
Working with client and project selection guidelines from Endeavour, Capital One reached out to charitable partners to participate in the Done-in-a-Day event. Key to the success of the Done-in-a-Day model is scoping a bite-sized project that can be completed in one day. Endeavour worked with the five selected charities to scope out a project for the one-day event and to develop background materials.
Stage 2: Volunteer Recruitment and Orientation/Training
Working with guidelines from Endeavour, Capital One recruited employees to volunteer in the one-day event. The volunteers represented different business units and were at various stages in their careers at Capital One. Capital One and Endeavour worked together to team up volunteers to projects, ensuring a balance between skills, experience and interests. Endeavour worked with a seasoned Endeavour trainer/project advisor to develop the orientation and training materials based on the volunteers’ backgrounds and the projects.
Stage 3: Event Planning and Facilitation
Event planning and facilitation are key to ensuring the Done-in-a-Day event runs smoothly and that teams are able to complete their deliverables in a day. Endeavour worked closely with the trainer/facilitator and Capital One to plan and facilitate the event.
Stage 4: Evaluation
A critical component to all of Endeavour’s programs is evaluation to assess impact and for continuous improvement. At the end of the day, all volunteers and non-profit participants completed an on-site feedback survey.
The Done-in-a-Day event took place on October 22nd at Capital One Canada’s headquarters in Toronto. Twenty-two Capital One volunteers came together in five teams for the orientation and one-day projects. Four of the company’s charitable partners, Albion Neighbourhood Services Boys and Girls Club, East Scarborough Boys and Girls Club, Toronto Kiwanis Boys and Girls Clubs, and National Junior Golf Academy, as well as Shelter Box Canada, participated in the event. The five done-in-a-day pro bono projects tackled a range of challenges, from helping one charity to develop a pricing strategy and break-even analysis for a new earned income program to helping another non-profit organization develop a social media starter kit. As the teams worked with their clients throughout the day, Endeavour facilitators floated around to provide feedback to the teams.
Capping off the event were presentations by each team, with their clients at their side, to Capital One management and their peers. The final presentations provided a great forum for sharing, learning and feedback.
Endeavour’s Done-in-a-Day Pro Bono program pilot in partnership with Capital One Canada was a success, with 100% of volunteers and non-profit participants stating they would recommend the Done-in-a-Day event and participate in the event again.
One Executive Director stated, “With the day-to-day tasks taking up all of our time, this one-day event helped to launch one thing off of our dream list.”
Jonathan Brunetti, a Business Analyst at Capital One who volunteered in the Done-in-a-Day Pro Bono program said, “Working together with a team from a non-profit organization to highlight and address a key issue facing the organization was an excellent experience. I’m glad I could work with Endeavour to help groups in Toronto reach their goals and impact the community.”
Survey results also indicate that the Done-in-a-Day Pro Bono program achieved the following key benefits of an employer-supported pro bono/skills-based volunteer program:
- Increases in employees’ likelihood to seek out volunteer opportunities that use their professional skills and expertise
- Increases in employees’ pride in working for the company
- Team building among colleagues
- Increases in employees’ skills relevant to the job
- Quality deliverables exceed/meet non-profit’s expectations
- Non-profits gain new knowledge and perspectives
- Non-profits are provided with tools, resources, or information that they would otherwise not be able to access
While a number of Capital One employees have volunteered on Endeavour consulting projects on their own time, the on-site Done-in-a-Day Pro Bono event provided exposure to the benefits and fun of skills-based volunteering to employees who had not experienced it before. After getting a taste of pro bono through the one-day event, there were participants from both the volunteer and non-profit sides expressing interest in longer-term pro bono engagements.
With the success of the pilot, Endeavour looks forward to improving the program and partnering with more companies to bring the benefits of the Done-in-a-Day pro bono model to more companies and their employees and charitable partners.
Check out photos from the Done-in-a-Day Pro Bono event at Capital One at http://goo.gl/KxnXbY