Campaign Toolkit

Running a Workplace Giving Campaign

United Way of South Hampton Roads believes that anyone—regardless of income—can be a philanthropist and give their money or time to our community. Employee campaigns are a simple way to make a difference while creating a more engaged and connected workforce. Through employee campaigns, United Way provides an opportunity for thousands of individuals and employees from more than 500 South Hampton Roads area businesses to donate a portion of every paycheck to make a positive impact. United Way works with business partners to create a meaningful experience for employees and companies and a lasting change for our community. To get involved in Employee Giving, please contact us.

Step 1: Campaign Planning & Year-Round Engagement

Allow sufficient time to plan your campaign and incorporate year-round engagement strategies to increase participation and reach your goals.

Engage your CEO and Senior Executives

When your CEO and senior management support the campaign and take part in activities, employee participation increases, setting the stage for increased contributions at every level.

Recruit a Campaign Committee

Don’t try to run your campaign by yourself! Make sure to recruit other enthusiastic and resourceful employees to help with the campaign.

Develop a Timeline, Checklist and Theme

Timelines and checklists are meant to encourage ambassadors and committee members to try new practices and create greater efficiency for your campaign.

Say Thank You

Say thank you and say it often! Thanking your staff is one of your most important objectives.

Promote Leadership Giving & Affinity Groups

Increase revenue within your workplace campaign by promoting leadership giving and inviting employees to join a United Way affinity group:

  • Young Philanthropists
  • African American Leadership Society
  • Women United
  • Tocqueville Society

Year-Round Engagement

Providing engagement opportunities for your staff throughout the year will increase participation and dollars raised. More importantly, year-round engagement activities educate your staff about the impact they are making on our community and provide opportunities for United Way to thank them for their support, time and efforts.

Step 2: Develop Goals & Measurable Objectives

Setting specific goals and objectives help measure progress and results and determines where to focus your energy within your campaign plan.

Setting Goals

Use United Way’s Campaign Goal Setting Tool. This will enable you to compare various scenarios of how to grow your United Way Campaign. If this is your first time using the goal setting tool, please contact your Relationship Manager so they can walk you through the process and assist with setting campaign goals, such as:

  • Assessing your campaign strengths and opportunities.
  • Analyzing results of past years.
  • Setting strong goals and objectives to make your campaign the most successful yet!

If you do not know who your Relationship Manager is, please contact Michele Anderson at

Step 3: Educate Your Employees

Choose the right balance of head and heart for a successful campaign.

United Way has many tools and best practices that bring together meaningful stories and impactful statistics to help educate and inspire your staff. When planning and designing the communications for your campaign, make sure you use:

  • Consistent messaging
  • Multiple communication mediums—events, email, intranet, social media, posters, videos and PowerPoint, in order to reach the broadest audience
  • Personal stories and impactful statistics

Here are several ways you can educate your staff:

Success Stories Sharing success stories with your staff is a great way to not only thank your donors, but also educate them about how their efforts are helping turn the stories around for those most in need.

Impact Events

When planning an impact event, make sure to include information about how United Way of South Hampton Roads is addressing our community’s most pressing problems so donors are informed when making their giving decisions. Here are some tips:

  • Order United Way materials to use during events to educate your employees.
  • Download PDFs and overviews (link to what you’ll need)
  • Schedule a United Way agency tour during your campaign to help educate your co-workers about community needs.
  • Work with United Way to find a speaker who can share their personal story. The best presentations combine head and heart information.
  • Your Relationship Manager can help you identify and prep your speakers to ensure success.

Volunteer Events

When people give their time and efforts to make this a better community for all of us, they are more likely to give. Volunteering is also a great activity to promote during the campaign to increase participation.

Fundraising Events

Running a campaign is a great way to build team morale—so have some fun while you’re at it! The more creative, the better! Check out some great ideas for workplace giving campaigns and read about what your partners have done too.

Promote your Campaign through Social Media

Facebook: Share your campaign with us and others on Facebook. Post your campaign event photos on United Way of South Hampton Roads Facebook Page. Be sure to “Like” us and encourage others to do the same! Twitter:

  • Show your support for United Way of South Hampton Roads on Twitter @unitedwayshr
  • Use the hashtag #LIVEUNITED in your tweets while running your campaign
  • Retweet (RT) others who are using #LIVEUNITED

Remember to use your personal social media channels to spread the word about United Way of South Hampton Roads!

Step 4: Create the Right Ask

The number one reason people make charitable donations is because they are asked, which makes your role as a solicitor very important. This can be difficult, especially for first-time volunteers, but we have some easy techniques to help.

Group Solicitation

Assemble employees as a group to hear about the work of United Way of South Hampton Roads and ask them to make a contribution.

Personal Solicitation

Personally asking employees is very effective and gives you a chance to educate your co-workers and answer any questions. Remember, peer-to-peer is best!

Electronic Solicitation

Online giving makes it easy for your colleagues to contribute. Our Workplace Giving Portal is a secure online tool that is customizable for your company. Contact your Relationship Manager for additional information.

Mailbox Solicitation Campaign

Solicitation by mail can be an effective way to inform employees who are hard to reach or cannot attend group meetings. To make this approach as effective as possible:

Target Specific Audiences

Your employees are bombarded with messaging from many sources every day. The more you can target your employees, specifically speaking to their needs, the better. You can segment your campaign to increase results, and United Way of South Hampton Roads Relationship Managers can help you tailor messaging, events and other engagements specific to your audience’s needs.

Gift Matching

Many United Way of South Hampton Roads company partners have generously offered matches to help incent your staff to donate. People are 42 percent more likely to give when their dollars are matched. Whether you offer a 1:1 match or a 50% match, the program is an amazing way to inspire giving.

Step 5: Campaign Wrap Up & Celebration

Remit early and often! Final campaign results should be submitted to United Way of South Hampton Roads within two weeks of campaign close to allow us adequate time to process pledges and thank your employees.

Seven steps to the paper remittance process:

  1. Include pledge forms in remittance envelopes (maximum of 50 pledge forms per envelope).
  2. Keep copies of the pledge forms for your payroll department.
  3. Include designation information.
  4. Fill out remittance information completely.
  5. Confirm totals are correct.
  6. Copy the envelope face for your records.
  7. Call your Relationship Manager to schedule a pick-up.

Steps to the Workplace Giving Portal remittance process:

  1. Instruct your Relationship Manager to close the site.
  2. Turn-in any fundraising money or cash/checks you may have so they can be added to the site.
  3. Get Donor Report from United Way of South Hampton Roads to submit to payroll office.
  4. Confirm totals are correct.
  5. Submit file to payroll department.

Be sure to celebrate your company campaign achievments!


ECL Materials

  • ECL Handbook (coming soon)

Print Materials

Success Stories

  • Success Stories (coming soon)
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