The Challenge

The Good News: Thousands of companies offer to match employee donations to nonprofits. Billions are available to create positive social impact.

The Bad News: A dishearteningly low percentage – an estimated average of 10% — of these funds are claimed. This deprives thousands of organizations of funding that could make a huge difference in combating disease, injustice, hunger, environmental degradation and other challenges.

The Opportunity: Low employee matching gift participation rates are driven by “sins” of omission not commission. The problem is not that employees reject programs as “evil” or that employees aren’t already giving. Rather it’s a huge case of people “not getting around” to requesting matching funds for a variety of reasons.  (Industry statistics indicate, for example, that 78% of employees are unaware of whether their company offers matching donations!)

The Answer: The Boost Matching Alliance is laser-focused on moving more employees to multiply the impact of their personal giving with corporate matching gifts. Leveraging insights from behavioral science, the Boost Matching Alliance will equip companies with tools that will motivate employees to ramp up their participation.

Unleashing this “found money” will have a powerful, positive impact on numerous initiatives to heal our troubled world. Although certainly not easy, there is no opposition to this initiative and plenty of mutual self-interest to fuel its progress:

— Employees will benefit from the doubling (or better) of the impact of their personal giving

— Companies will benefit from greater employee engagement

— Nonprofits will benefit from greater financial support

— Corporate philanthropy platform providers will benefit from greater use of their products

— And the world will benefit from the unleashing of additional resources to attack societal problems

Industry Statistics

  • An estimated $2 – $3 billion in corporate matching gifts is claimed annually1
  • An estimated $4 – $7 billion in corporate matching gifts go unspent annually1
  • Average employee participation in corporate matching gift programs is 10%1
  • 24.7% of employees participated in matching gift programs among the 162 companies that responded to a question on that topic in the Chief Executives for Corporate Purpose’s Giving In Numbers 2020 survey.5
  • The median dollar value of matching gifts decreased by 18% between 2017 and 2019, among respondents to the CECP’s Giving In Numbers 2020 survey. Companies that had a policy of offering to match employee donations all year-round were the only category of matching-gift program that increased its median cash contributions.6
  • 78% of match-eligible donors don’t know if their company offers matching gifts1
  • 65% of Fortune 500 companies have matching gift programs1
  • Over 18 million people work for companies with matching gift programs1
  • The majority of companies (66%) have an open matching gift program, meaning employees can give to most nonprofit organizations2
  • GE created the first employee matching gift program in 19543
  • Seventy-three percent of Americans reported in 2020 that they give to charity4
  • Positive Correlation Between Matching Gift Programs And Happiest Employees: Building on a recent study from Comparably identifying major companies with the happiest employees, the BMA discovered that 70 percent of the top 10 companies have an employee matching gift programs.

The Boost Matching Alliance brings companies, nonprofits and technology providers together to significantly increase employee participation.   Over time we will unleash hundreds of millions of dollars in contributions to tackle societal problems.

This is a marathon, not a sprint. In 2022, we seek to:

  1. Hold our first conference (May 17 in Atlanta) to bring our community together to explore new ways to attack this problem.
  2. Test behavioral science concepts in cooperation with community members (e.g. nudging for good, loss aversion, gamification) to see what most effectively moves more employees to participate.
  3. Create an online resource center providing employee matching gift program leaders with easy access to information such as:
    1. Best practice analysis
    2. Case studies
    3. Service provider information
    4. Customizable national campaign resources
  4. Explore the creation of an annual employee matching gift day to spur greater participation


Want to get involved at the ground-floor level? Contact us at