How to Create Data-Driven Donation Reports: Showing Off the Work of Your CSR Program

Reporting on your CSR program with data-driven donation reports is an important part of showing your board and executive leaders the impact your company is having. By reporting on your CSR program, you can help your leadership team understand the difference your corporate giving is making. Make sure that your team can understand what your CSR donations are doing by creating data-driven reports.

What Your Board Wants to Know About Your CSR Program

Telling your board or executive leadership team about your CSR program can be a challenge, especially since you have limited time to loop your leaders in on everything going on with your company. There are a few things you can focus on to make sure your board understands the importance of your CSR program in your CSR report. 

Make the Business Case for Your CSR Program

Tie your CSR program to key business goals, such as improving your company’s public perception or allowing your company to secure some good positive press coverage. Your CSR program can also be a good way to offset your tax burden, and your CSR report can be a great place to highlight the high level important facts about your CSR program. Any other business uses for your program are good to highlight, such as a way being more sustainable has been helpful to reduce costs. 

Share the Internal Impact of Your CSR Program

Another important part of your CSR program that your board wants to know from your CSR report is its internal impact. Has giving back to your community helped your employees feel more connected? Have your employees engaged with your CSR program through volunteering or company matches? These are all great pieces of information to communicate with your leaders to help them understand how the program is performing internally.

Collect the Right Donation Data for Your CSR Report

Not all donation reports are created equal. CSR programs need to capture important data on the amount the company is donating as well as the impact that money has had. Here’s what you need to know to create an effective CSR donation report. 

Your CSR Program By the Numbers

Numbers mean a lot for your CSR donation report. Pulling data like the total amount of money donated by your company, the number of lives impacted by your corporate giving, and the number of organizations supported can be a great way to show the scale of your CSR program in your CSR report. By understanding these quantitative data points, you can give your leaders a way to see the big picture of your CSR program and the impact you are having. Your CSR report can give them quick, digestible facts that are easily shared with others and serve as helpful context for your stakeholders.

Humanize Your Statistics with Stories

Data is important for your CSR report, but statistics aren’t enough to represent your CSR work as a company. Make sure you gather stories of impact to pair with the numbers to humanize your impact as an organization. Sharing the experience of someone that your CSR program helped can be a great way to equip your leaders and stakeholders to understand and talk about why your corporate giving is so important. Add in human, high-impact stories to your CSR report for a powerful representation of your company’s impact.

Share Donation Data Simply

Once you’ve collected the right donation data for your CSR report, you have to make sure that you share it in a way that is simply, digestible, and drives home why those numbers matter. 

Use Visuals

Don’t just share paragraphs of text listing out the important numbers for your CSR program. Fill your CSR report with colorful visuals, including graphs and icons, that help your stakeholders instantly understand why your CSR program is important. Try breaking down data into several sections, such as a by-the-numbers area that shows key metrics you want to communicate in your CSR report. Including photos of people you’ve impacted or that showcase the scale of your donation can also help drive home what your corporate giving has made possible.

Compare Your Donations Year-Over-Year

Another helpful way to structure a data-driven CSR report is by comparing numbers year-over-year. By showing the growth of the program, you can demonstrate that your company’s commitment to the community has only increased over time. An increase in corporate giving can be a great way to connect with your employees, nonprofit partners, and community while showing off your company’s charitable efforts.

Explain Any New Campaigns or Influences

What’s changed over the last year of your CSR program? By explaining any new campaigns or influences that may have impact the numbers, you can help your stakeholders understand what is happening and build a narrative around the year. Maybe you pivoted this past year to help an employee or focused on a particularly timely cause—call these responsive efforts out in your CSR report to show that your company is dedicated to giving back. 

Graphs and Color Coding Can Simplify Your Donation Report

While we already talked about visuals, it’s important to drive home just how essential graphs and color coding can be to set your donation report apart. Try segmenting your giving by category and using color to separate that information, or use occasional pops of color to call attention to the most dramatic parts of your corporate giving impact. These simple tricks will help your CSR report communicate just how much your CSR program has done.

Choose the Right Tool for Your Donation Data and CSR Report

Building a CSR report from scratch or manually gathering your donation data can be incredibly time consuming and ripe for human error. Instead, make sure that your CSR management software helps you pull the data you need for your CSR report. You can streamline your CSR reporting process with the right CSR management software. 

Software That Tracks Your In-Kind Donations

The best CSR management software makes it easy to track your in-kind donations. The best CSR management tools will help you inventory all your in-kind donations while easily calculating the total value of your corporate in-kind giving. Tools like DonationXchange allow you to quickly export the total amount of your in-kind donation as well as use its in-kind inventory tracking software to know exactly what stage each donation is at. 

Software That Tracks Your Sponsorships and Grants

Make sure that your CSR management software also helps you track your sponsorships and grants. Tools like DonationXchange help you collect all of the data from your sponsorships and grants including total amount given and makes it easy to export that information into a CSR report. You can even track employee giving and company match amounts to build a more comprehensive view of how your company as a whole is making a powerful impact in your community. 

Software That Allows Custom Reporting

Building custom reports in your CSR management software is an important capability to save you time and help you represent the work of your CSR program well. DonationXchange allows you to customize your report with key metrics to make your reporting easier. Consider customizing based on certain categories, time frames, or other ways to divide your CSR program into smaller, easier-to-understand pieces.


Learn About DX's Philanthropy Management Platform Tools:

DonationXchange Features:
• Create & Track Fundraisers, Scholarships, Grants & More!
• Manage & Grow Donor Base     
• Process, Track, and Analyze Donation Requests
• Manage Volunteer Opportunities   
• Supercharge Employee Engagement
• Champion the Causes that Matter to YOU!