LinkedIn’s New Volunteer Marketplace to Boost Non-profit Space

Association of Business Training
January 22, 2014 — 1,009 views  

In a move to engage with the non-profit space, LinkedIn has added a new Volunteer Marketplace where its members can search for opportunities to take up some form of volunteer work. The site will also suggest this option as part of emails that its members receive for job postings.

While LinkedIn charges firms a fee in the range of $400 for a month to post openings, non-profit groups will be charged much less – in fact a whopping 90% discount, according to the social media group for job seekers and professionals.

Greater Engagement with the Youth

Getting people to sign up for volunteer work is also a way of engaging with youngsters – the indirect benefit is that more and more youngsters are likely to take to the site. Even those who are not active job seekers or professionals can now engage with LinkedIn, boosting the site’s popularity and credentials.

LinkedIn has over 250 million members who now have a chance to contribute to a variety of causes. Also, this new feature is one of the several measures taken by the company to emphasize the importance of volunteering – the company has provided the option of adding causes and volunteering work to user profiles. Over three million LinkedIn members have included this section in their profile.

In 2012, LinkedIn also added a feature called Board Connect which was directed at encouraging non-profits to find board members through the site. LinkedIn started its wing for giving back to society by way of its LinkedIn for Good, which started in 2010.

How the Idea Came About

Reid Hoffman, co-founder of LinkedIn and venture capitalist, explains how the idea of the Volunteer Marketplace came about on the social networking site’s blog. He cites a true story where a shelter needed the help of an architect to expand its space, while the architect had resolved to be part of a non-profit’s board. The story, Hoffman said, inspired him and his colleagues to start Volunteer Marketplace because “there are hundreds of thousands of ‘non-profit needs’ in the world, and even more professionals who want to donate their skills to help meet these needs.”

Over six million people have indicated that they would be interested in serving on a non-profit’s board or take up volunteer work in some form. Hoffman also adds that LinkedIn is partnering with organizations such as Catchafire, Taproot Foundation, BoardSource and VolunteerMatch.

Association of Business Training