Umpqua Bank, a subsidiary of Umpqua Holdings Corporation (NASDAQ:UMPQ), set new marks for community engagement, with 2,175 of the company’s associates volunteering 46,730 hours to 1,757 organizations across four states. Just one year after setting a new industry standard with 90% participation and more than 45,000 hours of service, 93% of Umpqua Bank associates in Oregon, Washington, California and Nevada actively volunteered in 2012. “At Umpqua, we believe we have an obligation to give back, and that being a good corporate citizen begins with making it possible for our associates to serve our communities actively,” said Ray Davis, president and CEO of Umpqua Bank. “Our Connect Volunteer Network is a benefit Umpqua associates across all divisions and levels value, and their generosity and passion is an inspiration.” When compared to national averages for employer-supported service activities, Umpqua Bank’s participation almost triples the highest ranges, as compared to 2011/2 figures from the Carroll School of Management Center for Corporate Citizenship at Boston College. Umpqua Bank attributes the success of the Connect program to three primary areas of focus:
- Culture Fit – Volunteer programs should be a natural extension of a company’s culture, reinforcing the organization’s strengths and points of differentiation. Establishing a volunteer program as a core value is key to making it a priority for employees.
- Executive Ambassadors – Successful volunteer programs have strong executive support, with executives actively setting an example by participating themselves. This top-down approach has proven successful in launching and retaining corporate volunteer programs.
- Easy to Use – Creating a program that is embedded into a company’s operations, allows for easy participation and shows the impact for the effort is critical to achieving high employee involvement.
Through the Connect Volunteer Network™, Umpqua associates are given the opportunity to choose the organization where they would like to be involved. Associates participate in a variety of activities such as spending time in schools, engaging in mentoring projects or dedicating their time to local food banks. Umpqua associates continually rank the Connect program as one of the bank’s most-valued employee benefits and nearly one-third of its participants say the program was their initial introduction to volunteerism.Connect has been cited as a key factor in Umpqua’s inclusion on FORTUNE Magazine’s list of the country’s “100 Best Companies to Work For” the past seven years. In 2012, Umpqua associates served a wide variety of organizations and schools across the company’s footprint, including Junior Achievement, Dress for Success, Habitat for Humanity, Wounded Warrior Project. About Umpqua Bank Umpqua Bank, headquartered in Roseburg, Ore., is a subsidiary of Umpqua Holdings Corporation with locations between San Francisco and Seattle, along the Oregon and Northern California Coast, and in Central Oregon and Northern Nevada. Umpqua Bank has been recognized for its innovative customer experience and banking strategy by national publications including The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, BusinessWeek, Fast Company and CNBC. The company has been recognized for the past seven years in a row on FORTUNE magazine’s list of the country’s “100 Best Companies to Work For,” and was recently named by The Portland Business Journal, for the eighth consecutive year, Most Admired Financial Services Company in Oregon, and the state’s fifth-most admired company overall for 2012. Umpqua Holdings also owns a retail brokerage subsidiary, Umpqua Investments, Inc., which offers services through Umpqua Bank stores and in dedicated offices throughout Oregon. Umpqua’s Wealth Management Division serves high net worth individuals and nonprofits by providing customized financial solutions and offerings. Umpqua Holdings Corporation is headquartered in Portland, Ore. For more information, visit http://www.umpquabank.com.