13 Free Ways to Give Back

13 Ways to Give Back

Too busy? Not enough time to volunteer? Not enough spare change to make a donation? We understand. Here’s 13 easy ways to give back without impacting your schedule or your wallet.

Where to Buy

  1. Raise money for charities when you shop online using platforms like AmazonSmile or ShoppingGives. They enable you to give back to a designated charity. They receive a donation for every purchase you make.
  2. Purchase gifts that make an impact by purchasing gifts that also give back!
  3. Reduce your carbon footprint and give your local economy a boost by shopping local. Research suggests that every $1 spent at a locally owned business creates $3.50 of value in the local economy.
  4. Shop farmers markets to further reduce your carbon and support local farmers. If you can’t find it, check out Whole Foods, which makes it part of their mission to support local farmers by sourcing a variety of items within a limited radius of their stores.

What You Buy

  1. Socks are a necessity. And a good pair of socks is a game changer.  Next time you’re replacing those socks with the hole in the big toe, check out the selection at Bombas Socks. The most requested clothing item at homeless shelters is socks, and Bombas donates a pair of socks for every pair purchased!
  2. Support charities while grocery shopping by selectively choosing products. Companies like Newman’s Own believe in donating “100% of Profits to Charity.” Next time you’re debating between bottles of ranch, jars of spaghetti sauce, or frozen pizzas, look for the Newman’s Own label and make an impact.
  3. Buy Toms shoes. Toms has been a leader in the corporate social responsibility movement for a long time, donating a pair of shoes for every pair purchased.
  4. Everyone needs dish soap to wash their pots and pans. Look for Procter & Gamble, who has launched the Fairy Ocean Plastic bottle, made from 100% post-consumer recycled and ocean plastic. Their campaign aims to raise awareness of the issue of plastic use and the resulting damage it does to our waterways and oceans.
  5. What do we all need, all buy, and all use every day? Toilet Paper! Who gives a Crap is a quality toilet paper company that reduces the impacts of deforestation by using environmentally friendly materials. They also donate 50% of their profits to help build toilets for those in need.
  6. Goodbye plastic, hello bamboo! Put some shine behind your smile by using MABLE toothbrushes, which have a biodegradable handle, plastic-free packaging, and non-toxic ingredients. They donate one toothbrush for every brush bought, and conduct outreach to teach kids about dental health and sustainability.

After You Buy

  1. Soda POP! Ronald McDonald House puts soda can tabs to charitable use with their Pop-Tab Program. After finishing your favorite soda, save the tabs and donate them to the Ronald McDonald House. The program recycles the tabs and uses the proceeds to help cover the costs of local accommodations for families whose kids are being treated at a Ronald McDonald Hospital.
  2. Don’t recycle that empty cereal box just yet. Before you do, be sure to cut off and collect Box Tops coupons to support education at your local schools. Most schools have a collection box where you can deposit the tops, where they are then traded into General Mills in exchange for money towards school needs.
  3. Filter through that closet and throw away that t-shirt you haven’t worn since 2008. Many homeless shelters will pick up your unwanted clothing and donate them to those in need. You can also find local Homeless Shelter donation spots and drop off your used clothing! Help make a difference in someone else’s life with a simple donation of something you’re not using anymore.

Every day presents a number of opportunities to make conscious, caring, and responsible decisions. Making a simple switch with your daily decisions, you can make a big difference without spending extra time or money. When you do good, you feel good!

 

About Ad Victoriam Solutions

Ad Victoriam is a Salesforce Platinum Partner and a MuleSoft partner who provides mission-critical consulting services, from strategy to implementation. Our nimble team of certified professionals across the country who accelerate businesses by solving complex problems through cloud and data expertise. As a certified B Corp, we put purpose over profits, and have made a strong commitment to community. Contact Ad Victoriam for all of your Salesforce needs. 

 

Responsible Sourcing to Support the Earth

Research indicates that workplace design has an impact on your mental health and wellbeing. It also has an impact on the earth. We built a workspace that positively impacted both.

After the initial move in day, we began to do what all companies do. We bought furniture, desks, chairs and a lot more. The office was nice, but didn’t really represent our uniqueness. About two years after our move, we decided to transform our space into something that is true to who we are, and did so in a manner that aligns with what we value.

Blu Interiors, a full-service, female-owned, interior design group founded with a mission to provide well-conceived, functional design plans was hired to improve the Ad Victoriam headquarters. With Blu Interiors, we not only created a productive, open, and inspiring place to work, we were also able to reduce our environmental impact.

Responsible, Inclusive, and Local Sourcing

Female-owned or local companies were chosen:

  • The design firm and furniture brokers were women-owned businesses.
  • The construction company and drapery designer were both local.
  • Our new Ad Victoriam Solutions sign in the lobby was manufactured in Atlanta, Georgia.
  • The Bulldog artwork displayed in our office was commissioned by an artist in Athens, Georgia.

Eco-friendly materials were purchased:

  • Filzfelt, 100% biodegradable and renewable sheeps wool, was used to soundproof our meeting rooms.
  • Our new whiteboards are made from Clarus glass. They are manufactured with Declare, Environmental Product Declaration, and Indoor Air Quality Certifications.
  • Our bathroom counters are ISO 14001 Certified, the carpeting is Cradle to Cradle Certified and the furniture is GreenGuard Gold Certified, making all of these items environmentally friendly.
  • Replaced all light bulbs with LED bulbs and added motion sensors so lights turn on when someone enters the space and turn off after 10 minutes without motion.
  • Added motion detected one-sheet paper towel dispensers to decrease waste.
  • Installed low-flow toilets and motion activated sinks to reduce our water waste.

Finally, a local moving company was hired to help us donate our used office furniture to two non-profit organizations, Lifeline Animal Shelter and Habitat for Humanity.

We’re not changing the world, but we are making an impact. It’s a small B Corp ripple, but a ripple worth making. And, if we can inspire other companies and individuals to consider environmental impact in their purchasing decisions, the scales will start tilting in the right direction.

About Ad Victoriam Solutions

Ad Victoriam is a Salesforce Platinum Partner and a MuleSoft partner who provides mission-critical consulting services, from strategy to implementation. Our nimble team of certified professionals across the country who accelerate businesses by solving complex problems through cloud and data expertise. As a certified B Corp, we put purpose over profits, and have made a strong commitment to community.

We Vote for Diversity & Inclusion

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Diversity and inclusion can vary by industry. For example, positions within certain industries, such as healthcare, are primarily held by women, whereas, technology positions are occupied largely by men. In fact, 76% of the technology jobs are held by men, with 95% of the team being Caucasian.

According to an article published in the Harvard Business Review, states that non-homogenous teams are simply smarter.” And noted that, a study published in Innovation: Management, Policy & Practice, found “that companies with more women were more likely to introduce radical new innovations into the market over a two-year period.” In addition to the evidence that diversity and inclusion are good business practices, we believe it is also a good people practice. Here are some of the lessons we’ve learned and solutions we’ve implemented. 

Effectively Targeting Diversity in our Recruitment Strategy

In 2018, we started recruiting at the University of Georgia for our new Elevate program, an entry-level program that hires and trains recent graduates on Salesforce Consulting. In our first outreach, we received resumes primarily from Caucasian males. As a result, we wondered how we could increase the diversity of our candidates.

As a result, we evaluated and modified our job descriptions to increase the likelihood of attracting diverse candidates. We were happy to receive more than 50 resumes from individuals with diverse backgrounds. Our modifications drew in 4 times as many women and 2 times as many underrepresented minorities.

Changing the Future of Diversity & Inclusion

People often say that the definition of insanity is doing the same thing and expecting different results. Our efforts to recruit and hire a diverse workforce are constrained by the number of diverse candidates. In an effort to work toward a long-term solution, we are building relationships with organizations who support inclusivity.

Recently, our team spoke to the UGA Women in Technology Chapter about navigating a career in the tech industry, balancing work and family, and breaking down organizational biases they may encounter. We are in the planning stage to hold similar events on campuses across the Southeast.

Diversity isn’t a checkbox for AdVic. While worthwhile and valuable as a KPI, it needs to be more, and mean more. Diversity attempts often fail. They failed because they focus only on diversity while forgetting inclusion. Respecting each other, listening to ideas, including each other in conversations and decisions, that what is true inclusion.

 

In addition to doing good for the world, our Ad Victoriam Solutions Salesforce Consultants work as a dedicated, innovative team of problem solvers, taking on your technology challenges. We are Salesforce cloud and data consultants who customize our approach to suit your processes for increased efficiency, accelerated productivity and scalability. Contact us to learn how we can help your business flourish. 

Vote Every Day with Each Dollar

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Have you heard of the Vote Every Day campaign? It doesn’t mean to actually cast a vote for a politician. B Corp created the campaign to encourage people, like you and me, to treat every dollar we spend on purchases like a vote, and every cash register like a ballot box. As a result, Ad Victoriam Solutions (AdVic) now strives to cast votes when engaging with a new vendor. This year, we spent more dollars with companies that use their business as a force for good.

Companies who have a stated commitment to serve their employees, their communities, and their customers are considered when we need a service or a product. We give preference to diverse and inclusive companies, especially female and minority owned businesses. In 2018, these easy steps transformed our supply chain to include more sustainable and inclusive vendors.

AdVic “Voted” with these Vendors

Atalassian. A founding member of the Pledge 1% movement, Atalassian makes the Jira project management software we use to manage our consulting engagements.

Bottlecloth. Between 4 and 5 times a year, our Atlanta-based team prepares lunches for the Smart Lunch, Smart Kids program. Previously, we used plastic, single-use tablecloths. We now use multi-use tablecloths from Bottlecloth, a female-owned business, which are made from recycled plastic bottles.

Blu Interiors. The genius behind the beauty of our newly remodeled (and environmentally friendly) office are the women at Blu Interiors. They worked with us on both phases of the remodel, which was vital to the success of this project.

Givily. A fellow B Corp out of New York, Givily is a female owned company that provides a technology solution to help companies manage charitable requests for in-kind donations, grants, and sponsorships.

The Lancaster Stroopie Company. In honor or World Kindness Day, we surprised our employees with a sweet treat from this outstanding B Corp. This female owned company out of Pennsylvania employs female refugees so they can establish a new life in America.

AdVic is proud to #VoteEveryDay by working with companies that give back and believe that profit can coexist with purpose. Voting with your dollars is an impactful way you can support the good in this world. Join us by making every purchase count!

 

In addition to doing good for the world, our Ad Victoriam Solutions Salesforce Consultants work as a dedicated, innovative team of problem solvers, taking on your technology challenges. We are Salesforce cloud and data consultants who customize our approach to suit your processes for increased efficiency, accelerated productivity and scalability. Contact us to learn how we can help your business flourish. 

Supporting Our Troops

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Many of us don’t notice the world outside of our own. We often journey robotically through our daily routines; wake up, drop off the kids, go to work, dinner, activities, bed …  repeat. The Ad Victoriam Solutions (AdVic) team stepped away from their daily routine of supporting our clients, to support our troops.

Our troops leave their spouses, children, friends and jobs to answer the call to something much bigger than themselves. The AdVic Georgia-based team assembled a large care package for our troops deployed overseas. The team purchased and shipped more than 75 pounds of essential goodies, such as razors, mouthwash, shampoo, and lotion and also some basic comforts of home, gum, candy, playing cards and beef jerky to the Georgia National Guard’s 48th Infantry Brigade Combat Team deployed abroad.

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We chose this particular combat team to support our our CTO, Brian Mize, who currently serves as their Battalion Chaplain to their more than 14,000 soldiers. Mize helps soldiers adjust to life overseas, providing guidance and counseling to our brave men and women protecting our freedom and the freedom of the local people. We want Mize to know how much he is missed, and hope that sending Mize goods to distribute to his Battalion will help him accomplish his mission as Chaplain.  

“We know Brian, and all of the troops, left behind loved ones and friends and the little comforts of home that we all take for granted. This is a small gesture, but we hope it brings a smile to their faces and reminds them how grateful we are. While we look forward to Brian’s safe return, we realize the importance of his current mission and are proud to call him our coworker, teammate and friend. And want to support him any way we can.”

If you or your company would like to organize a similar event to support our troops, contact us, we would be happy to help.

B Local Georgia goes Viral with Ad Victoriam Support

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It’s happening. B Local Georgia Chapter hosted its first public event at Sweetwater Brewery. Proudly sponsored by Ad Victoriam Solutions (AdVic), the event brought together 13 Georgia B Corps, seven prospective B Corp companies along with students and faculty from the University of Georgia. B Local Georgia is a grassroots organization that heightens awareness of the B Corp movement and inspires local businesses to use the power of business to support social and environmental causes. 

Why did Ad Victoriam’s CEO, Jeff Jones, support this event?

Nathan Stuck, Director of Corporate Culture shared, “When I asked Jeff, he didn’t hesitate. He knows how important it is to build B Local Georgia. Bringing awareness to the B Corp movement and encouraging other companies to join, is key to our B Corp commitment. We are dedicated to having an impact in the communities we serve. B Local enables us to multiply that impact.”

About B Local Georgia

B Local Georgia was founded in 2018 by Nathan Stuck and Scott Sadler, President of Boardwalk Capital Solutions. What began with a conversation over dinner is growing into a movement in the Peach State. After all the Georgia B Corps joined together for dinner in late 2018, they planned to host quarterly networking events. The events focus on sharing B Corp best practices, establishing alliances to multiply our impact, and helping companies align purpose with their profit. Working alongside the University of Georgia, B Local pledges to help every interested company join the B movement.

If you are interested in joining an upcoming event or have questions about B Corp in general, contact Nathan.Stuck@AdVictoriamSolutions.com. It’s a great time to be the change.

Charity & Salesforce: A Dream Come True

Working in the Salesforce ecosystem, you come across many inspiring stories. Meaghan Bookers’s story is one of them. Before stumbling across Salesforce, she spent 6 months living in India as a volunteer and the year after, she taught in an alternative school for at-risk students in Colorado. Take a moment to hear about how Meaghan’s journey to Salesforce and Ad Victoriam Solutions enabled her to combine career success with her passion for having an impact on the world.

When were you first introduced to Salesforce?

My first employer after teaching utilized Salesforce and I was asked to manage the platform – it was assigned to me after their admin left. It was a “learn under fire” experience. But, it was total luck, and good timing. I fell in love with the versatility of the platform and quickly wanted to dive deeper into the system. I became a sponge, soaking up as much as I could, and always wanting to learn more about how it worked.

What do you like most about the platform?

You can do so many different things with Salesforce and it is so user friendly. And, the biggest thing for me was the free training they provide through Trailhead.  It has been incredibly helpful as I grow my skillset, while also developing and learning on the platform through consulting work.

Did Salesforce change your career trajectory?

Definitely! It opened the door to the tech world without me having a tech degree. I’ve pursued this career path because it’s been a really fun career. Solving problems and creating solutions that help companies is so rewarding and motivating for me. And because I am passionate (to the core) about giving back, I proudly drink the Salesforce 1-1-1 (1% equity donated, 1% volunteer time donated, 1% profits donated) Kool-Aid. Love the fact that they are so dedicated to having an impact.

What attracted you to Ad Victoriam Solutions?

Ad Victoriam is a B Corp and because I had previously worked for another B Corp and knew what they stand for, this became a major selling point. In addition, throughout the interview process, I met so many people who were kind, passionate and professional. They embodied my expectations. This made me want to be a part of what they were building.

Charity and Salesforce at Ad Victoriam

Anything else you would like to share?  

I am proud to be part of the B Corp movement and thrilled I can continue my new exciting career with a company that culturally fits me. B Corp is built by people who own companies and believe that it is important to make money, sure. But, it is also important to be a good person in this world. And the fact that they are willing to donate their talents and resources, and also support their employees while they volunteer, is incredible. I am so energized to re-engage with my local B Corp community and build the Ad Victoriam “B Brand” in the Rocky Mountain State.

 

Alert: Upcoming Ad Victoriam Event

Join our complimentary 20-minute webinar on Salesforce Lightning.

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Salesforce Integration Propels Productivity

Salesforce Integration Propels Productivity

The Disciple Training School (DTS), deep in the heart of paradise, in Kona, Hawaii, which trains future missionaries, reached out to Ad Victoriam Solutions (AVS) to help their non-profit connect their systems and increase their efficiencies.

Known as leaders in the field of integrating disconnected systems and streamlining processes, we dispatched a team of three AVS consultants to Kona for a week – all for free – to implement and integrate Salesforce Sales Cloud and Salesforce Community Cloud which helped them reach their goals. Here’s how we accomplished our mission.

Salesforce Integration Customer Story
Problem

DTS was utilizing two disparate systems – a homegrown Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system and a security platform to enroll students into their program. Student enrollment and data management between their systems was time intensive and proved to be unreliable.

Solution: The Salesforce Platform

AVS implemented the Salesforce Platform to replace DTS’ complex homegrown CRM. AVS leveraged Heroku to integrate DTS’ Salesforce Sales Cloud with their security system enabling records to automatically be passed to their security system, along with a photo, so a student badge could be easily generated. As a result, enrollment time was reduced by 5 to 10 minutes for each of the more than 700 enrollees per semester.

To further enhance the DTS system, AVS designed a plug-in force.com component for the Salesforce Mobile app enabling the school’s security guards to view the students contact record in real-time, remotely. In addition to the student photo and status, the security guards are now able to activate and deactivate the student in the app itself.

Community Cloud Money Transfer
Problem

The DTS students are responsible for raising money to cover their schooling and daily needs. DTS wanted the students to have access to their accounts so they could manage their funds for tuition, supplies, and meals. In addition, as a mission-based program, students are given the opportunity to put money into their fellow students’ accounts to assist those who are struggling financially.

Solution: Salesforce Community Cloud

AVS created a multi-screen process guiding students through designated pages where they could make their own payments or donate to another student anonymously. They could choose the timing of their donation and the school for which the payment was to be paid. The DTS Community Cloud was made accessible through an iPad in the cafeteria and was multi-lingual to accommodate all of the students. The custom-coded solution uses Apex code along with Lightning Styles.

Salesforce Integration Mission Accomplished

Salesforce Integration Mission Accomplished

In the end, AVS created a scalable system that saves DTS valuable time, and is the foundation of an automation system that can easily be enhanced in the future.

Commenting on our solution for DTS, a spokesperson said, “The Ad Victoriam team was professional, personable, and incredibly enjoyable to work with! They spent time understanding our organization and made the custom solution that we needed – we are thrilled with the results! They were also a great resource for us – providing valuable input on how we can continue to improve as a University with our Salesforce implementation. As we say here in Hawaii – ‘mahalo nui loa’ (thank you very much)!”

If you are working with limited resources and need to increase productivity, contact us, we can help. We promise, we’ll chat and advice, not sell.

Fun Fact: Salesforce Co-CEO, Mark Benioff, drew his inspiration for Salesforce’s company-wide culture, or “Ohana,” from Hawaii. Ohana is a word that describes the Hawaiian concept of family, including blood relatives, adopted members, and intentionally chosen connections, and further reinforces the spirit of “Aloha.” Read more about Benioff’s initiative here.

B Corp Retreat: Purpose-Driven Mission Complete

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Furthering our B Corp purpose-driven mission to be a force for good, Ad Victoriam joined other Certified B Corporations in New Orleans to further our purpose-driven mission to be a force for good and to accomplish three goals.

We’ve returned and hope the following wisdom we experienced inspires you to consider joining the movement to work toward a better world.

3 Valuable Purpose-Driven Takeaways 

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Growing B Corp in Georgia. While not all the Georgia B Corps attend the retreat, we connected with Tripp Pomeroy, President of Café Campesino. His company gives back to Central and South America communities where his sustainable coffee beans are grown. We also met Mike Mannina from Thrive Farmers, a sustainable coffee roaster in Georgia. As a result, we have grown our B Local group to six members, held our first meeting, and planned our second.

 

BCorp Checkmark

New B Corp Lessons. We embarked on this trip, in part, to meet many of the folks who have helped us along our journey and to expand our B Corp Network.  Every breakfast table, breakout session, and happy hour was filled with folks willing to share their story. A session of charitable giving practices led by Givily CEO Amy Kauffman led to a revamping of our corporate mission and an updated charitable plan for 2019.

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Another session on leadership and activities sparked a wealth of ideas on both employee empowerment and developing Ad Victoriam’s next generation of leadership. We talked about emotions in the workplace, the importance of providing a safe space for feedback and having “difficult” conversations. Implementing the best practices shared within our company will positively impact our team members and clients as we move forward.

 

BCorp Checkmark

Raising the B Corp Bar in 2019. After listening to Gareth Hedges of Redwoods Group, who walked us through their journey to successfully navigate the 2018 Inclusive Economy Challenge, we signed up for the challenge! He spoke of creative team events and exercises, training programs, an unrelenting focus on increasing charitable work. His talk inspired us. We are now up for the challenge!

 

Ad Victoriam is Ready to Do More Good

This was an incredible experience for us as a new B Corp. We pledge to do more this next year. Do more in our communities. Do more for our employees. Do more for our planet. We would be happy to speak with you about possibly becoming a Certified B Corporation, especially if you are located in the Atlanta area. If interested, please reach out to our Community Engagement Director, Nathan Stuck.

We’re Excited: B Corp is Going to B-ourbon Street

B Corp Retreat

Our team is on their way to the B Corp Champion Retreat in New Orleans! Why? We returned from the B Summit with an abundance of new inspiring information that we just have to attend the retreat too. Here’s what we plan to share when we return:

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Our main goal is to learn best practices from more experienced B Corps on expanding the B Corp footprint in the greater Atlanta area. While we have some enthusiastic B Corp partners in Georgia, like Rubicon Global and GIVN Goods, our state is lagging behind the national movement with only nine certified B Corps. Ad Victoriam wants to change that. Through a collaborative effort with fellow B Corp Boardwalk Capital Management and the University of Georgia’s Full-Time MBA program, we’ve started a B Local in North Georgia to raise awareness and assist other companies interested in taking this important step.  Three of our board members will be present in New Orleans to absorb as much as possible on how we can help companies like yours improve their impact and join the movement.

New B Corp Lessons

One of the advantages of certifying as a B Corp is access to the B Hive website, a virtual meeting place for people to share ideas, best practices, and ways to improve your impact. After our certification, we often turned to these message boards to ask questions and seek advice from the community. We have been overwhelmed with the number of people who raised their hand to help.

Whether it was Jared Meyers of Salt Palm Development providing lessons learned on his B Local journey or Sheridan Howie of LuLu Press sending us an e-mail to initiate a connection, the network is supportive and giving.  The Champions Retreat will give us the chance to meet them in person and engage with a network of professionals who have lessons to share.

Raising the B Corp Bar in 2019

Like all companies, we have big growth plans for 2019. But we also have plans to further improve our impact and our B Corp assessment score. To effectively implement this goal, we will focus on learning more about B Lab’s Best for the World Challenge, which recognizes companies with assessment scores in the top 10% of all certified B Corps, and the Inclusive Economy Challenge, where companies aim to increase specific metrics within the assessment. Meeting companies who have successfully navigated these waters will go a long way in improving our impact. 

We’re excited. We’re inspired. We’re eager to become a better version of ourselves. Stay tuned for the results!

About B Corp
B Corps are for-profit companies certified by the nonprofit B Lab to meet rigorous standards of social and environmental performance, accountability, and transparency. Today, Ad Victoriam Solutions, along with the more than 2,200 other B Corps around the globe, is working toward one unifying goal — to redefine success in business.