onHand founder, Sanjay Lobo
onHand founder, Sanjay Lobo

Employee volunteering app reveals North East investment plans after £1m fundraise

A UK volunteering app has announced that it has secured £1m of funding as it aims to invest in the North East and expand across the UK.

onHand, which offers businesses a way to engage and support employee wellbeing, has received the funding through an investment round led by North East-based Northstar Ventures.

Backed by Northstar Ventures, UK Research and Innovation and the co-founder of Shazam, the funds will enable onHand to further invest in its tech in the North East and expand its reach across the UK.

In the North East, the app is already being used by partner Newcastle Building Society, with employees of the Society having already completed over 1,000 regional missions to help local communities.

A new study conducted in association with The National Innovation Centre for Ageing shows micro-volunteering with onHand has boosted employee wellbeing by 80 per cent.

Sanjay Lobo, onHand’s founder, commented: “According to Deloitte, 77 per cent of employees say volunteering is “essential” to employee wellbeing.

“The problem is only 38 per cent agree their employer supports their volunteering needs with engaging solutions.

“In the last year, Deloitte also found an “unprecedented” rise in employee loyalty for organisations that meet their employees’ need for purpose.

“That’s a trend that will only increase: the companies that will win in the future are those focused on responsible business and the shift to profit with purpose.

“We’re making that transition simple for all forward-thinking businesses, fulfilling multiple employee wellbeing needs at the same time.”

Dominic Endicott from NorthStar Ventures added: “In the UK alone there are up to 20 million potential volunteers and 10 million care recipients or caregivers, urgently needing support.

“onHand is the first cloud platform to enable volunteers and those needing support to be matched via an app.

“Employers know that volunteering improves the satisfaction and ultimately the productivity of their employees, and thus are key partners in onHand’s rapid UK expansion.

“We are excited to become an early investor in onHand’s journey, and for the North East of England to become an exemplar region for onHand.”

Set up in collaboration with 6 UK charities, the app looks to combat some of society’s biggest challenges by matching employees with activities such as food waste and homelessness, befriending phone calls to tackle loneliness, simple tasks to support the elderly like shop drops, youth mentoring in BAME communities and eco clean up missions across the UK.

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