Corporate Gifting in 2024: what is it, why it matters, getting started

Corporate Gifting in 2024: what is it, why it matters, getting started

Corporate gifting is essentially what it sounds like—a practice where companies give gifts to employees, clients, or other businesses. 

But it's not about the personal gifts you'd pick out for family or friends on special occasions. In the business world, it's a strategic move aimed at strengthening professional relationships. Let's talk about the kinds of gifts we're discussing here:


  • Birthday presents for employees
  • Holiday and Christmas gifts to spread cheer
  • Rewards for professional milestones
  • Tokens of appreciation for clients
  • Welcome gifts for new hires or clients
  • Anniversary gifts celebrating tenure or partnership

Why Does Sustainable Gifting Matter?

It's well-known that corporate gifting can sometimes (most times) be a bit of a miss, falling into the trap of being either wasteful or generic and impersonal. 

20% of employee gifts end up in the trash

A 2019 study by the Ad Specialty Institute found only 21% of corporate gifts are kept and that about 23% of employee gifts end up in the trash, which doesn't help our growing landfill problem. And most of the time, the rest are regifted. 

Getting a gift that feels low-quality can make employees wonder if the company really cares about them–and question the company’s values altogether. There is another way, however, to reinvent this narrative through sustainable gifting. 

Imagine choosing a gift, like a stylish backpack or a unique shirt, that not only looks great but also carries a powerful message about supporting vulnerable communities and protecting our planet. Sustainable corporate gifting focuses on items that are produced responsibly, ensuring that each gift also contributes to a greater good.


What Is the Impact of Sustainable Corporate Gifting?

The importance of sustainable gifting has never been more important than it is today, and here's why:


Happy Employees

The modern workforce, especially Millennials and Gen Z, values alignment between their personal beliefs and their employer's values. For example, embracing initiatives like sustainable fashion and circular design demonstrates a company's commitment to social and environmental responsibility. Companies that showcase a commitment to making a positive impact often enjoy higher employee satisfaction, retention, and advocacy.


Clients Appreciate It

In a world where consumers are more conscious of ethical practices, businesses that demonstrate care for more than just profit stand out. Sustainable gifts show clients that a company is mindful of its social and environmental footprint.


Good for People

Many sustainable gifts support social missions, MADE FREE for example is on a mission to end poverty or combating human trafficking. By selecting gifting employees with products that represent a mission, companies contribute to these causes, amplifying their impact.


Good for the Planet  

Opting for eco-friendly gifts is a step towards mitigating environmental issues, aligning with the global effort to preserve our planet for future generations. Choosing products that are high quality, support social causes, protect the environment, and will actually be meaningful to your employees? You’re checking all the boxes. 


Starting Your Sustainable Gifting Program 

Launching a sustainable gifting program is simpler than you might think. Start by exploring products made with integrity and a commitment to the environment. Here are a few questions businesses can ask to verify:


1. What are the sourcing practices?

  • Ask about the origin of materials used in the products. Ensure that the resources are sustainably sourced and that the supplier has transparent supply chains.


2. Are the products ethically made?

  • Inquire about the working conditions in the factories or workshops where the products are made. Look for assurances that workers are treated fairly, work in safe conditions, and receive fair wages.
  • Check to see if they meet or exceed the World Fair trade Organizations (WFTO) standards.


3. What environmental certifications do you hold?

  • Check if the products or the company have any environmental certifications (such as FSC for paper products, GOTS for textiles, or B Corp for overall corporate social responsibility practices) that validate their commitment to environmental sustainability.


4. Can the products be recycled or composted at the end of their life?

  • Verify if the products are designed with end-of-life in mind, ensuring they can be easily recycled, composted, or responsibly disposed of.


5. Do you support any social or environmental causes?

  • Ask about their mission and how they contribute to social or environmental causes. Ask if a portion of the proceeds goes to any charitable causes or if they engage in community uplifting projects.


6. How do you ensure product quality and longevity?

  • Sustainable gifting also means giving items that last, reducing the need for frequent replacements. Ask about the product's durability and any guarantees or warranties offered.


Customize Your Corporate Gifting with MADE FREE

joyful employees wearing corporate gifting swag

Chicago Coffee Shop ‘My Half of the Sky’ in their customized Aprons.


Does your swag change the world? 

For businesses, both small and large, eager to enhance their corporate social responsibility (CSR) profile through corporate gifting, MADE FREE offers a compelling avenue.  Our sustainable products are designed not just to delight your employees and clients, but also to embody the values of corporate citizenship.


We invite you to shop our corporate swag and more and consider customizing your orders. Send us your logo or corporate branding, and we’ll customize your picks with embroidery, embossing, or screen printing. It’s not just a gift; it’s a way to show your brand cares.




Wrapping It Up

Sustainable corporate gifting is more than just a trend; it's a way for businesses to show they care about the world and the people in it. By choosing gifts that help the planet and support good causes, companies can make a real difference.

Plus, it's a great way to make employees and clients happy. So, let's make every gift count for something good in 2024! 



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