At VertiSource HR®, one of our core values is ensuring our client partners can always reach us, not get trapped in an automated phone system.

The personal attention we give our client partners is paramount to our joint success. Combined with our Human Resource Information System (HRIS), which allows companies to manage all their employee critical data at the touch of a mouse, we are the #HumanTouch of HR Automation, a moniker we are proud of.

Over the next few weeks, we are featuring VertiSource HR® employees who volunteer for causes they are passionate about. What is truly exceptional about our employees is their commitment to lending a helping hand, not only to our client partners, but also in their local communities.

We recently sat down with VertiSource HR®’s LeiLani Quiray, Director of HR, to discuss her background in philanthropy and to get some ideas on how small and large business can get involved in their communities. Get inspired by her story…you never know, this may be your new calling 😉

VertiSource HR® Blogger (VB): Can you tell us a little about your professional background?
LeiLani Quiray (LQ): I’ve done HR my entire adult (and some of my teens)!  Our neighbors asked me if I wanted to do payroll for their construction company. I got paid $3.75 per hour, btw….pennies! Here I am nearly 20 years later still in the same field and I love it!

VB:What inspired you to get involved in philanthropic work?
LQ: As a child, my parents encouraged volunteer work.  I remember food drives, soup kitchens, animal shelters, clothing the homeless and as I grew into a young adult I started volunteering at the senior centers (I’m terrible at chess and checkers so I bet those seniors loved playing against me) as well as at a children’s home for abused and neglected children.  This carried into my adult life and now I volunteer for Working Wardrobes, a nonprofit that  assists survivors of domestic violence and other adults in crisis by preparing them to reenter the workforce.  I’m one of their Success Coaches (fancy title for someone who teaches a class on self-esteem building and job applicants skills) and pretty soon I will be teaching a class on social media presence as it relates to finding a job.  You should come to my class if you’re in So Cal! Along with my years of volunteer work there, I’ve also done resume workshops at WHW as well as clothing the homeless on skid row via The Row Church.

VBHas volunteering in your community changed your perception of the community and its needs?
LQ: Totally but then again how can helping someone in need not change your perception of the world around you?  We all needed a helping hand at one point in our lives…it’s important to return the favor and help someone else out.  Pay it forward.  Our communities need it.

VBHas your philanthropic work improved other aspects of your personal and professional life? i.e. better listener, more initiative, etc.
LQ: I think it’s provided me with a humbler approach to all aspects of life, a more positive outlook when times are tough and a great appreciation for the life I’ve been blessed with.  It’s all about perspective.

VBWhat are some of the most memorable moments you’ve experienced volunteering?
LQ: I had my son gather together clothing he didn’t want any more to personally hand out to the homeless.  I watched him go through the clothing to offer his pants and shirts to homeless men with a giving smile on his face and when he finished he said, “That was humbling.”  His heart was touched as was mine.  What you remember most is the look in someone’s eye when you know you truly helped them. Those are my favorite moments.

VBWhat advice would you give to someone considering philanthropic work?
LQ: Do it!  Find something your passionate about that touches your heart and go volunteer your time and/or money to it.

VBIn what ways would you say group philanthropy elevates a company and its culture?
LQ: I believe corporations, like people, are responsible to help the community through philanthropic work.  I’ve seen companies promote ride-share programsorganize a beach cleanup, or chose a specific cause and lend its workforce to help that cause.  Another great idea is an allotment for paid time off specifically for volunteering.  However a company decides to exercise its corporate responsibility to the community, it shows its employees not only does it care for them, it cares for the community at hand.

A big THANKS to LeiLani for lending us her time! Please share this article and get others inspired to give-back!