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How Ancestry® used Uber Eats to give back to employees and nonprofits

October 15, 2021 / US

Ancestry® is the global leader in family history and consumer genomics, and people are at the center of everything they do. The company enables people to research their family histories with over 27 billion records ranging from US Census and military records to ship manifests and other historical documents. To date, more than 100 million family trees have been built using the company’s tools. The company’s AncestryDNA kit enables customers to research their genetic background and the locations where their ancestors resided. When combined, the records and genealogical information create a powerful picture of a person’s unique history.

This laser focus on people extends beyond Ancestry’s business and permeates the way they approach employee engagement. Traditionally the company hosts popular holiday events for their employees based in offices around the globe. Due to COVID-19, it was clear this would not be possible in 2020. 

“We went back to the drawing board and had a great discussion about what makes these gatherings so special to our team. We realized that what employees value most is the celebration of their hard work, recognition of their loved ones’ support, and team camaraderie. Once we had this baseline, the challenge was how to recreate it in a virtual setting,” says Evan Wittenberg, Chief People Officer at Ancestry.

Holiday spirit in action

After connecting with Uber for Business, the Ancestry team put together the generous “Enjoy a Meal, Give a Meal” program and announced it in a company all-hands meeting. Each of the 1,400 employees in the US received a $75 Uber Eats gift card to enjoy with loved ones. In addition, a total of $75,000 was collectively donated to hunger-focused nonprofits in cities where the company has offices, in honor of the employees. The Utah Food Bank, SF-Marin Food Bank, Crosscare in Dublin, and The Connection at St. Martin’s in London all benefited from the company’s generosity.

“As a human-centric company, our employees are at the heart of everything we do. When we realized we couldn’t host holiday events last year, it was important to still recognize employees in a meaningful way,” says Wittenberg. “Working with Uber for Business on the gift card side of things made it a very light lift for us.”

Morale booster

Ancestry’s employees were thrilled with the unique program, and their feedback was uniformly and overwhelmingly positive. 

“After such a trying year for people, it was great to come up with a creative way to energize our employees while also giving back to our local communities,” adds Wittenberg.