5 For The Fight: Crowdfunding The Fight Against Cancer

Qualtrics is best known for launching the experience management (XM) category, helping organizations provide amazing experiences for their customers and employees and with their products and brands.


One in five men and one in six women worldwide develop cancer during
their lifetime, and one in eight men and one in 11 women die from the disease.

– World Health Organization


What you might not know is that Qualtrics is also tackling one of the worst human experiences: cancer, the second leading cause of death in the world, with more than 18 million new cases and 9.6 million deaths in 2018 alone.

From the Very Beginning

“Creating a cure for cancer isn’t just something Qualtrics is dedicated to, it’s embedded in the company’s DNA. In many ways, Qualtrics started as a result of cancer,” said Ryan Smith, co-founder and CEO of Qualtrics. “My dad Scott was diagnosed with what we thought would be terminal cancer. When I heard the news, I quit my internship and moved home to be with him. To spend time together during his treatments, we started working on a tech project together and vowed that if it ever turned into anything, we would support cancer research.”

That “tech project” became Qualtrics, the platform used by the world’s most iconic companies to deliver breakthrough experiences. Over the years, Qualtrics donated regularly to cancer research and eventually 5 For The Fight was born.

5 For The Fight

5 For The Fight is based on a simple concept: Everyone can give $5 for the fight against cancer. What started out as a personal journey and a commitment between Qualtrics founders has developed into a growing corporate crowdfunding effort to beat cancer.

With the 5 For The Fight employee giving program, Qualtrics invites every employee to join the fight against cancer by donating $5 from each paycheck.

Qualtrics covers all administrative costs to run 5 For The Fight, which ensures that 100 percent of every donation goes directly to supporting groundbreaking cancer research. These $5 donations result in millions of dollars of funding to fuel researchers on the front lines who are working tirelessly to defeat this disease. In less than two years, 5 For The Fight has funded seven cancer researchers throughout North America and Ireland.

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“It’s the simplicity of 5 For The Fight that makes it so powerful,” said Mike Maughan, co-founder of 5 For The Fight and head of Global Insights at Qualtrics. “Everyone has been impacted by cancer one way or another. That is why we encourage everyone who donates to dedicate their $5 in honor of someone who has fought or is fighting the disease. You write the name of the person on the palm of your hand and post a picture on social media saying who your $5 is for.”

In 2017, Qualtrics decided to sponsor the jersey patch for the NBA’s Utah Jazz. But instead of putting the Qualtrics logo on the patch, they donated it to 5 For The Fight. This is the first-ever sponsorship of its kind in North America and has helped to scale the cause beyond the walls of Qualtrics and throughout the world. Now, 5 For The Fight offers employees at any company to take on the cause and make it their own to raise funds for cancer research by leveraging 5 For The Fight and the Qualtrics platform.

United in the Fight Against Cancer

With SAP, Qualtrics unites for a common purpose to further expand 5 For The Fight globally. SAP CEO Bill McDermott and Smith bonded immediately over their devotion to the cause, with McDermott telling Qualtrics employees: “You just gained more than 96,000 people in the 5 For The Fight army.”

Bill McDermott – 5 For The Fight

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“We’re just getting started,” Smith said. “With SAP, 5 For The Fight is continuing to gain massive scale overnight. We couldn’t be more excited about having SAP join 5 For The Fight in our efforts to create a cure for cancer.”

To learn more about 5 For The Fight, including starting an employee giving program at your organization, visit 5ForTheFight.org or contact hello@5forthefight.org.


Lori Kun is head of Social Impact at Qualtrics.