Digital strategy in the charity sector: a matter of who you know?

A recent article in the Guardian’s voluntary sector network by Zoe Amar outlines the sale of the challenges that charity sector faces as it adapts to the digital technologies. Many see the digital era as a game-changer for charities affecting every aspect of their operations, and yet the commentators quoted in Amar’s article suggest that the vision to make the necessary organizational changes and the skills needed to do so are in relatively short supply across the sector to the extent that some risk digital illiteracy and even obsolescence. The Lloyds Bank UK Business Digital Index for 2015 cited in the article tells a troubling story about the charity sector. According to this report the number of charities reporting lacking digital skills actually increased between 2014 and 2015, from 55% to 58%. Both scarcity of skills and lack of understanding of the relevance of digital opportunities are seen as to blame for the relative lack of digital maturity found in the charity sector as compared to other industry sectors. Amar’s article suggests that recruiting digitally savvy trustees to help build forward-thinking strategies and preparing to be both visionary and agile may be the answer for the charity sector.


1 thought on “Digital strategy in the charity sector: a matter of who you know?

  1. Turning this aim of bringing ‘savvy’ volunteers to the charity sector on its head, I think it is important to recognise that many individuals work in the voluntary sector as a way of either giving back something or (re)building their own career prospects. For different volunteer expectations it is important to have different digital strategies. Am close to people who want to rebuild their careers after mental illnesses or maternity. They can bring some good skills but they need support to restart from where they were before. If technology moves so quickly, strategy would need not only to rely on them but to develop some sort of hybrid support so that both charities and volunteers advance. This would be different that just expecting charities to catch up as expected with the private sector. Re-starting volunteers (which might also include middle age individuals in search of a career break) might need to be supported and recognised by developing this type of hybrid skills that combine the old with the new

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s