With the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic, many charities were forced to accelerate adoption of digital ways of working. Charities rose to the challenge to keep delivering their services in new ways but now there is a real need to properly integrate these digital ways of working. What was once quick solutions now need to be integrated within the culture of the charity and fully embraced to get the best ROI possible.
To properly integrate digital ways of working in your charity you need to take a holistic view across People, Processes, and Systems to make sure everything is aligned.
Step One – People
No matter how good your processes or systems are, without the buy-in from people there can be no integration. People are known to resist change, and this is especially true for drastic change when it comes to how they do their job. They can push back, argue, and even refuse to work with any new systems that are put in place.
To avoid this, you want to make sure you have open dialogue with all members who are likely to be impacted by change. This means seeking their opinion, finding out what issues or concerns they have, and addressing them early.
You want to highlight the short comings of how things currently are and show how integrating digital ways of working will help to solve these problems. Emphasis the benefits, like how it will help make their job easier as well as ensure that the charity can continue to deliver for service users.
Step Two – Processes
To integrate digital ways of working in your charity you need to look at the processes that underpin how your charity works. Understanding how you operate is vital to see where digital ways of working would allow you to be more efficient or possibly even radicalise how you deliver services.
For example, a charity that offers support for children with special needs will have processes of how the service user is onboarded, cared for, and the success is reported on. This can be a complex process with lots of individuals involved. A simple problem may be the reliance on notes that are handwritten and filed at the main office. You now have people who must travel back and forward to the office, try to decipher handwriting, and then rely on not losing any of the notes when traveling. This could be improved by having digital ways of working that allows notes to be taken on a device and shared with other people who work on the case.
This is a simple change but can completely change the processes that people are used to following. Therefore, you need to know both your current ways of working, your “As Is”, as well as your future “To Be” state so you can make decisions about where digital ways of working will have the best impact.
Step Three – Systems
Integrating a new system into your charity can be incredibly difficult. Even if you have addressed people and processes, the technical aspect of implementing a system can cause no end of headaches.
Many charities will be happy to just get a new system up and running without checking to see if it is integrated properly. This means delivering more than basic functionality and working with other systems that already exist. The system should be working for you and not causing you to bend processes out of shape to make it work.
Conclusion to How to Integrate Digital Ways of Working in Your Charity
To integrate digital ways of working within your charity you must look across People, Processes, and Systems to ensure everything is working together. Get your people onboard with change, your processes defined, and systems supporting you to ensure a real integration of digital ways of working.
If you could benefit from some support around any of these areas or are looking to start your digital transformation journey, then get in touch with us today to see how we can help.