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Helping charities continue to make a difference in the midst of COVID-19

Amidst all the stress of lockdown, it's been heartening to see some of the ways in which people have pulled together to support each other, and the work charities all over the UK have been doing to ensure the vulnerable are protected and the NHS receives the support it needs. However, as with many other sectors, COVID-19 has pushed many charities' IT infrastructures to their limit, as they are not only forced to adapt to the Government's remote working requirements, but also rethink their approach to fundraising.

With charity workers currently housebound, like the majority of the country, they are no longer able to generate funds in person, and are therefore reliant on effective remote communication with potential donors. Not only does this place considerable strain on their call centres, it puts smaller charities, who rely on face-to-face canvasing in a difficult position, as they are forced to reconsider how they utilise their IT budgets.

This is where a managed services model adds great value for charities – from small operations to global leaders. And as a member of the Charity IT Leaders group, we are deeply familiar with the challenges charities of all sizes face when it comes to their IT infrastructure. It's important to be aware that this does not just apply to the largest charities – Charity IT Leaders have recently removed their threshold for membership, enabling smaller charities to get access to IT advice they may previously have been unable to. In other words, this is the ideal time for growing charities to access the sort of IT expertise that would previously have been the sole domain of larger organisations, turning our current crisis into an opportunity to transform the way they raise funds and communicate with the public.

The potential here is huge – not just now, but well into the future. In collaboration with a number of carefully selected partners, Exponential-e offers a range of Unified Communications (UC) solutions that are ideal for the charity sector, including Contact Centre-as-a-Service. Our omni-channel solutions are ideal for call centres, consolidating and streamlining communications, whether that's through a Public or Dedicated Cloud setup, or an on-premise solution. This extends to payment processes, with a range of PCI-DSS-certified options integrated into our solutions, for secure, stress-free fundraising over multiple channels, while still ensuring all compliance requirements are met.

These solutions have been utilised across a wide range of industries for some time now, ranging from straightforward, cost-effective offerings to sophisticated bespoke ones. Furthermore, the key challenges of time and cost are answered by such solutions. An intelligently integrated solution will help maintain control of costs, both now and in the long-term, while allowing Exponential-e and our partners to manage the underlying infrastructure ensures charity workers are free to focus on their work.

The adoption of these solutions is well-proven at this point, making this the ideal time for the charity sector to embrace them. Exponential-e's teams have already helped companies around the UK deploy their own Unified Communications and secure remote working solutions, from establishing and consolidating requirements, to the fast deployment of the finished system, and any training for internal teams that is required.

As a result, the charity sector now has a great opportunity to continue scaling up its infrastructure, while remaining cost-effective and enhancing its overall efficiency – the perfect foundation for continuing to improve and help people across the UK.

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