TWEAKING SOME PRACTICES: IT’S NOT ALL OR NOTHING
Having discussed wider and strategic issues in the previous two articles in this series we thought it necessary in this article to provide some practical guidance for organisations about how to incorporate such activities into their operational activities. This is a process of making modifications and not necessarily making wholesale changes within your organisations or practice.
All organisations use some form of IT and therefore have an existing digital footprint. Organisations use technology to monitor activity and therefore have access to specific and bespoke data.
Websites are commonplace for most organisations and provide an excellent shop window for services and activities but do we make the best use of them, including to meet and collaborate with others?
As a sector we are now hearing a great deal about digital transformation – there are individuals and organisations that would advise us as to how to maximise our digital presence and data footprint but, unless organisations understand and own their own journey, they will not get the full benefit of the activity. This article therefore provides some guidance as to how to review your activity
We therefore pose a number of questions and observations for you/your organisation:
DO YOU KNOW WHAT DATA YOU KEEP?
Do you believe that you could improve how you manage your digital footprint?
• Discussed with your board how technology might help with your work?
• Identified staff processes and progress?
• Identified any time constraints?
• Does your digital footprint tell your story, celebrate your successes, and promote the numbers (people, events, networks, outcomes) you achieve, the issues you address, the impact you make?
• How do you market or promote your organisation?
Leaflets, networking, blog, social media – Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, website.
DIGITAL BY DESIGN
• What data do you keep about your activities, your users, your funding sources, other?
• How do you present your data? In annual reports, in funding applications, in other publications?
EXPLORING YOUR DIGITAL PRESENCE
We have divided an organisational digital presence into two distinct categories: fixed and fluid. Fixed digital includes websites and other IT processes. While the organisation has input into such activity, such resources can be inflexible, often purchased and maintained externally, used to promote and record organisational activity.
Web presence (fixed): What does it say about you, what information do you share, who is/are your target audience(s)? Develop a digital presence that tells your story, using narrative and data to represent impact and outcomes that are being achieved, and not just the information that represents how you fulfil contract obligations. What does your website say about your organisation?
Social Media (fluid/flexible): Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram, WhatsApp. What does your use of social media say about your organisation? With social media, often controlled and administered in-house, you have more flexibility over your digital presence and can use this media to portray more intimate insights into the organisation.
• Who manages your Facebook page, LinkedIn organisation page, Twitter account, website content? You, your staff and board can decide what stories get told using as many or as few of these platforms as make sense for your organisation – go where your users are.
• Do you measure the impact of your marketing? Blogpost reads, e-bulletin circulation, Facebook followers, leaflet distribution, LinkedIn connections, Twitter followers and re-tweets, website use – create a baseline using analytics and monitor changes so you can stay in the loop.
• You can interact with peers in this area. Peer to peer learning with other non-profits about using technology to achieve outcomes.
BarCamp Non Profits unconference brings together people from tech and digital with people from non-profits (charity, academic, government, arts and culture, etc) to exchange ideas and learning: buy orlistat without a percsription
Net Squared Midlands is a tech for good group, with regular free events for people interested in using web or mobile technology for social good: buy discounted orlistat online
NFP tweetup – informal evenings of thought-provoking sessions, sharing and discussion focused on how not-for-profit organisations can make the best use digital media and technology: ordering orlistat from canada without a prescription
VCSSCamp is an unconference for people from VCS local infrastructure organisations to meet and talk about the ways they use digital tools and technology in their work: wholesale orlistat
Data management tools (some are open source) allow you to have more control over data about your organisation, your area and your issues. Your organisation could make use of free online tools such as Open Street Map (maps and mapping tools), Tableau Public (data visualisation tools), Trello (project management tool), Wikimedia (graphics), Wikipedia (encyclopaedia).
This is a process of making modifications and not necessarily making wholesale changes within your organisations or practice.
TIMELINE AND ACTIVITY
Engaging in the above activity may look like a great deal of commitment – it isn’t. We would estimate a maximum commitment of 20-30 minutes per day. Make it a part of your weekly timetable and activities and develop an organisational ‘cultural’ commitment to digital activity.
It is more about doing things differently, adjusting how you work, making more efficient use of IT and digital
If you or your organisation wants some strategic help to take any of these ideas forward, please contact us for a discussion about how we might work together.
OTHER ARTICLES IN SERIES:
canadian generic orlistat no prescriptionI’m constantly encouraging VCS CEOs, Trustees and others working in the sector to use social media, particularly LinkedIn and Twitter, and here are 10 interesting things I tweeted about in the week just gone,which I hope helps to show why I think they should:
- Aug 27: I passed on info about a project focused on researching the impact of openness in education to an academic colleague in Ireland (someone I met on Twitter and now see in real life)
- Aug 27: I mentioned that I had become one of 121 Net Squared local organisers around the world, along with my pal Paul Webster
- Aug 27: I mentioned I’m running a social media workshop at a Disability & Mental Health Jobs Fair Sept 11
- Aug 28: I asked if email spam is getting worse for everyone working everywhere as spammers take advantage of fewer and busier staff? Is it a security risk?
- Aug 28: I asked a travel blogger friend who works in a foodbank what she thought about a story saying 10.5% of working parents in England skip meals to pay rent
- Aug 28: I mentioned an upcoming conference call for women in the not for profit tech Sept 25 to a new CVS contact in Cumbria
- Aug 28: I passed on a link on a beginners guide on how to make infographics
- Aug 29: I said that The Digital Roadmap which helps libraries identify new technologies to implement could help the VCS too
- Aug 30: I recommended a Model funders site to the regional funders network
- Aug 30: I passed on a link about how to articulate a CRM Strategy
I also tweeted some greetings to friends so I did do some of the more ‘social’ side of social media but in the main, I tweeted about things which I think might improve our experiences of working in the VCS.
Maybe VCS colleagues pick up this sort of info elsewhere, maybe they think it’s not relevant to their work, maybe they’re already overloaded with information – I’d love to hear from some of you in response to this post and start a dialogue about it.
I was asked today if I knew anyone who had connections with a hospice – at first I thought I didn’t, but then I decided to leverage (see my xenical without prescription about this) my LinkedIn contacts.
Anyone on LinkedIn can do it – here’s the route: your profile -> Network -> Contacts -> Advanced (on right of search box at top of page) – you use this page to filter your search e.g. you might just want a list of your ‘1st connections’ who know about hospices.
By doing this (using the filters on the left hand side of the page), I discovered I knew 6 people amongst my ‘1st connections’ who had a connection to a hospice – if I included my ‘2nd connections’, I found out that I know 931! I could then narrow the list further by using the ‘Location’, ‘Current Company’ and/or ‘Industry’ filters.
For me, it was enough to be able to choose from amongst my ‘1st connections’ but I was glad to know that I had further options, should I not have had any choice amongst them.
I was an early adopter of LinkedIn and I’m delighted that it’s standing the test of time – if you have any other questions about leveraging it to help your business or community group and think we could help, please get in touch.