Cloud technology is now well and truly entrenched in the accounting industry. This can’t be said for the not-for-profit (NFP) sector which is still to make that commitment. Whilst there is talk – a lot of talk – making that transition is a big deal for NGOs. Using donor money or government funding, IT decisions have to be tried and tested before funds are allocated. Board members have grave responsibilities and what may at times look like procrastination may just be information gathering to ensure the right decisions are made.
Results of IT Survey by Infoxchange, Connecting Up and TechSoup are in.
Digital Technology in the NFP Sector
A recent survey has demonstrated once again that those not-for-profit organisations that plan for their technology needs have much better outcomes. Those without an IT plan are 6 times more likely to have basic IT capability according to the report. A formal plan helps to identify areas of need for investment and help the organisation prioritise implementation and resources.
Transitioning to the Cloud
There is a continuing transition to “the cloud” with around half of organisations surveyed either already using cloud services or planning to move within the next 3 years. Larger NGOs tend to be further along that path.
Security concerns and the cost of change are the biggest obstacles to moving, along with issues of integrating with existing systems. This reflects the conversations we’ve had with our customers too and we’ve attempted to address them with our online workspace options:
- Data is securely stored in Microsoft’s Australian data centres
- Simple method of transferring organisation data from local or network workspaces to online
- Around 20% of Calxa customers are now actively using an online workspace
Maximising Community Impact
With the current and anticipated changes to funding models in the NFP sector, there is an urgent need for organisations to use appropriate levels of technology to maximise their impact. This doesn’t necessarily need to involve spending huge sums of money. Donations and discounts are available from Connecting Up and TechSoup NZ on much of the hardware and software that is required – from Microsoft, MYOB, Calxa and more. In addition, organisations like Infoxchange may be able to assist with planning and implementation.
The End Result
Good systems and improved efficiency could make the difference between survival and growth.