Today, we live in the future. We’re using technology that was the stuff of dreams and science fiction in the not-so-distant past.
Think of the Babel fish in The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy; Google Translate and Skype can now translate audio in real time. Think of replicators from Star Trek; 3D printers have printed everything from pizza to human organs. Think of Back to the Future II; not only do we have self-lacing trainers, we even have functioning hoverboards!
That is, of course, all well and good, but how does it affect charities’ abilities to achieve their missions?
The fact that we are living in the future means you can work more effectively than you may think is possible. Unfortunately, hoverboards probably won’t have a massive impact on how well you help your cause. The fact that we are now living in the future does, however, mean that you can work more effectively than you may well think is possible. And really, that should always be your aim, whether you’re trying to change the world or just help your local community. Doing so lets you squeeze more good out of any funds you raise and get more done with your precious time.
How exactly? I’m afraid that depends on your cause. But to help, here are a few starting points.
Utilize the cloud. Cloud computing has changed everything. It has made it possible to lease software, removing upfront costs and making it easier to change away if you need to. In further good news, tech companies have reacted to the fact that people and companies want to switch more often by making it much easier to do so (ie you shouldn’t need advanced technical knowledge to install anything anymore).
That all means that even tiny organizations can make use of world-class software. We use Office 365 (which offers non-profit pricing) for Microsoft Excel work, emails and more.
We access files from different locations using a cloud collaboration service. We make cheap calls through Skype for Business. We even manage expenses and organize work in the cloud.
Do your research. Thanks to the fact that we now live in the future, if you have a pain point in your day-to-day work, the chances are, something exists to remedy it.
The Internet is full of advice and guidance articles, tech comparison sites and personal product reviews. So if you have a problem that slows you down every day, Google it. A couple of hours’ research might just save you a lot of time and money in the long run, which means you can spend more of both on helping your cause.
Use the Internet well. Being active online doesn’t cost a lot of money, but might just help you reach new donors or help more people.
That said, if you set up a website and social media pages and then ignore them, realistically they won’t do much good.
Don’t set up a social media account for the sake of it; think about your audience and only go where they are.
This article excerpt, by Matt Moorut, originally appeared here: http://bit.ly/1O80uLR