View all newsletters
Receive our newsletter - data, insights and analysis delivered to you
  1. Leadership
  2. Innovation
October 15, 2020

More than half of charities lack a digital strategy, skills report finds

Shortage of funding and poor digital skills among employees named as the biggest barriers to digital maturity.

By Cristina Lago

Fifty-one percent of UK charities do not have a digital strategy in place, the 2020 Charity Digital Skills Report has found.

The report, which surveyed 429 charity professionals from charities across the UK, also found 2% are struggling with the basics of digitisation and remain predominantly paper-based.

The results are a scant improvement from last year’s survey, where 52% of respondents said they did not have a digital strategy in place – whether a standalone strategy or integrated with the wider organisation.

“Like many organisations, charities’ use of digital has evolved organically and understandably some may not have the resource to invest in creating a strategic approach to digital, especially if they are smaller organisations,” said Zoe Amar, founder of Zoe Amar Digital and co-author of the report.

Among the greatest obstacles faced by charities in their digital progress, the report participants highlighted lack of funding (50%), inadequate digital skills among staff (48%), and lack of digital confidence within the organisation (47%).

Tree Hall, CEO of Charity IT Leaders, an IT network for the UK charity and not-for-profit sector, said that it’s important to set the challenges identified in the report against the tools and resources available for charities to address them.

“What is hugely encouraging and is borne out through many conversations with our members, is that most charities are committed to developing their digital engagement,” Hall told Tech Monitor.

Content from our partners
Rethinking cloud: challenging assumptions, learning lessons
DTX Manchester welcomes leading tech talent from across the region and beyond
The hidden complexities of deploying AI in your business

“Whether huge household names or small organisations with only one or two staff, the will and commitment is there, even if the capacity is more limited.”

Amar and Hall recommended the use of an increasing range of resources, many of them free, which can help cash-strapped charities to overcome digital challenges. These include platforms such as Catalyst, Charity Digital and The Charity Digital Code of Practice.

“Here at Charity IT Leaders, we facilitate our member organisations sharing knowledge and skills, and enabling them to maximise the opportunities from their digital investment,” said Hall.

The coronavirus pandemic has been a wake-up call to many organisations, including in the charity sector, who have realised that to survive in an aggressively competitive market and a recession economy, digital transformation should be high on the board agenda.

Websites in our network
Select and enter your corporate email address Tech Monitor's research, insight and analysis examines the frontiers of digital transformation to help tech leaders navigate the future. Our Changelog newsletter delivers our best work to your inbox every week.
  • CIO
  • CTO
  • CISO
  • CSO
  • CFO
  • CDO
  • CEO
  • Architect Founder
  • MD
  • Director
  • Manager
  • Other
Visit our privacy policy for more information about our services, how Progressive Media Investments may use, process and share your personal data, including information on your rights in respect of your personal data and how you can unsubscribe from future marketing communications. Our services are intended for corporate subscribers and you warrant that the email address submitted is your corporate email address.