Free and Low Cost Technology Event

On 29 November NICVA held an event to highlight the availability of free and low cost technology to our members.

The aim of the event was to help raise awareness of new technologies which have been available for some time, but greatly underused, and of newly released technologies now freely available to eligible non-profits.

Technology Trust highlighted the great work they have been doing for over 12 years, offering donated software and hardware to non-profits at a 92-96% saving from retail cost. Richard Cooper (Director of Programmes, Technology Trust) outlined the relatively simple sign-up process and some of the main vendors who have donated a vast array of software titles, such as Microsoft, Adobe, Symantec, CISCO and many more. Many of those attending the event were unaware of this great programme and that so much was available for so little cost.

Mike Hughes from Microsoft took us through the new Office 365 package which now has an unlimited user non-profit package that is sure to make big changes to how many organisations carry out their work.

Richard Dunlop (Sysco, a Microsoft Partner) and Jim Levi (Salesforce Foundation) took us through both Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2013, and products respectively. Both were showcasing their own brand of Customer Relationship Management service, allowing participants to get enough information to make an informed decision on their preferred path of customer databases.

We were also lucky to have input in the form of a recorded Google Hangout with Amy Sample Ward (CEO, who gave a great insight on how to go about making proper use of technology, how to approach any project and what to look out for in the future. Her ‘crystal ball’ prediction of the next big thing was the use of engagement data – everyone is beginning to look at their stats but in the future will use this information much more smartly and take action based on what it is saying.

As a result of the great interest and debate generated out of this event, we have decided to create a Digital Forum, enabling a greater input from the wider sector into issues and barriers being faced by many organisations. We have an open invitation to representatives from all areas of work within our sector to get a broad range of opinions where we can then focus our efforts and engage with the appropriate people to get support, information and advice on various technology-related topics.

For more inforation on the Digital Forum please contact Ian Kelly, [email protected]

Some videos provided by our speakers at the event:

Technology Trust - Vital Regeneration Case Study
Technology Trust - South Lakes Case Study
Technology Trust - About TT Exchange Programme

Salesforce Foundation - The Power of Us licence donation programme

Microsoft - Office 365 Case Study

NTEN - Interview with Amy Sample Ward

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