This page assumes you have already worked through two earlier pages in our series.
This page helps you pick and choose the type of support that'll work best for you.
You can follow the steps here either before or after you create a tool comparison grid.
Make use of your networks and connections. Find people who have tackled a similar project aim with new technology or software.
Be careful not to ask 'What should we use?' because their situation might not be exactly the same as yours.
Try this approach.
If you don’t know who to ask, start with your local infrastructure support organisation. They give advice on all aspects of running community groups and charities.
Our local advice and support pages for funding will help you find them. The information on the page is about what they do for funding. Skim that and head straight to the links to find organisations near you.
If you’re in Scotland you can get specialist digital advice from SCVO. Find out how Digihelp works.
Share your thinking with someone who understands the types of tools you're looking at. If no-one connected with your organisation does, then you could look outside of it.
You can get volunteer advice calls for just an hour, or longer term support as part of a programme.
We all hope for a shortcut that will just tell us what to use. These don’t really exist because everyone’s situation is different.
Even though there's no 'one true way' you can make great use of comparison guides. Use them to see how different tools or software match up to your prioritised needs.
Here are some things to remember when using this type of article.
NCVO has worked with partners to produce some tools comparison guides. Go straight to our tools comparison list.
Charity Digital helps groups and organisations get the most out of digital. They have a mixture of sponsored content and objective reviews. They will always tell you if you are reading sponsored content. Explore the Charity Digital website.
TechRadar is a respected website that compares lots of different tools for general business. Try the TechRadar reviews page.
Software brokers are agencies that sell a range of software on behalf of the companies who make them. Whether any broker can help you will depend on the type of tool you're looking at.
The choices they offer you will depend on which programmes they have licences for so you'll be limiting your choices. A good partner will look at your needs and tell you whether they have the right product or not. A partner that specialises in work with charities will be able to access discounts on your behalf.
Another option for larger projects are freelancers and agencies who specialise in supporting charities to get the best out of digital. You can pay them to help you decide which tools to compare. Look for people or agencies who do any of these.
You can find them by asking your local business groups for recommendations. Or you can try the database of digital agencies currently working with charities Dovetail.
Make sure they’ve taken the time to understand your needs. Don’t ask them just to recommend a single tool or piece of software. You need to think carefully about recommendations from agencies that only use one particular tool of the type you're looking for.
Request four things from the agency.
Last reviewed: 02 March 2021Help us improve this content
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