NI charities suffering digital drought

  • A new Ulster Bank report has highlighted a strong need for digital transformation in Northern Ireland's charities. 
    We often think of Northern Ireland's tech sector as a mixture of innovative startups and large companies engaged in a virtual war for qualified graduates, but third sector organisations such as charities have just as many of the same needs. We heard recently how small charity Hope House benefitted greatly from a new website and online donation platform, and their case is more common than you might think.
    The latest Ulster Bank and CO3 3rd Sector Index report surveyed the CEOs of many third sector organisations in Northern Ireland to gather data on the sentiment within them. Around 94% of respondents said that their organisation had serious barriers preventing it from fully accessing technology, with common barriers being financial and skill based in nature.
    While 40% of companies surveyed said that they expect digital technologies to play a big part in the company's plans over the next 5 years, only 28% agreed that technology had significantly changed their business over the last 5 years. This represents a significant shift in attitudes of third sector companies toward modern technology, with most organisations now recognising the importance of investment in digital transformation.
    Ulster Bank points to further examples such as charity Angel Eyes NI, which recently invested in virtual reality training tools that parents and carers can use to simulate visual impairment and get practical experience of their child's disability.

    Source: Written based on press release

    About the author

    Brendan is a Sync NI writer with a special interest in the gaming sector, programming, emerging technology, and physics. To connect with Brendan, feel free to send him an email or follow him on Twitter.

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