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How to Cost and Fund ICT

How to Cost and Fund ICT


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Published by Paul Webster
Guide to Costing and Funding ICT
Guide to Costing and Funding ICT

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Published by: Paul Webster on Jul 21, 2008
Copyright:Traditional Copyright: All rights reserved


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There are many ways that ICT can improve the work we do.The key is prioritise which ICT
initiatives are most important and benefical to your organisation.This section will help you
find out what the benefits are of your ICT initiative and therefore help you create a stronger
case statement for justifying your ICT initative.

For example,for some organisations,increasing training on basic office software may be
amajor priority,while for others it may be monitoring their fund-raising activity more
systematically.VCOs frequently say that they wish they could use the ICT tools they already
have invested in better.For others,the priority is as simple as arranging for desktop and
server upgrades.

In some cases,the main concern is not about training or the hardware or software at all,but
is more strategic,focusing on activities such as developing better ways to generate powerful
content for your website and emails,or immediately engaging your members through their
mobile phones.

Keep in mind that different people – from staff or funders to trustees,partner organisations
or volunteers – may support the ICT initiative for different reasons.So even though we urge
you to focus on a few powerful benefits to justify proceeding with an ICT initiative,reserve
all the benefits you may have come up with,in case they come in handy.

For example,imagine you have a funder who is very interested in building your capacity to
improve your public awareness-raising work.You will want to be sure to include any specific
benefits related to awareness raising.Alternatively,perhaps there are staff or volunteers who
resist the idea of using a new piece of ICT.In this scenario,some very specific benefits related
to howan ICT initiativewill makepeople’swork easier maybe just the thing you need to
turn them from sceptical to supportive.

If you have a sufficiently strong rationale to pursue the initiative from the start – whether it
involves creating ICT policies,integrating multiple databases or providing staff training – it will
be more likely to succeed if you are clear what the benefits are.

Alack of rationale often leads to confusion and a lack of focus as the project is implemented.
This can also occur as a result of inadequate buy-in from staff,leadership or any others who
will need to believein the efficacy of the initiative to make it work.The good news is that it
is actuallyquite simple to avoid these pitfalls.

We are all well aware that ICT can improve efficiency,but the benefits can go far beyond this.
Your decisions about the use of ICT need to be based on the full range of benefits,as well
as costs,in order to effectively prioritise which initiative to pursue – or indeed,whether any
development is needed at all.Being more aware of the benefits will also strengthen your case
to funders which will be picked up on later on.

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