Report says half of charities do not have digital strategies

The Charity Digital Skills Report also says that nearly 60 per cent of respondents to a survey cited lack of skills as the biggest barrier to progressing with digital

Half of charities do not have digital strategies, according to a report published today.

The Charity Digital Skills Report has been written by the consultant Zoe Amar and David Evans, product manager at Skills Platform, which offers sector-specific learning and progression in the health and not-for-profit sectors. It is based on a survey completed by almost 500 charity professionals in January and February.

According to the report, 35 per cent of respondents said they were using digital but did not have a strategic approach, 12 per cent said they were thinking about developing a digital strategy and 3 per cent said they were struggling to access basic digital tools, which "indicates that 50 per cent of charities do not have a digital strategy".

It says that 57 per cent of respondents cited a lack of skills as the biggest barrier to progressing with digital, the most selected answer, with 52 per cent choosing funding.

Half of charities said they were facing other challenges that were considered to be a higher priority than digital.

The report says that, despite 75 per cent of charities saying growing their digital skills would help them increase fundraising, 61 per cent rated their digital fundraising skills as fair to low.

It says that 71 per cent of respondents rated their board’s digital skills as low or having room for improvement.

Two-thirds of respondents said they were worried that they would miss out on opportunities for digital fundraising unless their board or senior leadership teams developed their digital skills.

Evans said the report showed the sector was much further behind in digital transformation that he would have expected.

Amar said charities risked being left behind if they failed to engage with digital issues. "We would urge charities to view this report as an opportunity to really join together and champion digital transformation within their organisations," she said. "Digital has the power to make charities more sustainable, efficient and relevant, and ultimately enable them to generate more income to help even more people."

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