Foundation to launch free crowdsourcing platform matching charities with technology experts

The Atlassian Foundation, the charitable arm of an Australian enterprise software company, says will be up and running early next year

A new crowdsourcing platform that matches charities with technology experts who want to volunteer is being tested by the Atlassian Foundation, the charitable arm of an Australian enterprise software company., which will be fully operational in early 2014, is a free service for charities and technology experts around the world.

Once they have been vetted, charities will be able to list jobs and projects for which they need a technology-focused volunteer, such as building a website or data analysis, the foundation said.

Charities will be able to post their technology projects when the pilot ends early next year.

Technology experts such as developers, designers, business analysts and project managers will be able to use the platform to search for projects relevant to their skills and timeframes.

Atlassian, the software company behind the project, has offices in Sydney, San Francisco and Amsterdam. It has more than 600 employees, who each get five days a year of paid leave to volunteer.

Melissa Beaumont Lee, manager of the Atlassian Foundation, said the platform was like a dating website where charities could meet tech experts.

"We started hearing from non-profits that what they valued even more than donations was access to Atlassian's technology expertise," she said. "Similarly, we had lots of employees who were keen to volunteer, but didn't know how to get involved.

"Coordinating volunteers for all these amazing projects was just not scalable, so was born to benefit both non-profits and volunteers. We wanted to reduce the friction in coordinating efforts so that more time could be spent doing meaningful work." 

The foundation is funded by a 1 per cent model: 1 per cent of equity, profit, employee time and software licences from Atlassian are donated to good causes.

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