Many charities do not think they have the technical expertise or financial means to implement an IT strategy, according to a new report.
However the study, funded by the Barings Group, suggests even smaller organisations can make effective use of information and communication technology (ICT) through adequate training and outside help.
More than 30 organisations were interviewed for the ICT Success report, which aims to give charities a clearer idea of how to improve their IT strategy.
Co-funded by the Worshipful Company of Information Technologists, the study makes recommendations on a range of issues relating to technology in the voluntary and community sectors.
"For the individual charities it's vital that they realise that their fears about the internet and computer technology can be solved,
said Paul Ticher, an independent IT consultant and author of the report. "There are certain things that charities have to spend money on and it's important that they see that an efficient computer network is a necessary component to move their business forward."
The report also proposes a new approach in which teams of mobile workers visit charities to educate managers and provide affordable technical support.
Umbrella organisations must also play a role in persuading charities to adopt a progressive approach to information technology. The study claims that more involvement by industry bodies will encourage individual organisations to overcome any reservations about implementing new systems and techniques.
"Most charities recognise they need to get up to speed with their use of ICT, and it's important that they receive the necessary encouragement,