Learning and thriving together in the charity sector

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The theme of the Chartered Institute of Fundraising (CIOF) Fundraising Convention this year is ‘learning and thriving together.’ Having worked with more than 60 charities and not-for-profit organisations at Wood for Trees, one of the things that stands out for us is that the charity sector is, well, charitable. All our clients have been happy to share and collaborate with other charities – sharing what they’ve learnt, their successes and failures. So, it’s a perfect theme, there’s no gatekeeping here!  

We’re all in it together 

It’s exactly this kind of collaborative approach that led us to create InsightHub. This Power BI-driven software allows charities and not-for-profit organisations to compile, visualise and democratise industry insights to boost supporter engagement and maximise return on investment.  

The InsightHub platform contains the anonymised data of more than 9m UK based supporters, spread over various charity sectors including health, animal and emergency aid. Our users are the epitome of ‘learning and thriving together,’ because they can see the overall health of the sector – which is made up of their data – allowing them to see where they stand compared to everyone else.  

The wisdom of the crowd 

Having the ability to look at the sector as a whole isn’t just great for the nosey amongst us, but it also means: 

  • You don’t have to panic 

If your charity is seeing a decrease in cash giving, for example, you might feel the anxiety rising – what’s going wrong? Is your messaging off? Are you targeting the wrong people? InsightHub can reduce the guess work. If you can see this is an overall trend across the sector it means it’s probably not you, it’s external factors at work. 

  • You can spot opportunities 

Older people giving less? Legacy giving on the rise? Face-to-face improving? All this information allows you to see the opportunities you may not have been taking advantage of already. It also means if you want to try a new approach it’s much easier to convince others in your organisation to give it a go – that wealth of data makes it a much less risky move. 

  • You can plan more effectively 

Forecasting and budgeting become a lot easier when you can clearly see the direction of travel in your industry. Within the platform, you can see sector data from the past four years, which gives you a certain level of confidence when it comes to reducing or increasing budget in various areas.  

Learning, thriving and getting together? 

Of course, it’s not just about data. Hearing people’s perceptions and anecdotes from the charity industry is also vital – this year’s convention will provide this space to knowledge-share and be a valuable experience.  If you’re attending and you’d like to say hi, drop us a message and we can arrange a catch up over coffee.  

We’re also having a summer gathering at Market Halls Victoria on 3rd July 4-10pm. It’s roughly a 20-minute walk from the conference centre, where there’ll be drinks and food and a chance to extend these catch ups into the evening. We’ll happily talk all things charity and InsightHub – sharing our knowledge in the spirit of the event! If you’d like to join us please let us know, space is limited and it’s first come, first served.