Our society is constantly going through times of enormous economic and cultural change. But there are also charities and not-for-profit organisations working hard to improve the world that we live in and create a sound, positive, foundation for society. They inspire people to make a positive difference within their communities, are driven by their values and work towards improvement. But who are the people behind the scenes and are they equipped to ensure the continued drive towards change in the charity sector?
The charity sector in the UK comprises of 55% of degree educated employees. The Higher Education Statistics Agency has comparatively concluded that in ‘professional occupations’ there is an average of 45.4% are degree educated employees. So it is clear that within the charity sector, professionals do desire to continue learning and seek opportunities beyond a degree.
This thirst for knowledge and education is vital for the charity sector to utilize all of the skills and technology available in order for the sector to continue to thrive. From expanding our skill set to to increasing our understanding of the global challenges and changes within various communities, continued learning plays a huge role in our capacity to truly make a difference. Although having a degree or higher education qualification isn’t a necessity in all roles.
As a consequence of limited resources that charities have to invest in training programs, there is a heavy reliance to hire employees based on education and past work experience. This coincides with the increasingly high percentage of degree educated employees in the sector.
Surprisingly, 58% of the sectors employees need to sharpen their digital skills . Statistics suggest that the charity sector has a growing online presence – digital donations are very much on the rise – one quarter of charitable donations are now made online through apps or on mobile devices in the UK. There have been claims that the charity sector is notably the least digitally mature of any UK industry due to slow digital uptake and limited digital reliance. Research has shown the importance of digital competence as digitally mature charities are more than twice as likely to see an increase in funding compared to low digitally mature charities.
The digital environment for businesses is constantly changing and rapidly evolving. It is essential that charities recognise the opportunities that digital presents for them to grow as well as the necessity of digital technology to remain relevant and able to anticipate future change.
With around 23% of charities are investing in improving digital skills, there could be a limited chance to take advantage of all that digital has to offer. By considering the importance of seeking digitally skilled employees, who have had past digital experience there is an opportunity for them to reach an even wider net of people and seek the support that may allow them to have an even greater impact.
What do you think of the rise of digital in the charity sector? Share your thoughts with us in the comments section below!