On a mission to maximise charities’ technology uptake

Enclude, a technology non-profit, helps charities access affordable technology to improve their capacity and effectiveness

Sylvester Murphy, chief executive, Enclude: ‘Since the early years, we have assisted over 2,500 Irish charities to improve how they do their work through the application of appropriate technology’

“Enclude is a non-profit, unusual in the sense that we are a technology non-profit,” Sylvester Murphy, the company’s chief executive, said. “When non-profits invest in technology, every penny counts and Enclude was set up in 2006 to help charities and not-for-profits access affordable technology.

“Our mission as an organisation is to work with charities across all sectors to adopt appropriate technology solutions to improve their capacity and effectiveness, so that they can better serve the needs of their service users.

“We care about the mission of the charities that we work with, and we collaborate with them to maximise the impact of their activities and the services that they deliver. We had all worked in the not-for-profit sector prior to setting up Enclude and were very committed to it. We all knew that the sector was struggling to get access to technology and wanted to assist in that area.”

Many of the big global players in IT, such as Microsoft, Google and Adobe, make millions worth of software available to Irish charities each year, but many are not taking it up, simply because they are not aware of it. This is where Enclude steps in.

“Since the early years, we have assisted over 2,500 Irish charities to improve how they do their work through the application of appropriate technology,” he said.

Enclude is the sole Irish partner in TechSoup Global – a network which makes donated software available to eligible charities across the world. Since 2006, Enclude has made over €50 million in donated technology available to Irish charities.

“In 2021 alone, we supported over 900 non-profits to avail directly of a range of donated and discounted productivity tools from technology partners such as Microsoft, Google, Adobe, Box, Bitdefender Antivirus, Zoom and others. In total, 3,500 product licences were accessed through our programme in 2021. The savings on retail pricing accruing to the sector under the programme in the period was more than €1.6 million.

“Day-to-day processes underpinning good governance, financial management, case management, HR supports and fundraising can all be supported by the technology we have available, whether that is discounted or donated.”

During Covid there was a huge momentum for Irish charities to move to cloud-based solutions. “We worked with technology partners such as Microsoft, Salesforce and AccountsIQ to provide web-based solutions for Irish Charities,” said Murphy.

“This included design and development in collaboration with the non-profits, as well as training and ongoing support. Over the years we have assisted hundreds of charities to adopt web-based CRM and AccountsIQ solutions. In 2021, we assisted 120 charities to avail of Microsoft Cloud Solutions for non-profits and provisioned over 2,700 licences.”

Murphy said: “Enclude exists purely to help the sector and to make technology available at affordable costs. We help charities to access, deploy and use the technology and beyond that we help build their capacity to better use and develop their systems”

“The tech we have available is wonderful and as staff within charities get used to it, they then have new skills that they can use in their role and can bring with them to another charity or to a new job. It will help their own professional development and mobility in the sector.”

Non-profits are welcome and encouraged to register on the programme through the company’s website, enclude.ie. Depending on their fit with a programme partner’s selection criteria, they may qualify for a range of donated and discounted offerings.