For the sake of uplifting humanity and providing real end-to-end human experience


The rich get richer, the poor get poorer. The middle class is fading out.  The vibrant not-for-profit sector in every community is becoming very critical for many to live with dignity.

Over the years, several not-for-profit and charitable organizations sprung up in communities to meet the needs of the people. They formed structures, developed policies and processes, implemented systems and recruited staff and volunteers to deliver services. For the most part, they rely on the generosity of donors and funding assistance from governments to sustain and deliver services. Slowly but surely, many organizations were established, and silos were created.

Sadly these silos have often become an impediment for progress and advancement. Lack of communication, collaboration and coordination are contributing to the duplication of services, erosion of service levels, cost increase of service costs and reduction of overall client and donor experience.

Silos are very critical for delivering true end-to-end experience for clients. In the past, organizations eliminated the silos and formed mega structures and mega organizations. This approach has created many problems and eroded the service level and provided very poor experience to clients. In addition, this created huge bureaucracy and became a bottleneck for innovation; not to mention the increase in cost. In today’s digital world, we could innovate the silos by connecting them under a virtual framework to connect, align, standardize, integrate and optimize people, process, policies, data, tools and systems to deliver great service and true end-to-end human experience to all stakeholders. This approach will allow organizations to be nimble. This nimbleness will help them to evolve quickly as situations change.

Not-for-profit organizations are at the crossroads.  Donor fatigue, demographical change, increased level of government regulations and reporting requirements, high level expectations from clients, donors, staff and volunteers, ever increasing threats from hackers, among others, are creating huge burdens to many not-for-profits.

These recurring issues have become a significant challenge to their viability and sustainability. Many not-for-profits are forced to divert their investments away from core services to meet all these additional demands and challenges. Unless not-for-profits innovate their organizational structure, governance model, processes and systems, many will shut down in the coming years; leaving those who rely on their services in limbo.

The technical and knowledge advancements over the past 25 years such as the Internet, mobile computing, cloud services, big data, social, analytics and others provide an enormous opportunity for these not-for-profits to run, grow and transform. Lately artificial intelligence and machine learning are emerging into our lives and enabling businesses, governments and other organizations to leverage the power of technology even more than ever before.

By leveraging digital technologies, not-for-profit organizations could transform their service models and improve communication, collaboration, knowledge and resource sharing among similar organizations and/or other organizations at large. This approach does not only benefit the stakeholders, it will also improve the long-term viability of many organizations. This will become an impetus for newer and niche-service organizations to form and become part of the larger eco system as well.

What is lacking is mainly the shared vision and outcome-driven business strategy that is enabled by digital solutions.

A great example of a visionary leadership is provided by One Care Home and Community Support Services and other community support services organizations in the Huron Perth region. The experience and outcome could be used as a case study for many organizations to embark on their own transformational journey. It is a classic example of the saying, “when vision is combined with passion, anything is possible”.

So, if you ask me, it is safe to say that connecting and innovating the silos is a good start to uplift humanity and provide real end-to-end human experience.

Article by:

Joseph Edward

Founder & Chief Innovation Officer @INVORG

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