Charity digital code of practice launches in November
New code aims to answer calls among charities for more help to manage risk, persuade leaders of the importance of digital and to improve staff skills.
The first digital code of practice for charities is to launch next month to help the sector improve their tech skills and increase digital take up.
The Charity Digital Code of Practice is funded by Lloyds Banking Group and Co-op Foundation and is managed by a sector wide group led by independent digital expert Zoe Amar.
The code will be voluntary and free to access and has been developed following a consultation involving a survey of 171 charity representatives.
This survey revealed that 60% want to increase digital skills in their charity, and 49% are already embracing digital but want to take this area of the organisation to another level.
Managing risk is a key area charities are looking for support in, cited by 36% of respondents.
Meanwhile, more than a quarter (26%) want their boards to get behind digital and 16% want more support from their leadership team to improve their charity’s digital capabilities.
Lack of investment is a barrier, with 39% saying they need more funding to progress with improving digital.
Separate versions for small and large charities
The code will launch on November 15 and will feature versions for small and large charities. It will set out principles for good practice and has the backing of the government, as part of its Civil Society Strategy.
Among those to respond to the survey was Lara Burns, Chief Digital and Technology Officer at Age UK.
“As a sector, there is much more we can do to fully embrace the opportunities that digital technology offers and the Charity Digital Code of Practice will provide a welcome structure for this,” she said.
“It will give a helpful direction for leadership and governance, and a potential framework for collaborating across the sector and sharing learnings, whilst the resources will provide practical help for delivering programmes.
Also responding was Clive Gardiner, the NSPCC’s Head of Digital. He said: “The Charity Digital Code of Practice will be a hugely helpful, timely and topical resource, offering a robust, constructive framework of issues, tips and checklists that organisations of all sizes can reflect upon and consider.
“Having been involved since its inception and through iterations and piloting, it’s wonderful to see it come to fruition with such flourish.
“It will support and complement perfectly the suite of digital strategy initiatives I’m leading at NSPCC this year to ensure that our digital transformation accelerates to match the pace of change in the external world.”
The code’s management group is also urging charities to discuss the code via social media, using #CharityDigitalCode.