Service Providers

Article modified: September 2017, Author:


Note: The amalgamation of some old VolResource pages has meant some services-related material appearing in other sections. Fundraising services/platforms are on the Fundraising Resources page.

Intro on selecting service providers

There are any number of special deals around for voluntary organisations – for registered charities and favoured local groups in particular. Some of these are excellent, but remember that ‘nothing comes for free’.

The service provider could be

  • just wanting some kudos that they can use to enhance their image.
  • gaining experience at your expense (or could be upfront about learning while applying other skills/experience).
  • hiding the true costs, and getting you to pay later.
  • hoping to get repeat business or a commission on future services.
  • genuinely interested and involved in the sector/your particular concern.

It is helpful to get a feel for where they are coming from, to avoid misunderstandings or unpleasantness later. And appreciate the fact that free advice based on inadequate knowledge or research could turn out very expensive!

Pro Bono Services

There are quite a few organisations, varying from informal networks to offshoots of professional bodies, which provide some way of accessing volunteers (or seconded employees) with expertise in a particular area. This can include students doing projects, which could lead to some variability in quality. Most will be listed on VolResource under the relevant subject head, but here are some others.

Maps for change “exists to inspire and empower students to create a better world through making maps and to help NGOs get the maps that they need”. (Source: Whitebarn Consulting, June 2011)

Legal – see Law Works, and others, under Legal Services.

Technology – see IT4Communities under Computer services.

There is a Pro Bono section on the Consultancy services page.

Reach is the “skilled volunteering charity”.

Misc Services



Analysis/statistical

Belake Community Interest Company Its Analysis Services team offers a variety of services including surveys & customer intelligence, statistical and mathematical modelling, data extraction, mining & analysis, geographical analysis and performance management, measurement and metric design.

Also check Pro Bono section on the Consultancy services page.

Building Works

CRASH can help if you are running a project involving single homeless people and require help with building work or professional expertise. They can provide, amongst other things, surveys, project management advice, architects, building materials and equipment. 10 Barley Mow Passage, London W4 4PH, phone 020 8742 0717, email: crash@crash.org.uk

Travel

Key Travel provides travel services for charities, academic and similar bodies. Offices in Manchester and London: 2nd Floor, Lowry House, 17 Mable Street, Manchester, M2 3AW, phone 0161 819 8900; 28-32 Britannia Street, London, WC1X 9JF, phone 020 7843 9600.

Registered charities that are 10% or more voluntarily funded can receive a 20% discount on all Virgin Trains Advance tickets bought via thetrainline.com. If income is over £500,000 in the last accounting year, a link to your Charity Commission entry will be needed as part of confirming this.

Admin outsourcing, shared services

Sector Matters, a spin-off of Northern Ireland’s umbrella body NICVA, provides a range of support – HR, Finance, Management, Research, Admin etc.

Charity Management Services based in Hampshire.

Lewis Clare Partnership provides outsourcing of grants administration, leaving grant-makers free to focus on their organisation’s core activities.

Not for Proft Business Services An outsourcing company with a charity focus which operates from Ware, Hertfordshire.

Consortium purchasing – see Suppliers page.

Also see Consultancy Services page for e.g. personnel/HR advisers.

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