Half of charities lack basic digital skills, report finds

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Skills: 72% of charities said they needed to train staff

Research reveals fewer than 60% of charities have their own website and just 44% use social media

19th October 2016 by Gavin Stuart 1 Comment

Almost half of UK charities lack basic digital skills, a new report has revealed.

According to the Lloyds Bank Business Digital Index, 49% of charities said they struggled to create or manage websites, communicate effectively through social media or conduct online transactions.

Fewer than 60% of charities have their own website and just 44% make use of social media platforms, the annual survey found.

Training was also found to be lacking, with almost four in five charities saying they did not invest in digital skills. Many reported a reliance on volunteers’ existing skills rather than embedding digital know-how in the charity itself.

We need to motivate by raising awareness of the benefits of digita

Researchers also found evidence of an emerging digital gap, as charities with a strong online presence were 28% more likely to have reported an increase in funding over the past 12 months.

The number of charities accepting online donations, meanwhile, was found to have doubled since 2015.

According to the study, which also looked at the online capability of small businesses, 72% of charities said they needed to develop their digital skills.

Nick Williams, the bank’s consumer digital director, said: “It’s very encouraging that the Business Digital Index shows an even stronger link between the digital maturity and organisational success of businesses and charities. However, there are still too many without the basic digital skills which allow them to make the most of the internet.

“We need to motivate by raising awareness of the benefits of digital, including saving cost and time. Just as important is to remove the barriers and for some, concerns around online security are holding them back from adopting digital technology.

“We need to do more to reassure and support them to develop their cyber security skills.”

More than 2000 charities and small businesses were surveyed for the report, which is published annually. 

23rd October 2016 by Paul

Digital skills are a vital step for charities to fully utilize their chances of cost savings, gaining sponsorship for their cause and reaching a wider audience of service users.