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FAQs for Volunteers

  • What are the benefits of using CITA?
    By registering with CITA you will have access to the following benefits: A pool of independent, professional IT staff who will work with you to help you harness the full potential of technology to meet your aims A help desk to support you if you have any questions or need clarification The CITA Community – a networking community across social media platforms that will help you better understand how to improve your use of information technology Occasional receptions and social gatherings to network and build relationships with other charities, volunteers, partners and CITA staff members. A range of technology services and solutions from our partners which have been validated by CITA and are provided at discounted rates.
  • Can you help me understand how I can get better technology or use my current technology better?
    CITA has an expansive bank of volunteer IT professionals with wide and varied skills and experiences. Through the registration process, CITA will carefully match your needs to the right volunteer – an appropriate independent IT professional who can help you understand how to get better technology and/or use your current technology better.
  • Can you help me with a specific project that we are having trouble with?
    Most probably – we can. CITA has worked with charities that have needed help with issues such as cloud migration, GDPR or Office 365, right through to delivering or project managing important integration projects. Areas that are common in terms of help and support include: Cloud migration CRM (including consultancy Digital policy / GDPR adherence Document / records / case management E-mail setup and management IT software or hardware selection and deployment Migration to new PCs and file sharing Office 365 deployment Web analytics / support
  • What skills can you provide?
    The skills will depend upon the need and may be specific to a defined software or technology type. Typically, the sort of skills most often required include: Consultancy Cloud strategy knowledge Coding skills Data management Data security Integration skills / migration knowledge Project management Web skills / analytics
  • What does it cost?
    CITA registration is completely free. Depending on the service required and annual income of your charity the following fees will apply: For charities with an Income under £50k Review - £75 Advisory - £100 Delivery - £125 For charities with an Income over £50k Review - £150 Advisory - £200 Delivery - £250 The above scalable fee model allows CITA to ensure that regardless of annual income or size, all charities are able to afford CITA services. CITA has access to discretionary funding and can award ‘bursaries’ to part-fund the administration fee where circumstances are appropriate. Please make sure that you mention the need for a bursary (and the rationale) when you register for a service. Of course, we welcome any additional contributions that charities are able to make, which will allow us to ensure more organisations can benefit from lower costs all round.
  • Will we have to pay?
    There is a small charge made to charities to cover CITA’s administration costs. This charge is made on a project by project basis and is the only cost. There is no charge until made until you agree to commence a project. The volunteers registered with CITA provide their services on a pro bono basis, i.e. free of charge.
  • When do we pay?
    The administration fee is invoiced when your CITA project commences.
  • Can we have a refund?
    Please contact CITA admin team to discuss however as the cost is only charged when the project commences and the fee is too cover the admin to this point it is unlikely without just cause we will be able to refund a fee .
  • If I decline the volunteer will I need to pay again?
    No. If you feel the volunteer that CITA matches you with is not appropriate to meet your needs, (which is a rare occurrence) you must inform CITA as soon as possible. We will then match you with an alternative volunteer at no extra cost.
  • How do I build a business case to show a return on investment?
    Most charities approach CITA because they do not have enough or appropriate IT skills, experience or knowledge inhouse. By engaging CITA they immediately mitigate the cost of either hiring such resource or having to buy the skills in via a consultancy contract. CITA volunteers provide their services on a pro bono basis, i.e. free of charge. Some charities will also look at the outcome of a project to support a business case – often CITA volunteers are party to buying decisions and their expertise can help to ensure that the procurement process drives a better total cost than otherwise. If the business case is challenging, remember that CITA does have access to discretionary funding and can award ‘bursaries’ to part fund the Administration Fee where circumstances are appropriate.
  • What is the process to engage a CITA volunteer?
    hen you register to apply for a CITA Service (CITA Review, CITA Advisory or CITA Delivery) you will outline your needs in detail. CITA will use this as a basis of matching you against a list of potential volunteers. Where a volunteer is available and able to support you, they will contact you for an initial call.
  • Can you guarantee you will find us a volunteer?
    CITA is confident that you will find a volunteer. We have matched CITA volunteers with over 2400 charities and only a handful of times have we been unable to match a charity’s need with the right volunteer. Whilst “IT” encompasses a wide range of technologies, services, capabilities and skills, we find that most charities have common core problems that can be resolved through the capabilities of one of almost 900 volunteers.
  • How long will it take to find us a volunteer?
    For most charities CITA can match a volunteer within a week, but for some it can take longer. It will often depend on the complexity of your project, the estimated timescales and duration of the volunteer effort, and your geographic location. We believe that providing the right volunteer is more important than rushing into an assignment – so if you have very tight, unmovable timescales, please let us know – we wouldn’t want to be part of your problem!
  • Can I meet/talk to the volunteer before I decide if I want to approve them?
    After the match has been made, as part of the assignment process, an introductory call takes place. This will usually be initiated by the volunteer.
  • What happens if the volunteer doesn’t complete the service?
    In the event that circumstances change and the volunteer is unable to complete the service, CITA will work with you to find a suitable replacement. For larger projects (often provided through CITA Advisory or Delivery Services), volunteers would normally document stage reports as part of best practice management and these interim reports will be available to any replacement. CITA trusts that the calibre of our volunteers and their professional approach would mean that an effective handover would be ensured.
  • What happens if our needs change part way through the assignment?
    This will depend on the significance of change. We recognise that project needs sometimes alter and that strong project management practices will help to anticipate and accommodate change. In our experience, most change has been accommodated by the same volunteer. If the change is such that the volunteer no longer has the capability or capacity to complete the project, however then you will need to agree with CITA whether the changes are such that it is in effect a new assignment or if it is a continuation.
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