G.A.I.N. – Powered by Lowe’s
Project sponsored by Bank of America.
Coca Cola Consolidated skilled volunteers delivered a technology plan to Digi-Bridge to help prioritize valuable improvements that will enhance their ability to fulfill their mission of sparking interest and delivering opportunities for students in STEAM learning.
Digi-Bridge is a federally recognized nonprofit on a mission to spark interest and passion in science, technology, engineering, arts, and math (STEAM) learning, ensuring that students have the opportunities and skills to succeed in a rapidly changing world by fostering curiosity, creativity, exploration, persistence, and resilience.
Apparo’s G.A.I.N. (Growth, Agility and Innovation for Nonprofits) Grant Program provides nonprofit participants with the tools, training and other support they need to implement and sustain their technology and process improvements. G.A.I.N. delivers a one-year journey of technology and process improvement to a cohort of nonprofits to help them overcome their technology challenges and amplify their nonprofit impact. The G.A.I.N. program is generously sponsored by Lowe’s. This project is generously sponsored by Bank of America.
For the first phase of their G.A.I.N. journey, Digi-Bridge was matched to volunteers from Coca Cola Consolidated to assess their current use of technology and provide a plan for improvements. VBH is also being supported throughout their technology journey by volunteer mentor, Brad Richmond of Duke Energy.
After this technology plan phase was completed, we spoke with Meredith Banks (Operations Manager) and Alyssa Sharpe (CEO) to understand the significance of this work.
Before this project, they recognized areas of opportunity, they:
- Use technology heavily, but did not have technology plan in place
- Have extensive inventory that could use help to manage
- Use a manual, spreadsheet-based process for program management, that would benefit from a CRM
- Have damaged hardware that has been stockpiling, awaiting repair
- Have room for improvement in their security, like most organizations today
The 3-year technology roadmap delivered to Digi-Bridge through this project has helped them identify where to start in tackling these issues and is anticipated to generate the many benefits, including:
- Faster turnaround of damaged hardware back to students for their use – through use of 3rd party IT vendor
- Increased security through implementation of new procedures and tools
- Increased operational efficiency through the development and documentation of standardized procedures
- Enhanced reporting and program management capabilities through launch of new CRM (which may help lead to increased fundraising)
Time saved through these enhancements will allow staff more time to focus on their mission and student experience.
As the project wrapped up, participants shared words of appreciation.
Charles Rodgers (Coca-Cola) – I thought it was a really good project. Thank you so much for being a great partners through this whole thing.
Eric Lorne (Coca-Cola) – I’m hoping that the input we provided gives Digi-Bridge that opportunity for a real transformation, especially when it comes to the modern workplace and security challenges. I’m glad we had the opportunity to help.
Sanket Shah (Coca-Cola) – This is my first time working on a volunteer project like this. I never get the chance to work directly with Charles. I learned so many new things that I did not expect when I joined this project team. So please, sign me up for the next project!
Meredith Banks (Digi-Bridge) – I want to thank everyone for all the hard work and time you all put into this. It’s going to be a very helpful road map for us moving forward and figuring out what areas we need to prioritize when it comes to our technology and security.
Brad Richmond (Duke Energy) – Great job, great work. It’s been a pleasure to work with you every week. I’m really excited. I know how effective and impactful the work that Digi-Bridge is currently doing is. This plan will help boost that and help move you forward. I’m really excited to see where this takes you as an organization.