Coca-Cola Consolidated skilled volunteers provided a recommended technology plan to Safe Alliance through Apparo’s Community Impact Project program.
Safe Alliance has been helping the Greater Charlotte communities for over one hundred years. Their mission is to provide hope and healing to those impacted by domestic violence and sexual assault.
Safe Alliance expects to move their main office in 2023 to a collaborative workspace called The Umbrella Center. The space will house collaborative nonprofit and public partners located in a central location that will provide support and services to individuals experiencing domestic violence, sexual violence, child abuse, elder abuse and human trafficking. With this move, the Leadership team recognizes it would be an ideal opportunity to assess and evaluate their technology landscape and to make changes where applicable.
Safe Alliance began their journey with Apparo’s technology team utilizing the Tech Therapy program to assess their needs, evaluate various IT support options and understand the best path forward. Based on recommendations from this engagement, Safe Alliance embarked on a Community Impact Project with a team of volunteers from Coca-Cola Consolidated, who generously sponsored this project. Safe Alliance worked with this team to understand their current technology landscape and provide recommendations and a technology roadmap for their current space as well as their future office space. As a result of this project, Safe Alliance anticipates an improvement in operating efficiencies, a decrease in risk as well as a potential for increase in revenue and programming.
The move to their new space combined with the implementation of recommendations made in this plan will allow Safe Alliance staff to operate more efficiently. With this long-term plan, Safe Alliance anticipates saving around 2,000 staff hours annually. This time saved will be used for project planning, program development and advancement activities.
This will allow the organization to potentially add and expand technology based applications that would enhance client services. Safe Alliance President and CEO, Karen Parker, shared, “Utilization of a cloud-based system will allow us to maximize technology-related opportunities.” In addition, the new technology plan offers a roadmap for the implementation and customization of technology to meet organizational needs. Chief Operating Officer & General Counsel, Laura Lawrence, adds, “When we can customize and utilize technology to its fullest, our services and clients will benefit.”
In addition, centralized, user-friendly technology will allow for staff to have more time to reach out to funders and complete grant applications, potentially increasing revenue. Chief Advancement & Finance Officer, Caitlin Donley, commented, “Grant reporting is a critical element of what we do and our staff spend considerable time gathering information. Having access to data in a more streamlined, consolidated system will allow for more time to be spent on fundraising and grant writing.”
Safe Alliance also anticipates having a more proactive approach to risk. Parker shared, “Having a centralized, long-range technology plan will allow Safe Alliance to have increased awareness of current or potential risks so we can proactively address issues before they escalate.”
Parker shared her gratitude for the project, “The Coca-Cola Consolidated team provided amazing support in our technology planning. Their expertise and enthusiasm combined to create such a positive and non-intimidating experience for all of us non-techies! The resulting plan is detailed, thorough and flexible and is the perfect tool to steward us through the next stage in our nonprofit journey. We so very much appreciate the generosity and passion from each team member – many thanks to each of you on behalf of the entire Safe Alliance staff and board and the 8,000+ victims of domestic violence and sexual assault we serve every year. Coca-Cola Consolidated makes such a positive difference in the Charlotte community and we’re eternally grateful!”
The team of volunteers from Coca-Cola Consolidated included Charles Rodgers, Steve Mann, Darrell Thompson, Kathryn Buntyn, Sridhar Dasu, Chris Olzinski, Chris Chandler, Eric Lorne, Ganesh Kumar, Brian Lamoureux, Barb Bird, Jeremy Post and Rory Regan. Together with Apparo the team contributed 162 hours to the effort and delivered a project worth $31,590.
Lead volunteer, Charles Rodgers, commented about his experience on the project, “Thank you for all the knowledge and input provided by Safe Alliance, the project management skills by Allison and all the hard work and expertise provided by my teammates here at Coca-Cola Consolidated. It has been a very enjoyable project and I am glad we were able to assist Safe Alliance.”
Volunteer, Rory Regan, Director IT Infrastructure Systems and Services, added, “I was impressed with the level of professionalism and collaboration across the entire team and am honored to have been able to participate and help such a worthy cause.”