[This post is the 4th part of my preparatory work before applying to the Echoing Green (EG) fellowship program. You can help me earn 60.000 US dollars for the take-off of wecena by commenting this post with suggestions about how to best make my case to Echoing Green (EG).]
EG suggests I analyse and explain how our work will move from the problem to the stated goal. Here are 3 questions they ask and my attempt at answering them. Please enhance and/or challenge my answers by posting comments.
Their 1st question, about the root cause :
Does your intervention match up well with the specific problem or is it addressing some other issue ?
My answer :
We are responding to the non-profits inability to market IT pro bono services donations as a significant source of value for the IT services industry. We do this by selling French IT services firm a skills donation solution that allows them to rise their corporate social responsibility profile at no cost. This is made possible thanks to unique and under-exploited opportunities offered by the French law and thanks to an efficient online donation management tool. We compensate the non-profits lack of IT project management skills by offering them our training and consulting assistance.
Their 2nd question, about our intervention :
Is your intervention detailed enough to explain the exact way clients will benefit from your programs ?
My answer :
The wecena opportunity is advertised via a website and blog conversations. French top social innovators with strong potential IT needs are identified and contacted. Their projects are selected on the basis of their leadership capacity to manage donated skills with our assistance. A direct B2B sales effort then let’s us recruit medium-sized donor firms from the French IT services industry on their behalf : we « sell » these donors the rising importance of corporate social responsibility for their banking and industrial customers and for recruiting and retaining the best talents ; and we emphasize the fact that they can compensate 100% of the cost induced by these donations both with the fact that their « on-the-bench » consultants keep receiving their salary anyway (because of the French labor law) and with the significant tax savings offered to corporate donors by the French tax law. Non-profit recipients accept that consultants leave their project team as soon as they are assigned to a new commercial mission by their employer. This induces a high rate of project staff turnover. Combining online knowledge management tools, « open source development » and « agile development » methodologies, our training and consulting services allows the project leadership team to cope with this turnover rate. Our online donation management tool allows skills needs to be published and updated by non-profit leaders. Consultants from the donor firms volunteer for the projects that best match their motivation and experience. Our tool also automates the emission of monthly tax receipts which let donors compensate their effort with tax savings. We thus limit the administrative overhead for both the non-profit and the philanthropist.
3rd EG question :
Will your intervention logically produce the specific outcomes you desire ?
The French labor law and tax law enable sustainable and win-win relationships between innovative non-profit organizations and IT services firms. Our assistance allows non-profit teams to cope with the high rate of project consultants turnover induced by the wecena donation mechanism. As a consequence, a constant flow of skilled and motivated consultants feed the non-profit project team on their work time. As a follow-up to their individual donated intervention, a portion of them keeps on intervening as volunteers on their free time. Professional IT support communities can be built. Innovative and ambitious IT projects can be led at low cost. This allows non-profits of all fields to extend the reach of their social programs, accelerate them and produce impactful social change with modern tools.
Note : I am not sure I am satisfied by this piece of my preparatory work. I feel like this is not fluid enough and I may loose the reader by providing too much (or too blurry?) detail. I don’t know… What do you think ?