“A month-end process that used to take 15 days has been reduced to three. Greentree has allowed me time to focus on such things as collections, commissions, inventory and internal controls. Our business has improved, and our debt collection days have come down significantly."Read the full story
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GAME ON win shows the UK cares
“Without Greentree GAME ON, we could never have funded such a solution. It’s absolutely brilliant.”
Britons regularly demonstrate that they are a caring nation by donating millions of pounds every year to charities.
Their generosity has enabled organisations like Concern Universal to make a difference – and for people living in poverty-stricken countries, it can mean the difference between life and death.
Now Greentree is going to make a huge difference for Concern Universal, the winner of the £150,000 fully installed business solution in our GAME ON competition.
Concern Universal’s Systems & Services Co-ordinator, Vivienne Mair couldn’t believe it when Harry Mowat, Greentree UK’s Managing Director, called her with the good news.
“I actually had to call him back to make sure it wasn’t somebody playing a joke on me!” she says. “It was a very emotional moment.”
Great track record
Harry says it was probably the most rewarding phone call he’s ever made.
“Their jubilation is an experience I’ll never forget,” he says. “The judges were absolutely won over by Concern Universal’s proven track record of efficient management and effective distribution of funds to people in need. They knew what Greentree could do for them, they clearly demonstrated the benefits it would bring, and then they rallied that vital public support. It was a fantastic effort.”
Harry says all 10 finalists truly deserved their place on the shortlist.
“The enthusiasm and creativity that they showed in order to encourage votes was exceptional – with a lot of fun thrown in too. I was proud to be working with our terrific judging panel and whilst the quality of the entries made our job quite tough, we all cherished the task of whittling the list down to the best entry.
“The number of votes that were cast was staggering, which proves that tens of thousands of companies and individuals were really excited about giving their chosen finalist a chance of winning the grand prize. Also, it’s great that it’s been won by an organisation that does so much good.”
System will go global
Concern Universal’s initiatives support millions of people in Africa, South America and Asia. They include agricultural development, healthcare & sanitation, education, disaster risk reduction, and human rights advocacy.
Concern Universal intends to make its Greentree system accessible to its staff across the globe. For its UK office, having real-time visibility of their projects worldwide will revolutionise their work.
“Having our data all in one place and being able to see it proactively won’t just benefit the UK office – it’ll benefit people at a country level too,” Vivienne enthuses. “Our field officers will have instant access to relevant information, the country directors will have visibility to help them manage the programmes, while the UK office can track live progress.”
Project managers in various countries will not only be able to manage their projects more effectively; they’ll be able to see instantly what their colleagues in other countries are doing, and gain valuable insights. Bangladesh can share its experience of disaster risk reduction, for example, and in turn may be able to draw on Malawi’s experience in water and sanitation projects.
“The benefits of this will be huge,” Vivienne says. “At present our people don’t have time to readily share information because it’s not easy to access the data, so Greentree will also be a communication tool that will enable them to contact each other quickly and see each other’s documentation.”
CARING, BUT STILL LEAN AND MEAN
Concern Universal prides itself on the fact that only 7p in every pound is spent on administration – the average for charities is around 15p. Where other charities have seen donations deplete or stagnate, Concern Universal’s annual turnover has grown from £9m in 2008 to £15m in 2012 and is expected to grow to £20m by 2019.
“We’re a lean, mean poverty-fighting machine,” Vivienne says. “Our supporters want to be sure that the money they so willingly donate is spent on helping people in need, so we owe it to them to keep our costs down. We’re ecstatic that Greentree will help us minimise costs and manage the increased data workload that will come through our expected growth.”
Greentree will also simplify the compiling of reports to donor organisations, since being able to demonstrate sound budgeting and funds delivery is essential to secure future donations.
A VOICE FOR THE VOICELESS
As Concern Universal celebrates its success, Vivienne took time to thank all its supporters for casting their votes. GAME ON quadrupled traffic on Concern Universal’s Facebook page and became the third highest channel of traffic to its website during the competition. However, Concern Universal must take credit for the way it gathered its support. Through its dedicated fundraisers who work with schools, universities and youth organisations, its local and international networks, its digital marketing partner Ve Interactive and its extensive use of social media, Concern Universal inspired thousands of people to cast votes for its bid to win the prize.
“We try to give people who live in poverty a voice,” Vivienne concludes, “and we’re just so grateful for what our supporters did on behalf of those people living in poverty who couldn’t vote for us.”
“We also want to thank Greentree and all their partners for giving us the opportunity to apply for a once-in-a-lifetime system like this,” says Concern Universal’s Executive Director, Ian Williams, “because without Greentree GAME ON there is absolutely no way we could ever look at funding such a solution. It’s absolutely brilliant.”