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Conference calls for charities and non-profits: A vital tool

For any organisation to run smoothly and successfully, collaboration is crucial. And the key to collaboration is communication. If you’re working for a charity or non-profit, you know how important teamwork is to getting anything done, and if some people aren’t sure of what’s going on, or what’s expected of them, chaos tends to ensue. Without maintaining open and easy communication, you’re in for a stressful, frustrating and unproductive ride. But with more and more people embracing flexible and remote work, it’s not always as simple as tapping somebody on the shoulder or having an impromptu meeting. That’s why conference calls for charities are an invaluable tool which the sector should ensure is part of their day-to-day running.

Technology in the charity sector

It’s no secret that the charitable sector has been notoriously tardy in embracing digital developments. It’s also pretty widely recognised that embracing even the simplest technological offerings can be of huge benefit for non-profits and charities. Almost every aspect of charities’ work can be made easier and more efficient with a little help from technology: from cheap internal communication, to better engaging with donors, to raising awareness. There’s no doubt that organisations should embrace technology in the charity sector to truly flourish.

 

Why are conference calls for charities a good idea?

With all the different innovations and applications around, why do we recommend conference calls for charities specifically? Well, to start with, they couldn’t be easier to use, even for charities who feel they’re floundering because of a lack of digital expertise. The Lloyds Bank UK Business Digital Index found that 49% of charities are digitally immature and have “no skills whatsoever, no confidence and no awareness.” But you really don’t need any digital skills to pick up a phone and dial into a call. We’ve been doing it for well over a hundred years!

It’s not only their ease of use which makes teleconferences so useful in the charitable sector. They’re also really simple in the communication which they facilitate. In other words, it’s literally a case of being able to talk. There’s no acronyms, emojis, no need for screen-sharing or ‘Reply’ v ‘Reply All’ trauma. It’s just having a normal conversation over the phone.

That means it’s a great way to catch up on progress, or give out detailed instructions for a new project. In fact, conference calls can probably replace a lot of the meetings you might be scheduling.

 

Charities can save money by using conference calls

The potential to hold an audio meeting instead of a face-to-face one leads us to another, very important benefit of conference calling. They can save organisations a lot of money. We really mean a lot: in March 2019, WHYPAY? saved its customers a whopping £1,322,921 in call charges.

Think about all the expenses associated with holding a meeting. There’s the little niceties, like providing tea and biscuits to keep people refreshed and engaged. And sure, you can buy tea bags and digestives at a relatively low-cost each time, but these numbers build up. And then think about what even that light refreshment entails: there’s the energy you’re using to boil the kettle, clean the mugs and the plates, to clean the meeting room, to light it and power any screens you might be presenting on.

In fact, maybe you don’t have an appropriate meeting space. A lot of small organisations wouldn’t – your whole team might only be a handful of people! So then you factor in the much heftier cost of renting out an office. And then there’s getting everyone to this rented place to nibble on your biscuits and watch your PowerPoint (possibly at their peril – and yours). That can mean lengthy and exorbitantly expensive commutes on the train or by car. You might even have to shell out to put people up in a hotel for the night if you’re having back to back meetings, or starting early in the morning. Perhaps you don’t need a hotel but still have to spend *lots* of money on renting a meeting room for a day.

A simple conference call often eliminates all these expenses in one fell swoop. Plus, it makes your organisation that little bit greener, which as a philanthropically-minded group you’re doubtless concerned with – especially in the wake of the Extinction Rebellion.

 

Free conference calls for charities

If you really want to boost the money-saving benefit that teleconferencing offers, you should look for a genuinely free conferencing service. It can be a little tricky, as sometimes organisations advertise themselves as free, but participants are hit with high call charges as a result of the conference service using premium rate phone numbers.

WHYPAY? makes it really simple. We always have, and always will offer the option of completely free conference calls. You just visit the homepage, or hit the button below, and create your WHYPAY? account absolutely free of charge.

Create a FREE Teleconference

WHYPAY? will generate your very own audio meeting room, and you’ll be provided with the dial in number, the room number, and a secure PIN. Think of it as a normal meeting room. The dial-in number is like the code you need to access the building. The room number is, well, like a room number. And the secure PIN is like the unique key which you’d use to unlock your private meeting room.

Unlike most physical meeting rooms, though, this teleconferencing room is available to you 24 hours of the day and 7 days of the week. It’s absolutely free to use. You can use it as often or as infrequently as you desire. You can talk for as long as you like. And you can have up to 100 participants – far more than most meeting spaces would accommodate.

Best of all, WHYPAY? conference call rooms are free for you and for all of your invitees to access. That’s because you dial-in by calling a telephone number which starts with 03. 03 numbers are really great, because they have to be included within the caller’s bundled minutes. So if you have a phone contract with inclusive minutes, you won’t be charged a penny for the call. If you’ve run out of minutes or are on pay-as-you-go, the call is charged as a standard landline. That means it’s like calling a friend’s house, for example.

And the conference room can be accessed from all kinds of mobile phone. Or you can join the conference call from a landline, if you prefer.

 

Teleconferencing is better than a meeting

We’ve covered how audio meetings are cheaper than physical ones. They also allow for much larger numbers, as mentioned. But they have lots of other benefits which make them really useful to charities and non-profits.

For example, if you’re working with another charity on a shared project, or with a separate NGO or company, there’s a good chance they’re some distance away. You might even have remote workers that you need to keep in touch with. Conference calling lets all of this happen. You won’t be limited by geography in who you employ, or who you can liaise or collaborate with. That opens a lot of doors, granting your organisation access to new opportunities and resources!

Another wonderful by-product of teleconferencing is the ability to turn on call recording. This is a feature which WHYPAY? provides. By switching it on, you’ll be provided with a recording of the full meeting at the end of the call. This is a really useful resource. It makes taking meeting minutes so much easier, freeing up your attention (and hands) during the meeting itself. It’s also great to refer back to as you progress on a project, or to see how you tackled a problem in the past.

Plus, sometimes it’s nice to be able to work from the comfort of our sofas, without having to don a stuffy tie or uncomfortable shirt. It can even be a great excuse to take a cake tour of your town, or explore other free meeting locations you might not have encountered. Or you can use conference calling simply to be able to work from home.

 

Conference calls let charities do more good

The bottom line is that conference calling will maximise the impact of your charitable endeavours. It will save your charity money, freeing up more of the budget to spend on the things that really matter. This has already been exemplified by other organisations, from NHS conference calls saving over a million pounds to spend on people’s health, to BIBBA being able to work harder to protect the bees.

It also allows for better and more powerful collaboration, and with groups you might not otherwise be able to reach. An example of the huge, beneficient powers of conference calling was provided by the Anglican Alliance, which was able to unite with SUDRA and partners from across the communion in order to tackle famine in Sudan.

In short, if you want your work to do the most good it possibly can, you should make use of conference calls for charities. Save yourself the time and money to focus on what really matters.

Create a FREE Teleconference
Photo by Clark Tibbs on Unsplash

 

 

Gabi JamesConference calls for charities and non-profits: A vital tool
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