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Professionals Aid Guild

Professionals Aid Guild

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Professionals Aid Guild (PAG) was founded in 1914, with the aim of helping members of various professions and their dependents, for whom such help was not otherwise available. Then, as now, there were many occupational funds offering advice and financial aid to their members. PAG differed in that it has a more “open” policy and is able to assist individuals and families from any professional background who hold a post graduate degree or equivalent qualification, rather than being restricted to a particular profession. 

The Challenge

PAG offers support to those affected by redundancy, illness, disability, family breakdown or poverty in retirement. Due to the amount of grants awarded and broad range of applicant requirements, PAG needed a grants system which had the capacity to adapt and facilitate the increasing demand for their support, as well as the capability to provide grantee outcomes reporting.“PAG had been using a CRM which had been introduced around 12 years ago in the early stages of moving everything online.” Explains Danielle Trevers, Chief Executive Officer. “It was traditionally a sales software, which we had been able to tweak, to a certain extent, for our needs, however the system was not set up to grow as our organisation did , and the system was very outdated. It reflected the type of grant giving we used to give several years ago, which was very different to the way we give grants now especially with regards to the programmes and eligibility criteria. As the system did not allow us to input all relevant data, we were not able to utilise all the features we might have with another system. We were relying on paper methods to capture the details that the CRM couldn’t, so essentially doubling the admin.”

The Solution

Investing in a new Grants system can be a extensive task. There are a number of factors that need to be considered, as the system would be used by both internal and external parties. It is important to choose a supplier who not only resonates with your immediate needs, but who will continue to support post-implementation. PAG researched different Grant Management systems and after several demos and conversations with suppliers decided to chose Gallery Partnership and their software BenefactorCloud.“As we are a small charity, cost was obviously a concern and Gallery Partnership compared favorably over others with this. Danielle explains. “Equally BenefactorCloud is specifically designed for Grants Management. There were other providers who, like Gallery are charity based but their software was more suited for fundraising rather than the management of grants. We felt BenefactorCloud was most tailored to our requirements.” “During our conversations with Gallery Partnership, we felt very reassured that we would be getting a comprehensive package which not only matched our needs but also gave us the opportunity to explore new methods of processing grants which we hadn’t initially thought of,” adds Danielle.”It was exciting to hear about how we could use the software to help accelerate our grants practice. Some of the things that we had a very manual, clunky process for, we were going to be able to streamline into a much more efficient way. Gallery Partnership stood out as suppliers who would work with us and support us on our grants journey. They were providing us a package that not only reflected our current methods of grant giving but also that the system wasn’t going to stay static and had the functionality to develop over time. It would always keep moving forward in conjunction with our organisation. During the implementation period, Gallery kept us informed with weekly meetings and it was very clear what tasks we needed to complete on our side and what tasks they needed to do,” explains Danielle. “Even after we went live, we had biweekly meetings to ensure we had the system working as we wanted it to. Gallery seemed just as invested as we were in making this happen. They were always very supportive throughout.”

Client Testimonial

“We have been analysing our statistics and we have already taken more applications to committee in 7 months than we did in the entire year last year. The system has allowed is to do this. It is much easier to submit applications so consequently, these have increased. Secondly, we have clearly been able to process them quicker as we are taking twice as much to committee than previously. I’ve been using the dashboard functionality and been able to pull relevant information to present to the board who found it interesting to see the breakdown,” adds Danielle. “We used early trends to predict what the rest of the year would look like, and this helped us compile our annual report. When we complete our annual review next year, we will be able to merge our statistics from BenefactorCloud to our testimonials which will help us present a much more comprehensive assessment of our grant awards.”

Danielle Trevers, Chief Executive