Tech-shapes

November 24, 2015; Social Justice Solutions

“Nonprofits Need to Be Creative With Tech Purchasing,” a guest submission to the website Social Justice Solutions, tackles a perennial chestnut—how nonprofits can manage their own information technology without either tying themselves to ongoing costs and systems and vendors that may later prove difficult to change or falling hopelessly behind the times.

The article makes some good suggestions in three areas: don’t purchase the most expensive devices on the market, find tech vendors that support nonprofits, and find organizations that match nonprofits to interested donors. Here are some options that were not listed in the Social Justice Solutions story.

  • Don’t purchase the most expensive devices on the market. The smartphone business is changing before our eyes, as many vendors are promoting Wi-Fi calling. Republic Wireless, a pioneer in Wi-Fi calling, offers voice and data packages using Wi-Fi priority phones at low monthly rates. (The customer must buy a specially prepared Motorola phone from Republic.) When a customer is away from a Wi-Fi connection, Republic provides service through Sprint. Nonprofits should shop around, as Republic is not the only carrier with a Wi-Fi priority plan.
  • Find tech vendors that support nonprofits. It never hurts to ask for a nonprofit or charitable discount from any vendor you choose. Many can sell you a system at “market” but give the organization a charitable donation that offsets the total price of the system. Start paying a