Wednesday, 28 September 2016

Completed #ProBonoOR project: Systemic and Strategic Mapping

SEEDS is a programme run by WDP in the London borough of Greenwich. The aim of this programme is give service users the opportunity to become self-employed through the creation of their own social enterprises and businesses. Participants complete training, business plan workshops and receive one to one support as well as access to peer support groups. Those who complete the project receive 3 months’ support with a business mentor. One winning business plan will be awarded £500 to support them in the beginning stages of their business.

When they were referred to us they required systemic mappings to facilitate the roll-out of their service nationally.

A Pro Bono O.R. volunteer used s soft systems methodology approach to address this project. Details can be see in the case study slide below.

The organisations commented: As a charity, we were incredibly grateful for the time and support that the volunteer gave to us and believe that it will have an impact on the work we do in the future.


For more information about Pro Bono O.R. please visit www.theorsociety.com/probono 

Monday, 19 September 2016

New process mapping project



Pro Bono O.R. is a scheme operated by The OR Society that places professional analysts in short term projects with third sector organisations in the UK. 

Projects require skilled professionals who work in operational research, analytics or related professions.  If you have the skills required for a project, we’d love to hear from you.
Please find details of a new project below that we are seeking a volunteer(s) for:

Stroke Association
Information about the organisation:
Charitable objectives:
(a) working for the prevention of stroke;
(b) educating the public in all matters concerning stroke;
(c) carrying out, promoting or sponsoring research into the prevention or treatment of stroke or other conditions where the effects are similar to stroke, the rehabilitation and long-term care of stroke survivors and publishing the useful results of such research; and
(d) responding to the needs caused by the effects of stroke, or other conditions where the effects are similar to stroke, by providing advice and support to those affected, their families and carers.
Main activities of the organisation: 
·        Reach out to more stroke survivors, their families, carers and the bereaved, so we can provide continuing information and support to them, aiming to build positive long term relationships.
·        Advocate and work in partnership to build research funding capacity
·        Support the maintenance and growth of long term stroke support groups.
·        Grow new services that provide therapies to aid recovery and quality of life.
·        Advocate for an increase in the UK spend on stroke research in line with comparable conditions.
·        Ensure that stroke survivors receive high quality evidence-based care through a well skilled health and social care workforce across the stroke pathway.
·        Fundraising

Project summary:
Project: Income and Donations Process Re-design Project -  Identifying opportunities for us to redesign our fundraised income and donations handling processes to improve efficiency and data quality
Time commitment: approx. 7 days
Location: Northampton. A mix of onsite and remote working.  The project could also be carried  out at their office in London.
Please read project scope  and if you feel you are able to offer your assistance please complete the application form and return to me along with your CV by midday on Monday 3rd October.

If you would like to volunteer on a project but are not able to commit to the full time requirement please let me know as it may be possible to pair you up with another analyst.  Lastly if you would like to work on a project as part of a pair or with the support of a mentor please indicate on your application and we can facilitate this. 

I look forward to hearing from you and once again thank you for your help and support.

For further information about the scheme please visit: http://www.theorsociety.com/Probono  

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Thursday, 15 September 2016

Making a real difference with #ProBonoOR


Pro Bono O.R. has now completed its 60th project. The scheme continues to benefit both the volunteers and organisations receiving support.

This is what the CEO of Hands Inc. had to say: 'Our volunteers approach was really flexible and the tools that she used to provide feedback was very insightful. The work has allowed us to step back and take a bold decision in the way forward. One that we hadn't really anticipated.
I'd like to thank the The OR Society and the work they are doing in bringing this valuable Pro Bono services to groups like ourselves. This was professional and focused support that we would have been out of our reach.'

We are delighted that the scheme is having such an impact on so many organisations and we look forward to helping many more.

To find out more about the scheme please visit www.theorsociety.com/probono

Monday, 12 September 2016

Summer adventures and a new Pro Bono O.R. project

After almost 4 weeks out of the office I am now back in full swing after what my son describes as a 'disastrous adventure' of a summer holiday! The photo above was taken on our way up to Scotland, the car was so full you can't even see the kids in the back! Some of the memorable moments include a collapsed and flooded tent on day one, gale force winds and pouring rain and by day 8 a completely destroyed tent....but also some stunning beaches, great wildlife and camp fires on the beach. It will certainly be a holiday our family will not forget in the West Highlands of Scotland.....and I'm pretty sure we'll be back!



I have a new project that we are currently looking for volunteers for.  I have provided a brief summary and then provided a link to the detailed project scope.  

Age UK (Herts)
Information about the organisation:
Charitable objectives:
To promote the wellbeing of all older people and to help make later life a fulfilling and enjoyable experience.
Main activities of the organisation: 
Active Ageing: lunch clubs, health & wellbeing centres and Healthwise sessions (500-600 people supported p.w.).
Information and Advice: telephone support (34,000 calls in 2015), community support, digital inclusion training and support to complete benefit forms & lasting power of attorney forms.
Community support: visiting scheme (350 people p.w.), telephone club (180 people p.w.) and a telephone emotional helpline for older people and carers (158 people p.c.m.) and a cleaning service (1,100 people p.w.).
Project summary:
Project: Development of corporate business plan measures and KPIs: To develop a set of measures that the Charity’s board will use to monitor progress towards our strategic objectives.
Time commitment: approx. 3 days
Location: Hertfordshire. The majority of this project can be carried out REMOTELY however, at least 1 visit to the organisation’s head office to deliver a short presentation/summary to the Trustees will be required.

Please read project scope  and if you feel you are able to offer your assistance please complete the application form and return to me along with your CV by midday on Monday 26th September.

If you would like to volunteer on a project but are not able to commit to the full time requirement please let me know as it may be possible to pair you up with another analyst.  Lastly if you would like to work on a project as part of a pair or with the support of a mentor please indicate on your application and we can facilitate this. 


For further information about the scheme please visit: http://www.theorsociety.com/Probono

Wednesday, 24 August 2016

A strategic approach to small charity business planning



This is the latest project to be completed with #ProBonoOR

Hands Inc. contacted Pro Bono O.R. at the end of 2015 requesting support. They needed a strategic approach to business planning due to a challenging financial approach, and a reduced numbers of volunteers to deliver key services.

At the start of 2016 a volunteer analyst began work with Hands Inc. and after 10 volunteer days spent working with the organisation, the project was completed last month.

The approach the volunteer took to the project can be seen in the case study below, as well as the many benefits that resulted.

The volunteer said that the whole experience had been very rewarding.

To find out more about the scheme please visit www.theorsociety.com/probono

Felicity McLeister has been managing the Pro Bono O.R. scheme for 3 years. To find out more about her and the scheme please read this interview with The Influence Expert.