Tech to The Rescue — on a mission to deliver social impact
Software companies and IT providers offer many vital services in an increasingly digital world. While some specialize in a given niche, such as data management or interactive design, others include teams which offer end-to-end digital solutions across a range of different industries. But what if all these collective skills were put to use to deliver social good? What if NGOs could tap into the expertise and deliver their work more efficiently and effectively? Enter Tech to the Rescue, of which 10Clouds is one of the Founding Partners.
What is Tech to The Rescue?
Tech To The Rescue is a voluntary movement of tech companies to help social impact organizations around the world implement digital solutions to scale up their influence. Established in 2020 by the coalition of a few CEE tech companies, the program enables NGOs to receive support from them in areas such as building scalable systems, implementing ecommerce solutions, improving their data storage and management, and much more.
The idea is that an NGO with a given digital challenge is matched with an IT company which is able to support them in solving this challenge. So far, TTTR managed to bring over 250 Tech companies together to implement technology solutions for good. Both non-profit foundations and tech companies can register through the website and find the project that matches both sides' expectations.
The initiative is led by Jacek Siadkowski and Daniel Di Giusto, the co-founders who decided to quit their businesses to lead the movement. They are supported by the Advisory Board constituted from the Founding Members representative and the market experts.
Why 10Clouds joined the movement as a Founding Partner
10Clouds joined Tech to the Rescue largely due to our founders’ belief that IT companies, which are now often in a privileged position, should technologically support non-governmental organizations, for the greater good of society. Thanks to Tech to the Rescue, our teams have met people who, like us, are on a mission to change the world through new technologies. We have skilled developers, designers, machine learning engineers and project managers, tested models of operation and goals consistent with our strategy. We can see that our work with TTTR brings real results.
An interview with Marta Klepka, Head of Growth at 10Clouds
We spoke to Marta Klepka, 10Clouds’ Head of Growth to find out more about what being part of Tech To The Rescue involves, and what the organization’s plans are for the future of this movement:
What does Tech To The Rescue mean to you and how did you get engaged in the movement?
When I joined 10Clouds I knew that the company was offering me the possibility to develop both as a professional and as a person, for example by supporting our CSR work and contributing to #techforgood initiatives. I was really pleased to be involved, because this aligns with my values and 10Clouds’ desire to be a socially responsible organization — you can’t just do business; being an active community member and running projects with social impact is equally important.
Becoming a 10Clouder I knew the company was already a Founding Partner of Tech To The Rescue, but I wasn’t sure what exactly this meant. It all changed when I met the TTTR team and the first NGO that we supported — Altruisto.
I soon realized how valuable TTTR’s work was, both in terms of the people who directly benefited from the project and the employees at 10Clouds, who were proud to be part of such initiatives. This is why I’m determined that the scheme gets much more attention.
Our CEO, Maciej Cielecki, has included me in the talks on the future of our cooperation with Tech To The Rescue, so here I am.
Why are you proud to be part of the movement?
Participation in pro-social projects is something that should become completely natural for the IT industry – both for owners, management and employees. This is, in my opinion, the strength of Tech To The Rescue. It is difficult to approach one of its projects without enthusiasm (laughs).
Frankly, it’s something that it’s difficult not to be proud of, particularly if you look at the results TTTR achieved in its very brief 18 months on the market. With limited resources, the organization brought together companies and NGOs through 50 projects, 90% of which were successfully implemented, with the NGOs receiving much-needed IT support from entrepreneurs who wanted to help pro bono.
Sounds impressive! Could you tell us a bit about Altruisto and the recent product that 10Clouds’ worked on with the team as one of TTTR matchmaking projects?
Of course. Altruisto is a plugin, which gets activated whenever a user shops at one of the many partner websites. A percentage of the purchase cost is automatically donated to charity. Altruisto raises funds for initiatives primarily related to animal suffering, COVID-19 and extreme poverty. It is a simple yet super effective model to get fundings for NGOs embedded in our daily life and consumer habits.
The team was satisfied with its mission and vision, but was concerned about the relatively low take-up rates of both its website plug-in and mobile app. It was apparent that the existing homepage wasn’t performing to its full potential when it came to both driving traffic and converting users into donors. Altruisto turned to 10Clouds for support in turning this around.
We went back to the discovery phase to explore new solutions and we ended up creating a new landing page. I was very pleased to find out that this boosted the conversion rate by 22% compared to the previous website! You can read more about this cooperation in our case study section.
Why do you think ‘Tech for good’ is so important for the future of the IT industry and our society?
TTTR has started as a grassroot initiative, but quickly rose to become a project with huge international potential. At present, it’s a matchmaking organization for non-profits and tech companies as well as the platform for tech leaders that want to lead social change. But it has ambitious future plans. It’s now on a mission to become a global leader in the social innovation space by establishing pro-bono projects for non-profits as a standard practice in the digital service industry.
Many IT companies are in a highly privileged market position, and unlike other sectors, gained even more traction and greater revenue in the post-Covid era. They should feel that it's their duty to give something back to society.
Do you work for one of these companies? Do you have developers or designers with some time to spare? Invest it in pro-bono projects and don't let it be just a few consultancy hours - make it a project with tangible results. A lot of seemingly small-scale involvement could go a long way.
This is how the Tech To The Rescue partners delivered digital products (such as that completed by 10Clouds for Altruisto) for over 50 NGOs, each addressing real problems with huge potential to make the lives of millions of people better.
On the other hand, it can’t go unnoticed that our employees approach socially engaged projects with passion and a strong willingness to take part. It gives them a sense of fulfillment and a motivation for further work.
In such competitive industries like IT it is hard to recruit experts, as the market leaders each offer a pretty similar package: a wide variety of perks and benefits, flexible working hours, a remote-first culture, good salaries. Our company culture is what differentiates us most from the rest of the market. Since day one at 10Clouds I knew that when I have a hard time at work or in my personal life, I can count on the support from my colleagues. Humanism is one of our main values, and it is expressed also by being engaged in Diversity and Inclusion or Corporate Responsibility initiatives, such as TTTR.
Increasingly IT and other market specialists make their employment dependent on the possibility of acting in such projects. And this trend is here to stay. It’s something that companies should realize now, or they will run the risk of losing talent due to a lack of social impact and engagement. As a sociologist, I find this to be a fascinating, positive social change.
A future filled with possibilities for NGOs
The future for the Tech To The Rescue movement is bright. In 2022, it wants to combine and initiate 240 projects. To achieve this, the organization registered itself as a foundation and secured a seed funding round of €700k until December 2022. This is all to secure the next 3 years of operation, expanding worldwide and seeking world-class experts to join the Foundation Council to help advance the TTTR.
What does it mean for 10Clouds projects with TTTR? “We seek NGO Partners that operate in the field of neurodiversity, which is an area of special interest for us, as well as not-for-profits in the finance sector, as our company strategically is focusing on FinTech, DeFi and banking,” - concludes Marta.
To date, the Tech To The Rescue community includes more than 250 IT companies and more than 300 nonprofits, operating in more than 40 countries worldwide, which signed up to use the Foundation to scale up their potential influence. In early December’ 21, Forbes awarded the TTTR a Responsible Leadership prize. It was also crowned startup of the week, while Jacek Siadkowski and Daniel Di Gusto were featured on the 30 under 30 list.
Pondering on that Marta notes, "Only a year and a half ago, we didn’t even dream that Tech to the Rescue would be noticed and appreciated by the business environment so quickly. The fact that it has, allows us to find new partners more effectively across the IT industry (not just in traditional software houses such as 10Clouds, which are the basis of this movement.) Our goal now is to expand the community of companies that change the reality for hundreds of foundations for which technological development means the possibility of faster scaling and increased impact for the communities that they serve.” We invite you to become a part of this change!