Digital transformation in the NGO industry: Fairtrade Belgium sets the tone

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Technology can help NGOs in their mission. Every NGO’s purpose is to make people more aware of the battle they are fighting and to convince them to join them in this mission. Every ngo also has dedicated employees and volunteers on the background who work hard to make it all happen. If you work at an ngo, every eurocent and every minute counts. You’ve got to make the most out of the minimum.

Technology can save you and your organisation valuable time – and thus money. Thanks to digital transformation, anyone in this sector is able to help even more people. At the occasion of the Fairtrade Week (4 – 14 October) we want to shine our light on Fairtrade Belgium. This NGO invests in technology to enhance the productivity of the employees and efficiency of processing a label request. They developed software that makes it much more inviting to go the extra mile for a fair product without having to fill out several tons of paperwork.

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Fairer trade via technology

The times they are changing, and even in the world of ngo’s and artisan producers, technology is gaining ground. Take a look at Fairtrade Belgium, for instance. Not so long ago, they were using a very slow and complex procedure to grant manufacturers the much sought-after fairtrade label.

A “Fairtrade” label request for a product was a difficult and long process in the past.  At Fairtrade International, different countries are working with different systems to grant the Fairtrade label. It was difficult to check all criteria in an efficient way and to accept the requests. The certificate process needed to be standardized and professionalized. They called upon our expertise to replace all that with a state-of-the art online system that uses Microsoft SQL Server and Microsoft Azure as a cloud platform, for instance.

Fairtrade Belgium leads by example

Today, obtaining the Fairtrade label for your product is a much easier and quicker process. Via a website, producers can consult in a simple way if their products meet the requirements in order to obtain the precious label. This allows producers to spend more time on their products and the people that help them to create them and bring them to market. Or to focus on innovation, which even in the world of Fairtrade producers is a necessity to stay ahead of the competition.

Hopefully, this move forward by Fairtrade Belgium may serve as an example for many small producers out there to take a look at the technology that they are using. Switching to modern, efficient systems doesn’t have to be expensive as long as you set your goals, determine how much you can save on the long term and communicate transparently with your IT partner.

If technology can help large corporations to grow and prosper, why shouldn’t NGOs take advantage of it? If you come to think of it, isn’t that what Fairtrade is all about?

For more information about the new digital system for Fairtrade, don’t hesitate to read our Fairtrade reference page.

 

*Image source: fairtradebelgium.be

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