Providing independent business systems advice to charities

Case Study - Charities





Case Studies



Careers Research and Advisory Centre



An educational charity deriving most of its income from corporate membership subscriptions and donations, licensing income, project sponsorship and course participant fees. The main services provided being the development and delivery of career programmes to individuals and influencing and helping organisations such as schools, colleges and universities. These programmes include the delivery of conferences, courses and seminars and the publication of material for use by students, parents and teachers. Entirely bespoke systems were being used to manage and operate the charity.



IT systems strategy and systems definition & selection. Implementation monitoring.


1 location, 35+ employees, 2m+ turnover.

Scope of requirements

Database of individuals and companies, course & conference booking, course management & development, subscription processing, accounting and office productivity.


Bespoke legacy systems - the existing bespoke applications were over 10 years old and as well as functional deficiencies, program problems were occurring on a regular basis requiring a significant amount of effort to fix.

Dissatisfaction with external support - support for the bespoke applications was provided by an external individual working as a sole trader and the charity were becoming increasingly dissatisfied with the level of service being provided.

Non-integrated systems - the bespoke operational system was not integrated with the financial systems.

Centralised database - a centralised database of individuals and companies that was common to all applications and accessible by all users and could be integrated with packaged accounting software was required.

Old hardware - the existing hardware infrastructure was old with many PC's being underpowered and unable to support the latest Microsoft office products.



The systems strategy outlined the target systems structure which was based around packaged application software to cover all applications, running on a new network. The requirements for the packaged software were documented and an invitation to tender issued to potential suppliers of appropriate solutions. After detailed demonstrations of the short-listed solutions, the preferred packaged based system was chosen. The solution, running under Windows NT, included a CRM system including course and conference booking which integrates with Sun Account and Microsoft Office. Microguide provided a watching brief over the implementation.

Contact Details:

Microguide Corporate Computer Consultants, 82 Shortlands Road, Kingston-upon-Thames, KT2 6HE

Tel: 020 8549 7152

Fax: 020 8549 8112

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