National Ankylosing Spondylitis Society (NASS)

NASS is the only UK registered charity dedicated to AS. More than 200,000 people in the UK have AS. NASS are fighting to improve treatment and care to help people with AS take control of their lives. And with support, are funding research to help beat AS.

NASS provide support, advice and information to people with AS. The charity are committed to keeping people as informed as possible about AS. They believe that people who understand their AS and how it should be managed will have the best possible outcome.

In December 2016 NASS applied for a free IT Consultancy from CITA, looking for a full review of their current IT systems which they felt were not adequate to support the work of the charity. They were also looking for advice around security, a slow internet connection and ongoing IT support.

CITA volunteer, Stephen, audited the existing set up before providing a report addressing a range of concerns, including how to ensure PCI compliance, creating a back-up policy and moving part of the charities network functions to the cloud via Office 365. Stephen suggested that later Raiser’s Edge could also be migrated to Blackbaud’s Cloud version, noting that small steps are needed in a move to Cloud with email being first, then shared data, and finally Raiser’s Edge.

What difference did CITA’s support make?

Has it helped you in how you work?

“CITA’s support has made a huge difference in the way we work. It has improved our system security, which is essential for an organisation in constant communication with patients, and has greatly reduced the amount of spam emails we receive. Office365 has also made it much easier to access emails remotely and on the move.”

Have there been any cost savings?

“The improvements carried out by Stephen have saved us significant expenditure with external IT providers, who we just couldn’t afford. We also managed to purchase discounted software after Stephen introduced us to TT Exchange. This has saved vital budget to spend towards core activities such as our Helpline.”

What were you expecting from the advice session and how well did it meet your needs?

“As a small charity of seven staff, we had no dedicated IT resource within the charity. Because of this, it had been hard to keep on top of our IT needs, especially in an ever-changing digital environment. We went to CITA with the aim of establishing what we could improve, in a clear, concise and easy-to-digest manner. Stephen did exactly that! After identifying our needs, Stephen helped us carry out our improvements swiftly and in a friendly-manner. Overall, CITA exceeded our expectations!”