Staf is proud to announce the launch of our fresh, completely redesigned website - a much-needed transformation we've been working on since last year. Redeveloping an entire website is no easy task...working out where to start wasn't easy!

The first thing we had to secure was funding. We turned to our favourite search engine and came across the Transform Foundation. A charity for charities, the Transform Foundation recognises the charity sector has struggled to keep pace with the digital improvements in the commercial sector. To this end, they developed their Website Grants Programme - which sounded like exactly what we needed.

We researched the Transform Foundation's chosen partner - Raising IT - and they seemed a great fit. This grant was the best option for Staf, and once we secured Board approval, all we had to do was apply for the grant. This was an easy process which took less than 15 minutes, and then began the nervous waiting for the outcome.

We received a response within 2 weeks. Unfortunately, our initial application was unsuccessful.

Transform worried that, as a small charity, we may not have the resources to maintain the website upon its completion. This came as a shock, but we were determined not to give up. With a healthy dose of bravery, we replied, explaining how carefully we considered our application, and how we could meet the necessary requirements.

To our delight, Transform reversed their decision - on to stage 2 we moved!

Stage 2 was more involved than the initial application process. Again, with Board approval, it involved a conference call with a consultant from Raising IT before we received a draft contract. Our technology consultant was extremely helpful, taking the time to answer all relevant questions and showing support thorughout the whole process.

Once the Board approved the contract and any decisions to be made, we moved along to stage 3 - the strategy stage, taking place in London.

We packed our bags and set off for London!

Once we arrived, we attended a one-day strategy workshop. This involved looking at the website from different perspectives and agreeing on a final structure for the new website. This was challenging, and involved a lot of discussion, but it was highly rewarding. We considered staff and members views we heard before the meeting, and we made sure everyone's concerns and questions could be answered. The workshop was a worthwhile experience - it made us envision the website in a whole new way.

Next came the most exciting part - aside from the website going live, of course - the design stage. The designer took the information we supplied and all our branding guidelines to create a bespoke, engaging website for us. The website was thoroughly tested before being handed over to us to start adding our own content. It was at this point the website truly came alive for all of us here at Staf.

Our website is now live, and we couldn't be prouder of it. This was a monumental task for Staf. From learning about project management, sourcing information, planning and communication to the simple pressure of making sure the whole site was ready, this has been a hugely challenging yet rewarding experience.

To find out more about the Transform Foundation's Website Grants Programme, or any of their other programmes, click on the link below. Alternatively, get in touch with us - we'd love to hear your thoughts on it all!


Transform Foundation: Website Grants Programme (external website)