GUIDE: How To Adopt A Customer-Centric Approach In Your Pro Bono Technology Project

Download a guide to strengthen the discover and design phases of your pro bono technology project.



Technology has the power to unlock new possibilities for people and for the planet. But not everyone is benefiting equally.

Nonprofits on average spend less than 6% of their total operating budget on technology, with a mere 28% of organizations often or regularly using technology volunteers, according to an NTEN study.

Pro bono service from the corporate sector can help enable nonprofits with technology, processes and people, giving them what they need to thrive. Ultimately, pro bono partnerships in technology have the potential to bridge the growing digital divide—if approached strategically.

A new supplement to “Transforming Technology Pro Bono,” a publication from the VMware and Taproot Foundations, is designed to help. It expands on initial research, which introduced the Solution Development Framework, a phased-approach to discover, design, implement, and maintain sustainable solutions that meet nonprofit needs.

The “Transforming Technology Pro Bono Supplement—Discover and Design” focuses on how to take a customer-centric approach to the discover and design phases of any pro bono technology project. You can now get a copy sent straight to your inbox.

Key Takeaways

Studies show that investing in the discover and design phases with a customer can result in going to market 2x faster with 50% fewer bugs or defects.

“Successful technology pro bono projects require seeing the nonprofit as the customer. This means investing in discovering what the nonprofit needs and then designing a sustainable solution together that the nonprofit needs, uses and maintains,” said the supplement’s author, Ava Kuhlen.

Pro bono technology projects not only have the potential to help transform the nonprofit sector, but also provide an experiential learning opportunity for technology professionals and nonprofit staff to develop as leaders. Notably, people have an opportunity to hone the talents required for the workforce of the future by navigating volatility, uncertainty, complexity, and ambiguity.

Inside this guide, you will find:

  • A glossary of helpful terms
  • Guiding questions for the discovery assessment phase of a pro bono technology project
  • Guiding questions for the design phase of a pro bono technology project


Length: 13 pages
Level: Advanced

This supplement, its parent publication, and the Solution Development Framework can be adopted by technology professionals, nonprofit staff, corporate engagement programs, and donors to help enable nonprofits with technology to run more efficiently, ultimately better serving their respective missions. Read the supplement and parent publication before undertaking a pro bono technology project and refer to it as needed for resources and advice throughout the project.

Get a copy of the pro bono planning supplement delivered to your inbox now.

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