We help nonprofits realise the opportunities and implications of technology, so they can continue to champion and support the most vulnerable. We’ve helped hundreds of nonprofit leaders, frontline staff and trustees put digital at the heart of their service delivery, strategy and culture.
Trusts and foundations play a vital role in realising the potential of digital technology to improve lives. We work with them to build stronger tech for good programmes and support grantees with practical training in user-centred, digital service design.
Want to build #BetterDigitalServices?
These 10 design principles can help you develop more effective digital services. They've been created by and for the UK social sector, facilitated by CAST. The resource includes tips, tools, checklists and stories of leading nonprofits and grantmakers, to help social organisations 'build the right thing in the right way'.
Digital technology can help revolutionise how we address complex social challenges. But to achieve this, the social sector must respond to the changing digital context, behaviours and expectations of those it seeks to support.
We are a trusted partner and adviser to the sector. Using a blend of research, systems and design-led approaches, we help build organisations, products, and services that are responsive and resilient to ongoing social, economic and technological change.
CAST is a small core team with a big network across the UK. We draw in expertise as and when it’s needed, and work with amazing partners to achieve a greater impact.
We practise what we preach. We continually assess and refine our own approaches, sharing our learnings and also building on the work of others.
We’re a charity ourselves, and we want to empower others with the skills and confidence to lead effective change in a digital world. So we design with, not for them.
We’ve outlined six underlying conditions that can allow us to harness the transformative power of technology to drive positive social change. Six tenets for tech for good.
We work with incredible, dedicated people in other support organisations. Here are just a few. Hover over a circle and see what they have to say.
"We’re proud to have invested in CAST’s foundation. We believe that when social transformation is the driving force behind tech, it has the greatest potential to improve lives. CAST is filling a pressing sector gap around digital service development and the team’s innovative approaches are enabling charities and social enterprises to become demonstrably more responsive and resilient in an ever-demanding market."
Vicki Hearn, Director, Nominet Trust
"CAST is a key agency operating in the ‘Tech for Good’ sector and has worked with Comic Relief in supporting not-for-profit organisations that we fund, enabling them to explore how to transform their services using digital technology. The CAST team are friendly, efficient, and responsive. They bring rich experience of building the digital capacity of hundreds of social enterprises, supporting them to embed digital and user-centred design into their strategy, culture, and services."
Billy Dann, Head of Influence, Impact & Investment Directorate
In my experience, you can approach CAST with high expectations, and have them comfortably exceeded. They are a team who deliver. I like working with CAST as they combine real digital expertise with an understanding of the dynamics of the social sector. I'd recommend them for anyone who wants to put technology and users at the heart of their work, and to see results quickly"
- Kieron Boyle, Chief Executive, Guy's & St. Thomas Charity
"We worked with CAST in 2017 on a user-centred review of our digital products and services. It was a fantastic experience! Together we mapped out what we knew, and needed to know, about our users and their needs. We then conducted user interviews, analysed data, and developed, tested, iterated and re-tested prototypes. We emerged with a clear understanding of user behaviour and needs which has informed our future strategy. Along the way I felt supported, challenged and inspired. My team got to try out guerrilla testing for the first time at one of our conferences and CAST ran two user research playback sessions with me for colleagues, that were very well received. I love working with the amazing team at CAST and we already have some more projects underway, including training and support to embed user research, and a planned workshop for the entire NCVO team!"
Megan Griffith Gray, Head of Planning, Digital and Communications, NCVO
“If my organisation is going to be able to make a bigger impact at a time of fewer resources we need to look at how we do things differently. I did not know where to start. CAST has helped me to see digital technology in terms of its strategic potential to help us fulfil our organisation’s objectives, as well as to consider specific digital products.”
Derek Walker, Chief Executive, Wales Co-operative Centre
"We worked with CAST to design a tool that would give applicants a more realistic understanding of what we would – and would not fund. We were encouraged to build and test it with our users – doing this alongside applicants wasn’t always comfortable, and forced us to put ourselves in their shoes. So far we’ve cut applications by a third, meaning almost 1,000 organisations have saved time that would otherwise have been wasted."
Gina Crane, Communications and Learning Manager, Esmee Fairbairn
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