For Swiftaid, 2019 has been a year of building a strong foundation. Refining, improving and tailoring technology to suit the diverse range of charities throughout the UK. We are excited to be heading into the new year fueled with goals and aspirations to give charities a way to claim more Gift Aid simply, so they can continue being the heroes they are, without missing out on precious funding or spending time on tedious processing.
Thank you to the 20 charities that became the early adopters of Swiftaid this year. You recognised the potential in our mission and continue to give your essential insight and feedback that helps make Swiftaid the best it can be; built for you. You are why we strive so hard and we’re excited to begin processing Gift Aid on your behalf early in the new year.
This year was full of achievements for Swiftaid; our solution became accredited by HMRC, approved by the FCA and we successfully completed the Innovate UK project in collaboration with the University of Surrey. We felt privileged to win the Paytech for Good Award at the Paytech Awards in July. We’ve built strong relationships with some wonderful charities. The Charity Finance Group featured us and published our piece for Gift Aid Awareness Day. We were asked to lead the technical for The Future of Gift Aid. UK Fundraising wrote about our launch back in February and we were mentioned in not one but two industry reports: Charity Tax Commission - Reforming Charity Taxation and Open Banking - Preparing for lift off.
2019 didn’t come without some learning. We wanted to create the best donor experience and so, successfully, integrated Open Banking into our sign up flow. We hoped that it would be widely adopted, but learnt that although it was the best way to keep costs down, it came with some downfalls. We found that Open Banking just wasn’t established enough within the industry. This meant that donors had trouble connecting certain banks or were simply uncomfortable about using a service they weren’t accustomed to. All was not lost; we listened to feedback, removed the process altogether and added a way for donors to simply link their bank cards. This new method is more costly, but a price worth paying for a better system that works better for donors. We see Open Banking as a great resource, and we have plans to use it with future projects once it has become more stable and user friendly.
2020 is all about getting this show on the road. We start the new year with a brand new website and donor experience that makes signing up to help charities even simpler than before. We will continue to work closely with charities to test and implement our system to help them capture the vital funding that’s currently slipping through their fingers via their contactless terminals. We have some really exciting partnerships that we look forward to announcing in 2020, and later in the year we will be launching a nationwide campaign, The Great Gift Aid Hunt. This campaign will be something that every charity will be able to get involved with to raise awareness and increase the amount of Gift Aid they collect each day.
Early in the new year, donors will be able to link their bank card with Swiftaid, which will enable any charity that has signed up to Swiftaid, collect Gift Aid on all of the contactless donations they make with their card. Once we have tackled contactless Gift Aid processing, we will be making it really easy for donors to add their phone number to their Swiftaid account, which will then allow charities to collect Gift Aid on their SMS donations using Text to Give. We won’t stop there, we will only continue to create more opportunities for charities to claim Gift Aid, whilst taking away all of the burden of processing it.
What a year it has been, and 2020 is only going to be bigger and better. The year that we really start making Gift Aid easier for everyone. Head over to our homepage to join the mailing list and stay updated.