Tuesday, 11 November 2014

Pro Bono O.R.:Reaching new heights

Well what an exciting month November has turned out to be for Pro Bono O.R. I have made some great connections and the scheme has generated the most number of monthly project leads to date.  Really looking forward to seeing the impact O.R. will make to these organisations and hearing the feedback from both the organisations and volunteers.
Pro Bono O.R. is all about helping third sector organisations, whether that is by increasing efficiency, helping to reduce costs, plan strategy or demonstrate impact, there is usually a way O.R. can help.  
This month Pro Bono O.R. has also gone global with the American OR Society (INFORMS) set to launch their own Pro Bono O.R. scheme in 2015.  One of our own members of the Pro Bono O.R. steering group went over to San Francisco to present a talk about Pro Bono O.R. at the INFORMS conference.
This month we have 10 new projects leads from third sector organisations across the country.  Many of these are as a result of cross working with other schemes.  A few months ago I heard that the Government Statistical Service (GSS) had teamed up with NCVO to launch the 'Voluntary Sector Placement Scheme for Government Statisticians'.  This scheme seeks to match up voluntary sector organisations with government statisticians for short placements.  As this scheme was similar to our own I got in touch to find out more.  As a result they had several project requests that best suited Pro Bono O.R. and that they were able to pass on.
I've had some really beneficial meetings, one of which was with the Head of Charities and Social Enterprise at Baker Tilly.  We are working together to hold a breakfast event in 2015 to promote Pro Bono O.R to charity leaders.  Additionally we are planning to hold a workshop in Cambridge similar to the one we held at GMCVO which will explain what Pro Bono O.R. is and look at how it can help improve efficiency and effectiveness.
Could you organisation benefit from Pro Bono O.R. or are you an O.R. professional who would like to volunteer some time to work on Pro Bono O.R. projects?  I'd love to hear from you felicity.mcleister@theorsociety.com