Winrock upgrades its Email systems with BiGTech donations

posted  by Anonymous -  Wed, 18/01/2012 - 12:52  

"We were in the middle of a crisis when our Exchange server had become old and reached its maximum limit and we had to upgrade the hardware and software." 

Microsoft Exchange's major features consist of email, calendaring, contacts and tasks; that work with Microsoft Outlook on PC and Mac, wireless synchronization of email, calendar, contacts with major mobile devices and browser-based access to information; and support for data storage. 

"As an NGO, it was very expensive for us to buy licensed software and licenses at market rate. With the help of BiGTech’s software donation program support, now we have the licenses of windows software’s and the new version also."

"And with the help of New Microsoft Office 2010 we can prepare documents, spreadsheets and presentations in a better and easy way which is a very important thing for our organization. We have been able to optimize the work flow and productivity due to having the latest in technology provided to us through Bigtech." says President of Winrock International India, Dr. Kinsuk Mitra.

Both products Microsoft Exchange and Microsoft Office 2010 are available as donations for NGOs in India. Write to us on for more details. 



How the donation helped Give India

posted  by Anonymous -  Wed, 18/01/2012 - 12:36   Besides saving on the costs, the donation helped us to increase capacity and capability & helped us to save on time & to perform with speed. Small changes have helped to improve our performances & contribute to the overall productivity. We were able to increase the team strength & internally help more functioning of web. There has been a phenomenal increase in managing time, performing tasks efficiently & in maximising the performances. Quote from Umesh Nayak VP Operations

How the donation helped Sanghamithra Rural Financial Services

posted  by Anonymous -  Wed, 18/01/2012 - 12:33  

"We were incurring a lot of expenditure for purchasing software prior to 2008. Bigtech has helped us to save this money which can be used for giving assistance to the needy. Thanks to the generous donation, we could switch on to entirely computerised environment and expanded enough to handle our ever growing operational database size". Quote from CEO Mr. R. Gadiyappanavar



How the donation helped Xavier's Resource Centre for the Visually Challenged

posted  by Anonymous -  Wed, 18/01/2012 - 12:28  

Before receiving donations we had purchased software from the market with a time consuming process of procurement and spending our hard earned donations on it. 

By using latest technology we have setup automatic backups and also system images are taken which has reduced our manual back up work and given easy system restoration of PCs.  Use of Office 2010 as an office application has helped us in improving office correspondences and updation in training modules. 

It helped us as well as our members/blind students in exploring and usage of latest windows and office software.





posted  by Anonymous -  Fri, 23/12/2011 - 23:28   hkd assam

Project Management for NGOs

posted  by Anonymous -  Fri, 09/12/2011 - 14:31  

NASSCOM Foundation arranged its corporate volunteers to conduct a program management workshop for NGOs in Mumbai. The main goal of the workshop was to create a platform for NGOs to interact with the corporate world on the best practices in managing multiple projects, human resources, fund collections, overcoming sudden unforeseen changes, optimizing output, successful and effective implementation of projects. For this, MphasiS agreed to provide the venue (conference room) and also to work with Octaware and DBOI in putting together the curriculum of the workshop. 

The session started with volunteers from MphasiS giving an overview on how a program can be created - right from its conceptualizing to its planning and implementation. Jitesh Sashidaran gave a top-down view of how a program has a vision and also emphasized that the strategy should be in line with the organization culture. He was followed by Anand Nanavati who took the audience through the importance of effective leadership and communication in any program management. Very thought provoking! IMG0309A

We had also invited Mr.Sajid Hameed, Executive Vice President, Octaware to share his profound knowledge of around 18 years in the field. He explained the finer aspects of Project Management and focused on how the manager should 'identify the critical path' in any plan. He suggested tips of distinguishing a successful project from an unsuccessful one in terms of “completion On Budget – On Time”. He stressed on the need for a 'Plan before Act'. 

Sajid's ppt is attached herewith - Project Management for NGOs

Following Sajid's talk, we had an interactive session with the NGO participants. Muzna Menon and Shanti Taneja from DBOI shared their insights of program management. The discussions touched many topics and whether the donor was a partner or customer was very energetic! Ritesh Maniar from Mphasis shared his experience of 'team composition' in terms of performance and how a program manager can improve performance. By the end even the volunteers were happy to have gained an ngo's perspective on 'programs'.

ritesh (mphasis) and sajid (octaware) standing shoulder to shoulder in the PM for NGOs workshopSajid had also planned one of the sessions to be an exercise that the audience then did in groups. For a given brief, the groups were to define a Project Charter. This exercise too opened our eyes to some simple yet crucial aspects of any project. The corporate volunteers also joined the groups to handhold the ngo participants through the exercise.


All in all, 17 of us were empowered within three hours due to the combined knowledge shared by Mphasis, Octaware and DBOI. We thank them for taking time out of their busy schedules of their official roles of Vice President, Project Managers, etc.


PM4Ngos group - volunteers and participants

Volunteering for Najeeb (Octaware) did not end with the workshop. He has contributed in drafting this blog too! Thanks, Najeeb.

Popular Project Management tools: MS Project as donation


Investing in Computers? 7 Questions to Consider

posted  by Anonymous -  Fri, 09/12/2011 - 12:13  

Buying a computer is a big investment. And with so many different options available, it can be hard to figure out how to meet the technical needs of your nonprofit and still stay within your budget.

This guide will help you understand the questions to ask when shopping for a computer. It will also provide a quick reference checklist with definitions of some basic technology terms (not too many!), as well as the minimum standards we recommend for computers.

Things to Consider When Buying a Computer

1. Do You Need a New Computer?

It's possible some basic maintenance tasks or a simple hardware upgrade can boost performance and give your old computer new life.

2. How Will You Be Using the Computer?

If you do need a new computer, one of the most important things to consider is how you will actually use it.

A technology plan, technology budget, and technology strategy are all helpful tools to make sure you understand your current and future computing needs. What kind of work will your staff be doing? Basic office tasks, like creating documents and spreadsheets, checking email, and using the Internet? Or heavy-duty work with video, audio, or images? Audio-visual work tends to be resource-intensive and will require a more robust computer.

Will your staff be traveling, or only using the computer in the office?

How does the computer fit in with your existing technology?

What operating system(s) do you use? Operating systems, like Windows, use up a lot of your computer's resources. If you barely meet the minimum hardware standards for using your operating system, you may not have the computing resources to do a lot of other tasks at the same time (multitask).

What software do you use? Do you have software that only works with a certain type of computer or only runs on a particular operating system?

32-bit and 64-bit? The key thing to know is that hardware and software come in 32-bit and 64-bit versions. If your computer has a 32-bit operating system or hardware, you cannot run 64-bit software on it.

What are your future plans? Are you planning to upgrade your operating system or add a new kind of software? Are you planning to do different kinds of tasks in the next couple of years?

3. Mac or PC?

The choice between Mac and PC often comes down to personal preference. Both types of computers have their merits. Macs and PCs use the same kinds of internal processors, so they are equally powerful. The main difference between Macintoshes and other computers is the operating system they use: Macintosh computers run Mac OS X (the latest version is called Lion), and PCs run Windows (the latest version is Windows 7).

A few things to keep in mind:

Macintosh computers are usually more expensive off-the-shelf than a similar PC. However, some argue that the long-term cost for a PC is actually higher, due to additional software and maintenance costs.

There is some software that will only run on Windows. Make sure the software you depend on is compatible with your new computer's operating system.

The more similar your computers are, the easier your technology will be to manage. If you have different types of computers, running different operating systems, and different software, troubleshooting and maintenance become much more complicated. Consider whether you already have a Mac- or PC-centric office and whether or not it’s worth switching some or all computers.

4. New, Used, or Refurbished?

If you plan to use the computer for basic office tasks like word processing, email, and web browsing, you probably don't need a top-of-the-line or brand new computer. A used or refurbished computer may be just fine. Used and refurbished computers are usually much less expensive than new computers. They're also a greener option, since you're extending the life of an old computer, rather than buying a brand-new one.

A refurbished computer may be a better option than a used or donated one. Refurbished computers are older machines that have been carefully inspected and updated by professionals. If you get your refurbished computer from an authorized professional refurbisher (and you always should), you will know it is in good working condition. Refurbished computers also often have a warranty of some kind.

There are some additional things you need to think about when buying refurbished equipment:

Fail and return rates. Check the refurbisher's fail and return rates.

Warranty. You probably won't get a three-year warranty for a refurbished computer, but a three month warranty is pretty standard. This should cover any out-of-the box problems.

Peripherals, software, and documentation. Make sure you know what is included with your computer. Refurbished computers, for example, rarely come bundled with a monitor.

If you are buying a used (rather than refurbished) computer, or accepting a donated one, make sure a knowledgeable person inspects the computer thoroughly first. This will help ensure the computer is functioning properly and that it will meet your needs. Remember that as alluring as a free or very cheap computer might seem, an old one in poor condition can actually be more trouble than it is worth.

5. Laptop, Desktop, or Tablet?

When deciding whether a laptop, desktop, or tablet (hand-held) computer will best meet your needs, the key things to consider are:

Price. Laptops are usually more expensive than an equally powerful desktop computer, even if you factor in the cost of a monitor for your desktop. Parts and repairs are usually more expensive for laptops as well.

Travel. If you will only be using the computer in the office, a laptop probably isn't worth the added cost.

Upgrade, repair, and maintenance. Especially if you're planning to do this yourself, keep in mind that fixing or upgrading a laptop computer is usually much more complicated than it is for a desktop computer.

Size or "form factor." Desktop computers can be the traditional bulky tower, compact models that are smaller than a loaf of bread, or an all-in-one model (where the computer and the monitor are all one piece). Laptops come in different sizes, too: from tiny netbooks with miniature keyboards and 10 inch screens to ultra-thin or ultraportable models to giant models with 17+-inch screens that don't even need a separate monitor. A few things to consider:

If you will be traveling a lot, size and weight are important considerations for laptops.

Smaller models are often more costly than a comparably equipped standard size model.

There is often a trade-off between small size and computing power. Inexpensive netbooks, for example, may not be powerful enough to serve as your main computer.

Tablets (as handy as they can be and as popular as they are) aren't suitable for heavy use for office productivity tasks. But they're great for web surfing, checking email, and reading documents on-the-go.

6. Get to Know Your Technology

There are a few key things you should understand when you're making a decision about which computer to buy. We'll define them and provide the minimum standards you should be looking for to support performing basic office tasks.



Key Consideration

Minimum Standard

CPU (Central Processing Unit) 
Also known as:

This is your computer's brain, and its function – as you might imagine – is to process information.

Usually, a faster processor means a faster computer.

Performance, which is based mostly on:

Number of cores (single, dual, quad, and so on).

Processor speed or "clock speed," which is measured in Gigahertz (GHz).

Dual-core processor, with mid-range clock speed (2.6 GHz)

RAM (Random Access Memory) 
Also known as:

RAM is used to temporarily store information while your computer is running. More memory allows your computer to run more quickly, up to a point.*

Confusingly, memory is not the same thing as storage (see below for additional information). Storage is what allows you to keep files and software stored long-term, while memory is what your computer uses short-term to perform its basic functions.

*32-bit operating systems can't use more than 4GB of RAM, so if you have a 32-bit OS, you don't need more than 4GB of RAM.

Amount of memory, which is measured in megabytes (MB) and gigabytes (GB). There are 1024 megabytes in a gigabyte.

1 GB

Also known as:
Hard-Disk Storage

The amount of information (files, data, software, photos, video, and so on) your computer can store.

Amount of storage, usually measured in GB.

See Hard Drive, below

Hard Drive 
Also known as:
hard disk, hard disk drive (HDD), or internal drive

The hard drive is where most of the information on your computer is stored.

There are two main types of drives:

Traditional drives are a spinning disk attached to a platter. Because it has these rapidly moving parts, hard drives are susceptible to mechanical failure. For example, when your drive "crashes," it's because the spinning disk literally crashes into the platter underneath it.

Solid-state drives do not have moving parts and therefore are less likely to have mechanical problems. They are also faster and quieter than traditional drives, but they are also significantly more expensive.

Note: an external hard drive is basically the same thing as an internal drive. An external drive just has a case surrounding it and a cable to connect it to your computer.

Disk size: the amount of storage space on the disk.

160 GB storage capacity


How your computer connects to the Internet or networked devices.

An Ethernet port lets you plug your computer into a router for "wired" access.

A wireless adapter or wireless card enables your computer to connect to the Internet and other devices wirelessly.

Bluetooth is a technology that allows your computer to wirelessly connect to other devices (but it doesn’t allow your computer to connect directly to the Internet).

Wired and wireless connection capability.

Ethernet port and

A wireless card or adapter

Also known as:
Output Ports or Interface Ports

Device ports: how your computer connects to other devices, like a keyboard, mouse, printer, digital camera, or external hard drive. Different devices use different cables to connect to different kinds of ports. The most common ports and cables are:

USB (Universal Serial Bus) – the current standard is USB 2.0, which provides a faster connection than the older USB 1.1 standard.

Firewire (also known as IEEE 1394, iLink) provides an even faster connection for high-speed data transfer.

Audio and video ports: How your computer connects to speakers and external displays, like a monitor or television screen. There are different kinds of outputs, including:

VGA (analog) output is included on almost all desktops.

DVI (digital visual interface) carries only video, not audio.

HDMI (high-definition multi-media interface) carries both audio and video. Mini HDMI ports are often used on portable devices.

Like HDMI, DisplayPort and Mini DisplayPort carry both audio and video.

What devices you will connect to your computer.

Device ports: Several USB 2.0 ports

Audio and Video Ports: VGA port

Graphics Card 
Also known as:
graphics processing unit (GPU)

The graphics card or chip is what allows your computer to process and display visual information (text, images, video, and basically everything you see on your computer screen).

There are two main types of graphics processors:

Integrated or on-board graphics cards are built into your computer, and they share your computer system's main memory.

A dedicated graphics card has its own, separate memory.

Amount of system memory (RAM), and tasks you are performing:

If you have at least 2 GB of RAM, integrated graphics should be sufficient in most cases.

If you work with a lot of digital video, you will probably need more RAM and/or a dedicated graphics card.

Integrated graphics: fine for most everyday office functions.

Dedicated graphics card: only needed if you're planning to work with a lot of digital media.

Optical Drives 
Also known as:
removable media

Optical drives let you read and record (or write) to CDs, DVDs, and Blu-Rays. A "burner" or "recorder," usually labeled "RW" allows you to record or write information to discs.

Most drives are labeled with the type of discs they are compatible with, as well as whether they can record or write to a disc or only play or read it.

Devices labeled "ROM" can only play discs; they cannot write to them.

Devices labeled "RW" allow you to write information to discs.

For example, a DVD-ROM/CD-RW can play DVDs and can both play and record to CDs.

What media you are using (CD, DVD, and so on).

What devices can and need to read that data.

Functioning DVD-ROM/CD-RW device


Electronic equipment connected by cable (or wireless integration) to your computer’s CPU.

Monitor or screen.


Pointing devices (mice, trackballs, touchpads).

Printers, scanners, and other optional devices.

For monitors, the key considerations are:

Screen size.

Display Resolution is based on the number of pixels (the little dots that make up the image you see on-screen) that can be displayed; more pixels means a sharper display.

Desktop monitor: 15" monitor (measured diagonally), 1024x768 screen resolution

Laptop screen: size will depend on organizational needs; 1024x768 screen resolution

Fully functioning keyboards and pointing devices

Battery and Power Consumption

When not plugged in to an outlet, laptops use a rechargeable battery for power.

Some laptops can have an extended battery added. This makes the laptop bigger and heavier, but significantly extends battery life.

Some laptops have batteries that cannot be removed, which makes them more costly to replace when the battery wears out.

Battery life: how long the battery retains power after charging.

No specific recommendation

Size or "Form Factor"

Desktops, laptops, and tablets come in different sizes.

Some desktop terms you may hear:

Full-size: these computers are encased in a standard (sometimes bulky) "tower" case.

Compact: smaller than full-size towers (sometimes called "minitowers").

All-in-one: the computer and the monitor are all one piece.

Laptop terminology:

While we use the term "laptop" in this guide, "notebook" means the same thing.

A netbook is a very small, lightweight, (and less powerful) laptop computer.

Unless you will be traveling a lot, size is not usually a major factor when choosing a computer.

No specific recommendation

7. Do Your Research

When doing your research, keep your organization's needs, budget, and the minimum requirements in mind, and ask yourself:

Will this product meet our needs?

What do you know about the company that makes the computer? Do they have a good reputation? What about the particular computer you're looking at?

What kind of warranty do you get, and how long does it last?

How good is the company's technical support, and how long can you use it?

What other hardware comes bundled with the computer? A monitor, keyboard, mouse, cables?

What software comes with the computer?

By: Ariel Gilbert-Knight Original article taken from


11 Website Design Best Practices for Nonprofits

posted  by Anonymous -  Tue, 01/11/2011 - 09:48  


The rise of social media and mobile technology has changed the way  people process  information. The 24/7 news cycle is overwhelming to many people. Websites that are burdened with too much text or too many images without consistency in size and color scheme can immediately lead to an exit response. Whether we like it or not, information overload  is a part of our culture now, and the design and tone of your nonprofit’s website need to take this shift in communication seriously and present your website accordingly. Simplicity is the key.Your supporters also now expect a more social experiences from your website, or you may simply need to tweak your current design, but make no mistake: the general priciples and design aesthetics that ruled during the era of Web 1.0 are no longer applicable. 

Have a Simple, Visually Powerful Web 2.0 Home Page Design

The home page of today should have
large, powerful images and minimal text. Navigation should be bold, bright, and
obvious. The upper right-hand corner is the most valuable  section of your website—use it to plug your
e-newsletter and group text messaging campaigns, donate now functionality, and
social networking communities. Overall, avoid clutter. Text and multiple links
to choose from can easily overwhelm readers to the point where more than
anything they just want to leave your website.

Have a Consistent Design throughout All Secondary Navigation and Content Pages

A good Content management System (CMS) will take care of this for you.
All content pages should be the same size and should be consistent in their
layout and color scheme. Use the Arial, Times New Roman, Verdana, or Georgia
font. Text should be black, the background of content pages should be white,
and the color of the links should be coordinated with the website’s color
scheme. In general, limit the use of colors to three or four.

Format Text for Easy Reading

Write for Web 2.0! Limit
paragraphs to two to four sentences, with link breaks between paragraphs. Use  bold for headlines. Keep bullet-pointed
content short. Most important, avoid long pages that require excessive

Limit the Layout to Two columns

Web 1.0 websites tried to pack in
as much content as possible through a three- and sometimes four-column design
structure. No longer! Today, a good design structure for a website will have
two columns. One column will take up two-thirds of the page layout (or a little
more) for content stories, and the other third is for secondary navigation and
graphics for special campaigns.

Write Page Titles That Increase Your Search Engine Optimization

Every page of your website should
have a unique title. Make sure your home page has your organization’s name and
tagline. Secondary pages should have your organization’s name and a unique
title for each page. If you use your website to publish news stories or press
releases, make sure that the titles of the press releases and articles include
words and phrases that people who may be interested in your mission and
programs are likely to type into Google, Bing, or Yahoo

Subscribe to E-newsletter and Text Alert functionality

The ability to subscribe to your
nonprofit’s e-newsletter and group text messaging campaigns should be featured
prominently on every page of your website. “Subscribe” buttons should be
embedded on your home page (ideally in the upper right-hand corner), and also
on every secondary page within your website. Also, it’s important that you keep
the subscription process as simple as possible.

Include Social media Icons or Graphics

A good number of your Facebook fans,
Twitter followers, and Flickr, YouTube, and Foursquare friends will come
directly from clicks on social media icons placed on your website with “Follow
Us” pitches.

Have a Donate Now button on every page

A large, colorful “Donate Now”
button should be featured on your home page and on every secondary page
thereafter. Ideally, the button should be in close proximity to your social
media icons and “Subscribe” buttons, and should be custom-designed to match
your website’s branding. The easiest way to integrate donate now, subscribe, and
follow us pitches into all pages on your website is to include them in your top
or sidebar navigation. Make sure that your “Donate Now” button links directly
to a page that asks for contact and credit card information, not to a general
“Support Us” page. Online donors are often impulsive and don’t want to navigate
through numerous pages and fundraising requests to make a donation. Make the
process as effortless and clutter-free as possible.

Integrate Social Media into Secondary Pages

Articles and information pages
that are text-only tend to overwhelm visitors. An embedded video or slide show
can add value to your text if it is relevant and well produced. Videos and
photos help tell your organization’s story better, and often inspire donors and
supporters to give and take action in a way that text by itself simply cannot.

Use third party widgets only if they add value

The Web has become overrun with
widgets! Some are useful and well designed (such as the Facebook like box and
the Twitter profile widget), but the majority add clutter and inconsistency to
your website. Though you may be tempted to embrace widgets because of their
simplicity of use and the shiny new tool factor, choose wisely and with
caution. Too many widgets of various sizes and colors will confuse your
visitors as to what they are supposed to focus on or do and most likely will
send them the unintentional message that your website is managed by an amateur.
As a general rule of thumb, keep widgets off your home page.

Host your blog inside your website

Depending upon your budget and the CMS you use for your website, the
best way to optimize your online brand and search engine optimization(SEO) is
to host your blog inside your nonprofit’s website. The obvious benefit is that
every time you publish and then promote a blog post on a social networking site
or in your e-newsletter, the blog post drives traffic to your website. Less
obvious, but just as important, the more content you publish under your URL
(, for example), the higher your nonprofit will rank in search
engine results, since Google, Bing, and Yahoo! are increasingly giving fresh
blog content priority over static Web pages. The power of blogging for SEO
should not be underestimated.



BUSY accounting Enterprise edition added to our catalog

posted  by Anonymous -  Mon, 31/10/2011 - 17:24  

BUSY offers a range of accounting softwares to cater to the needs of different business segments. 

List of features of Enterprise edition 

To view the list of BUSY accounting products visit



Why Should Nonprofits Care About Cloud Computing?

posted  by Anonymous -  Thu, 22/09/2011 - 12:57  

Clouds are no longer just about the weather; the term has taken over the Internet, as well. The Indian cloud computing market is expected to reach $16 billion by 2020. Are you a part of this growth story? Have you used cloud computing for your work processes? There's a good chance you've already used some form of cloud computing. If you have an e-mail account with a Web-based e-mail service like Hotmail, Yahoo or Gmail, then you've had some experience with cloud computing!

What Are the Benefits of Working in the Cloud?

  • Little to no upfront costs, but watch out for recurring operating costs.
    From Wikipedia: "Cloud computing users can avoid capital expenditure (CapEx) on hardware, software, and services when they pay a provider only for what they use. Consumption is usually billed on a utility (for example, resources consumed, like electricity) or subscription (for example an annual subscription to a newspaper) basis with little or no upfront cost."
  • No IT staff required: Ok, this might be an oversimplification, but many applications available in the cloud require much less in-house IT support because the hosting provider takes care of installs, upgrades, backups and standard maintenance for you.
  • No servers need to be researched, purchased, maintained, or recycled.
  • Rapid deployment: Often, accounts can be set up in minutes. More complicated pieces of software (CRM, accounting packages, donor management software) still require more set up and probably training of your staff.
  • Convenience: Staff and volunteers can access your applications from almost any Internet connection with their login information. No more setting up VPNs or systems to allow remote access to your servers.

Green Benefits

  • Fewer servers are built and running, meaning fewer toxic materials and water need to be used, fewer toxic materials are dumped, and less energy is consumed in the running of the servers.
  • Client computers do not need to be as powerful since all the processing is performed on the hosted server(s). This means that you can keep your older computers longer and reduces demand for new computers, again saving on toxics and water.

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