Time continues to march on and suddenly we’ve sailed past our 2-year anniversary at Purity – another summer party in the park finished and another few bottles of fizz glugged to congratulate the team on a second fantastic year.
As always, it’s time to step back and look at what we’ve achieved and where we are going – are we where we want to be and what does the future look like for us now?
The basic facts and figures are: we’ve grown from 3 clients to 25 in 2 years, we’ve completed 156 campaigns and raised over £10 mill for UK charities through 56,000 pledges. Our back-office team has grown to 17 and we have 56 amazing fundraisers…and the stat I’m most proud of was that over that 2 years we ran at a level of 0.0008% complaints against calls made. We moved into lovely new, larger offices in August and therefore now have an increased capacity, although as we have said from the very start, we are still ensuring we’re not growing too quickly or too much – it is very much about quality still and not about being the biggest.
I look back at when we started: August 1st 2017: a time when most people thought I was frankly bonkers as the landscape for fundraising agencies wasn’t great, but we had the core belief that we were actually really good at this and knew that the team were the most passionate and committed team of people who could not only succeed, but help change the face of telephone fundraising in the process.
So, have we succeeded? Well our reputation for quality calls and excellence has grown and grown in a sector whose values and expectations are rightly sky high. For the first year we were knocking on charity doors and asking for a chance to prove what we could do; working hard to spread the word that we were stable; that our results were fantastic; that we had the right ethos, the right beliefs and that we were here to stay. Equally important the fact that we were also keen to be part of this sector: not just on the periphery as a supplier with a transactional profit based approach, but that our commitment to charity runs through the entire organisation and we want to be immersed in the sector, be active participants and support the sector through actions and deeds and not just through the service we provide as an agency.
2 years on and charities are knocking on our door having been recommended by others – recommended because of our great results, but also that we are great to work with and have a strategic, creative and innovative approach to campaigns. We are known for our top-notch client management, giving a service level to clients that is, I believe, sector leading in terms of the strategy, feedback and analysis we provide on an ongoing basis. We are always looking at how to improve and tweak campaigns to ensure we are consistently improving and learning. This has meant that we see results continuously improve as we work more and more closely with our charity clients and develop strong long-term strategic partnerships.
Whilst our Fundraising team has expanded we have ensured we have kept the mature professional mix of fundraisers who passionately believe in what we they are doing and who continue to have quality authentic conversations with our clients supporters – our recruitment and training process is rigorous and we still only take on 2% of people who apply – it really does take a special person to become a fundraiser at Purity!
Our senior management is active within the sector and the IOF and moving forwards we really want to develop this further. Many of our team are active outside of work in the charity sector, volunteering and being actively involved in a myriad of causes on a personal basis, and this passion for charity and helping others is evident everyday in our offices. I am a trustee of an amazing young International Development charity and was a long-term supporter raising funds for ChildLine as a Corporate and a personal supporter which means I have the invaluable experiences of seeing things as a charity, as a supporter and now from an agency point of view.
I feel that we are now, at our 2-year mark, truly established and respected within the sector as a provider of quality calls and excellence of service. Now, it’s vital that we keep moving forwards with new product offerings and more integrations with other agencies so that we can offer more and more of the whole supporter journey though ourselves and our partners. We need to keep being innovative and experimental, making sure that we don’t get complacent – this is a fast-moving sector as far as some of the innovations being made, and we want to be at the forefront of that. We need to not be afraid to try new things and work with clients and other partners to develop new ways of working and new and exciting products which will support the sector more and more moving forwards. Over the next few months I hope to be writing about some great new products that we have already started working on developing. It is an exciting time to be part of this sector and I continue to be excited and proud of what we are achieving here at Purity.
A slightly belated happy birthday and thank you goes to Team Purity – the team who make all this happen; my respect for them and their amazing commitment to both Purity and the sector is, as always, endless.
Helen Mackenzie CEO