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Supporting Scotland's vibrant voluntary sector

Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations

The Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations is the membership organisation for Scotland's charities, voluntary organisations and social enterprises. Charity registered in Scotland SC003558. Registered office Mansfield Traquair Centre, 15 Mansfield Place, Edinburgh EH3 6BB.

Wave Three Findings — Spring 2022

The findings from the third wave of the Scottish Third Sector Tracker are available here.

Key findings

Scotland’s third sector organisations continued to face challenges in spring 2022, particularly in regard to staffing, volunteer recruitment and management, and finances. Spring 2022 also saw the cost of operating increase for most
organisations. For many, this impacted their ability to deliver core services and activities.

For 71% of organisations the most common challenge was issues with staff and volunteers, this includes management, recruitment and retention. It also includes staff absence and health and wellbeing.

Sixty-one (61%) percent of organisations also report financial challenges.

Almost two-thirds (64%) of organisations continued to see increased demand for their services. Seventy-eight (78%) percent of those organisations were able to meet all or most of this extra demand.

For the majority of third sector organisations, online played a large part in their day-to-day management in Spring 2022. However, more than half of organisations conducted most or all of their programmes or services in-person.

There were notable increases in the proportion of organisations reporting food insecurity (40%, up from 24%) and fuel insecurity (45%, up from 23%) in the communities they serve.

Seventeen (17%) percent of organisations had increased the number of paid staff they employed since December 2021.

Eighty-six (86%) percent of organisations reported rising costs since December 2021, with the most common rises being: material and supplies (63%); transport costs (53%); staffing costs (47%) and energy costs (45%).

Of organisations seeing rising costs of any kind, 42% felt this affected their ability to deliver their core services or activities.

Twenty-seven (27%) of organisations had made use of their financial reserves between December 2021 and April 2022.

Sixty (60%) percent of organisations held less than 6 months’ financial reserves.

You can view all of these statistics and more in the infographic summary.

The challenge of rising costs and hybrid methods of administration and delivery

This wave of the survey also included three open-ended questions asking respondents about:

. the main challenges that rising costs are presenting their organisation

. the benefits of operating using hybrid methods of administration and delivery

. the challenges of operating using hybrid methods of administration and delivery

This report presents analysis of those responses and provides insight into the medium-term challenges of rising costs and the challenges and benefits of hybrid systems.

Data tables

The weighted and raw data is available in the data tables. The data tables allow you to disaggregate the findings by organisation size (turnover); geographic location; type of organisation (e.g. Social Enterprise) and many other variables.

Last modified on 6 March 2024
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