We’ve known for a long time that social investment can seem both complex and inaccessible to the very organisations it’s seeking to serve.

That’s why I’m delighted to announce the relaunch of Good Finance - a website to help charities and social enterprises navigate the world of social investment.

Built for the sector, by the sector, it follows an extensive period of research and co-design over the course of last year. Charities and social enterprises up and down the UK told us what they wanted from a digital product, helped us design it and then we built it. It’s come a long way from the humble beginnings of an initial concept and Beta website.

So what does the new website do?

First and foremost, it looks to address three of the most commonly identified barriers that organisations face when navigating social investment:

  1. Knowledge

Organisations need to improve their knowledge and understanding of social investment. This includes what it is, what it can be used for and the journey and process that’s required.

Good Finance has structured the content in a logical flow, explaining financial jargon throughout. It also provides a growing list of examples of organisations who have taken it on via our case studies.

  1. Informed decision-making

Users want to make informed decisions based on their needs and situation, not on embedded attitudes.

We’ve developed a new profiler tool to help users consider whether it’s right for them, which provides suggestions on areas to develop and recommends types of investment to explore.

  1. Connection

This is a face to face world and organisations need to be connected to the right investors to talk to based on shared values.

The website now contains the first ever directory of investors and advisers. Charities and social enterprises can identify the most appropriate contacts, based on their financial needs, to continue their journey outside of the website.

Where next?

It’s our hope that with these tools, users will not only become better educated about social investment, they will also feel empowered to make informed decisions that are right for their organisations. Because that is what ultimately matters. Not whether we’re increasing “deal-flow”, but whether we’re succeeding in improving understanding of what it is, who it’s for, what it can do and where you can get it.

Of course, this launch is just the start of a new phase in this project. Events, more case studies and further user testing are all still to come.  

Last but not least, we will continue to be collaborative in everything we do, working together with our partners to ensure Good Finance is kept relevant and useful to those who helped design it – the charities and social enterprises.

By Kieran Whiteside, Project Manager, Good Finance