Okta for Good Lunch + Conversation with Global Humanitarian NGOs
Erin Baudo Felter: Thank you so much for joining us for lunch and a little conversation. I'm Erin Baudo Felter, executive director of Okta for Good. And I'm really excited to continue the conversation that we started this morning on the keynote stage. As you may have noticed, we're really elevating the stories of our non-profit customers this year at Oktane. We’re doing this for a couple of reasons.
The first reason is that as you've heard, we're making bigger investments in social impact work as a company. So we're really excited to be able to use Oktane as a space to listen and to hear from our customers, our non-profit customers and understand sort of the context that they're working in, because it's going to inform our work a little selfishly, but hopefully make it, make it better. So that's one piece. I've met with so many of our non-profit customers over the last two days, organizations very large, some of whom you'll hear from today, but also organizations that are very, very small. I can tell you there's amazing work and amazing impact happening everywhere, and there's a lot of good stuff ahead, so I'm excited about that.
The other reason we are elevating this conversation this year is that we think that the stakes have never been higher and you heard some of that from Lauren this morning in terms of the kinds of issues that we're facing in our local communities and in the world. So we really want to give a little bit of space to talk about that as a community and come together and understand how we can help. So over the next 45 minutes, I really want us to focus on learning and listening. You'll hear from some of the amazing organizations that really need our help and they need technology, they need resources, but they also need smart partnerships and smart partnerships from the private sector. So we're going to talk a little bit about that as well.
So I would like to introduce our incredible panel of non-profit leaders. To my left is Eric Arnold, CIO of PAC, next to him is Michael Duggan, the global CIO of Oxfam International, and then on the end, Lauren Woodman, CEO of Net Hope, who hopefully all of you got a chance to meet this morning on the keynote stage. So please join me in welcoming this group to our lunch. So I'd like each of you to introduce yourself. So tell us about your organization, your mission, your role with the group, and then, where in the world do you operate who you serve. So we'll start with you Eric.
Erik Arnold: Great. So first of all, thank you Erin and thanks to all of you, for taking the time to attend the session and learn a little bit about what we do, how we use digital in our work and start a conversation. So I work with PATH. I describe PATH as a global health innovation company that also happens to be a non-profit. We do a lot of work that involves a vaccine creation and delivery, a drug creation, medical devices, diagnostics, digital tooling for the governments in the countries where we work and a lot of policy and advocacy work to help those governments modernize their systems.
We work in about 70 different countries. I wear two hats with the organization. One, I am the CIO for mid size international business that needs all of the tools that an international business needs from finance tools to network infrastructure to security systems and records management. And I work with our programs on how our programs can modernize using digital tools for data collection, analytics, and medical records innovation in the field
Erin Baudo Felter: Eric thank you. Michael.
Michael Duggan: Much like Eric, again, I'm very grateful for the opportunity to talk to everybody here and, explain our story. Oxfam is a grouping, a confederation of 20 NGO'S that come under the Oxfam brand and they're increasingly working by closely together. We have about 8,500 people and 52,000 volunteers working across roughly 91 countries, although the Pacific really helps with those numbers. Our mission is essentially to address both the results of poverty, but also the causes of it. So we do direct humanitarian work, we do long-term development work, but we also do an awful lot of advocacy because our belief is that the causes of poverty are typically man-made, and as a result, we'd like to address a lot of those core issues on it based on a right spaces for the people that we help a globally, which number's around 25 million people.
I suppose the bad news is that demand for our services increasing, we're responding to about 10 category one and category two emergencies at the moment. That's twice the number that we were dealing with five years ago. I’m supposed to give you an idea of what that means. I think the very tragic events that are occurring in the south east of the U.S, would be in around the category two. But typically the countries that we operate in do not have the capacity to respond like the U.S can do to this humanitarian crisis.
Erin Baudo Felter: Thank you. Lauren.
Lauren Woodman: So Net Hope has preserved contortion of 52 non-profits, international organizations, all of whom are focused on a humanitarian aid development and conservation. And so our member organizations came together about 16 years ago, to try and work together to figure out how to use technology more effectively, and recognizing that every nonprofit is resource constrained because we're responding to too many things, there's too many diseases to tackle the communities in which we work are resource constrained. If we came together and partnered with the technology sector, we could learn how to use technology more effectively and meet some of those constraints that we faced while capitalizing on the opportunity to really bring to the humanitarian development space, the greater impact that technology would open up for us.
So Net Hope as an organization itself is quite small compared to our member organizations. But when you look at our member organizations and especially when you combine it with the 60 or so technology partners that work very closely with us, we all feel pretty strongly that we have the opportunity to really learn and apply those lessons in lots of places that can have a pretty significant impact and really begin to move the needle in some of these critical areas.
Erin Baudo Felter: Great. Thank you. Hopefully as some of you heard this morning, OKta is joining with Net Hope as a partner on a new initiative, something called the Center for the digital nonprofit. And at the root of this new work is digital transformation, which apparently is a term Freddie doesn't like, but we're going to talk about it today. So I want to start with Lauren to get an understanding of what digital transformation means for the sector and sort of what's at the root of this new work. And then I'd like Eric and Michael to maybe bring that to life a little bit based on the direct work that their organizations are doing. Let's start with Lauren. What is digital transformation for the non-profit sector and why does it matter?
Lauren Woodman: It's a great question. Let me start with your second question first, why does it matter? So two years ago, we, the global community came together and approved the sustainable development goals. We've all been talking about the sustainable development goals which were a follow on to the millennium development goals that we had passed at the turn of the century. The sustainable development goals set out for us in the global community, the objectives that we wanted to reach to address poverty and disease and sustainability and a whole slew of issues that the global communities said these are issues that we need to address.
The challenge with that is that if you look at all of the good work that happens around the world, what about $7 trillion short of having the resources that we need to even come close to meeting the SDG is. I don't know if any of you guys have $7 trillion laying around anywhere that you want to send over to the nonprofit community. But that's probably where we're not going to meet that delta. Just by throwing more money at the problem, we've got to figure out how to use the tools that we have more effectively to have greater impact with the resources that are available to us. Our organizations like PATH and CERN in direct relief it's also here.
Our non-profit organizations are great users of technology. They have absolutely figured out how to use technology well and maintain the scope of operations that they do largely through the support of technology. The question for us now is, how do we take that next step? How do we bring in the nimble business processes, the increased human capacity, the ability to partner on a more flexible and agile level in order to really extract all the value out of digital transformation that we can to bring it against this big problem, this big delta that we're facing in order to try and solve some of these problems?
Erin Baudo Felter: Mm-hm (Affirmative).
Lauren Woodman: That's why we care and that's why we have stood up the center and work with companies like OKta to say, “You're right in that space. What can we learn? What can we pull out from that and apply to the work that we do?”
Erin Baudo Felter: Great, great. Maybe Michael I’ll turn it to you next year. You're a CIO in this context, right? So talk to us about what this looks like as a CIO, what digital transformation actually means to you and your organization?
Michael Duggan: So I suppose I'll start by saying one of the challenges in our sector is the sheer challenges that organizations create for ourselves. We're operating a much like PATH in many many countries. That means a huge diversity of cultures, languages, and the challenge of trying to bring people along on a digital journey, is made very complex by having those distances between the people that we want to bring together to deliver that digital change.
The other challenge is the sheer diversity of our business models and operating models. Looking at my own organization and mapping it to your business. It's quite extraordinary the breadth of what we do. We do IT hardware. One of our affiliates in Belgium recycles 15,000 computers every year for the European Union and sells them. We do logistics we’re water trucking in Ethiopia at the moment? We have hundreds of trucks delivering water for long distances to those that are directly affected by drought.
We do banking now. Our humanitarian programs are increasingly shifting over to direct cash and digital cash. We do retail. We've got 1400 stores globally selling products to people. So trying to get a single journey that will cope with the diversity of all those different operating models, different models is very very challenging. I guess, the real key challenge in our sector going back to for example, the innovator's dilemma, is for us choosing what we're not going to do because we're going to do something different and we're going to do it digitally. That's probably the biggest conversation that I'm having with our leadership at this time because that's the hard one. Because we can't keep on adding things to our model we already have a starved core. As our organizations we've got limited capacity to invest.
So what other things that we're going to invest will be transformational, and will have significant impact with our beneficiaries. That's a really tough one because unlike most businesses when we divest, when we leave something, in many cases people get hurt. We are delivering vital essential services to an awful lot of people. So we have to be very very careful about how we do that. So this is the real challenge I feel in our organizations. Getting the space for our leadership and the resources needed to actually embrace the opportunity that digital provides and be actually able to change our organizations to become more agile, more flexible, more responsive, and most of all delivering more impact with our beneficiaries.
Erin Baudo Felter: Erick what about you?
Erik Arnold: Yeah, it's interesting. I think in some ways, it certainly resonates with me that digital transformation is a somewhat overused term and it also is a handy shorthand sometimes. But it's difficult with the term like digital transformation that means so many individual things to so many individual people to coalesce a strategy around it. So what we've tried to do, is really build a strategy around execution and impact and trying to get our organization thinking about how they can execute better and how they can measure their impact better, how they can get better data, how they can get data faster, how we can take advantage of the connectivity that's coming into the developing world over the past five years, and I talk about how we really shouldn't bet against the network.
The Internet is happening and people in Africa are experiencing it via mobile. It's our responsibility to help our own organizations as well as helped the beneficiaries that we work with, to take advantage of the innovation that's happening in this space and it's happening much, much faster than, than a lot of folks that I work with are used to. So you may have 20, 30 years of public health experience and the last five years in terms of, of digital innovation in the health space has been tremendous. So I think we should be very engaged, not just in thinking how are businesses can run in more efficient ways, but in thinking about how the technology that we have access to can kind of help us drive impact. We've been Okta customers for four years now. I joke that of all the modern online systems that we've implemented internally, I got the most positive feedback about the accepted implementation, which was fascinating to me.
But it helped get everybody kind of onto that single pane of glass that saw all of the online applications and started envisioning, a workflow and way to interact with the organization that was just fundamentally different. There was a lot of scanning and printing and faxing and shipping of financial transactions and suddenly people remembered how to log into a financial system and couldn't then get their work done. So it's a different equation for me and kind of how I look at the sector, I look at our organizations and how I look at kind of how we interact with the beneficiaries, and I think we'll see the adoption experience very different as well. We often have and I'm sure all three of us have great stories about how … Where we've seen digital solutions make tremendous impact directly with beneficiaries, and then the more boring stories about where we've seen digital solutions make our organization's a much more innovative.
Erin Baudo Felter: It's actually kind of my next question and maybe like you did continue with that and take it, which is that, there are creative solutions that you are implementing. Whether they be with Okta or others, bring that to life for us, I guess specifically I want you guys to talk about when it works, when something is right, how does that impact your mission? What does that look like on the ground? And maybe you can give an example of, a share of this and that.
Erik Arnold: One of the things that PATH does we have ... It does all of its work in partnership with other organizations whether it’s a huge believer in public private partnership. And like Garvey for the last 15, 20 years, we work in partnership with pharmaceuticals to, to create vaccines for specific diseases that are enormous burdens. Not just from loss of life but, but also economic coordinates in these areas. So PATH is one of the leading research institutions around malaria with malaria control and malaria vaccine malaria accounts for tens of thousands of deaths around the world. Half of those deaths are children under five. Every year there's about a $12 billion estimated economic impact in Africa alone because of the burden of malaria disease.
Over the past few years we've been working in Southern Zambia with the government of Zambia in partnership with Tablo to help transform a data collection process that was very manual into one very digital. So what this used to look like was that some areas its spread by a parasite carried by a female of a specific species of mosquito. And part of how you track the spread of malaria is either by malaria cases, or tracking the spread of the mosquito itself. You can track with the spread of the mosquito by laying or grab a trap in the ground, which is a PVC pipe with some pheromone in the bottom, you come back two weeks later, you count the number of mosquitoes up the specific type, log that in a book, get on your motorcycle, drive to the next one, repeat and maybe a month or two later that that makes its way into a database in Lusaka.
Around malarial disease, people who contract malaria may or may not be near a facility, a healthcare facility where they can get care. If they’re the first priority is to get them care when they get there. They may not be the right medications, the right treatment options because the facility may not be aware that malaria mosquito has spread into that region. So often the government of Zambia and many governments are dealing with a huge delay from the point at which data may become available to the point at which data becomes useful.
So we did a program where we armed 2,400 local healthcare workers with a mobile device and a data collection tool on that device that would go out into communities and survey where there were outbreaks of malaria, survey the household where the malaria outbreak appeared. And then, within a hundred meters of that household itself, that data in near real time is uploaded into a centralized system for the district that then is transformed and loaded into a data model in tableau that then is available to the Ministry of Health of Zambia and to the program partnership that delivers a bed nets, insecticides, medications, and things out in front of the disease. While PATH is working with GSK on the vaccine, we're also doing a tremendous amount of work around the control of malaria. And so this program, what we've seen in the last two years is a 93% drop in deaths for children under five in southern Zambia. It's a dramatic dip in the disease.
Erin Baudo Felter: I was going to applaud that to you.
Erik Arnold: What's even a better news is that now the government of Zambia has said that they're going to use a similar program, expanded out nationally and are working with all the governments in the borders of Zambia, encouraging them to use the same model. They've declared that they're going to eliminate malaria, not just control it by the year 2020. So through this combination of readily available treatment options delivered more effectively through a better, faster higher quality data where we're seeing a country really make amazing strides in a short period of time against a really difficult disease.
Erin Baudo Felter: That's amazing. Thank you. Michael, what about you? Can you share an example?
Micheal Duggin: Sure. So from our perspective, I think the greatest impact where we've seen real transformational change is in our humanitarian capability where we've moved from a situation six, seven years ago where we from a humanitarian perspective delivered codes. That's what we did. Whether that was a basic food stuffs, basic material for a migrant camps, tents, cooking utensils, to woman now her approximately 40%, 42 % of all of our humanitarian effort is now cash to donors just like to support the beneficiaries. Still the way around we want that process to go.
That is really shifting our thinking on how the future of humanitarian is going to operate, particularly as cautious something that can be done digitally. We're part of the cash alliance, we are very ambitious on our program at this point to a push as much as possible of our humanitarian response through digital cash because the benefits are extraordinary. The key one is that we don't affect local markets. One of the biggest challenges where we've done a humanitarian implementations and this is just a general effect of our sector, is that we've damaged local marketplaces when we start giving away goods. Those goods will obviously affect the local supply chain. Markets traders are unable to compete with free. That's very, very hard to do.
And the other issue is that the worst people in the world to define what a poor person in a country wants is somebody sitting in Oxford or Boston, the best person in the world to spend money is a poor person. So we're shifting that power to the beneficiary and we're letting them make the decisions. And what digital cash is providing on top of that is a couple of things. one of them which we've really gotten a significant return on, particularly in countries such as Iraq and Syria, where people have a, I suppose a perspective of taking money from other people, it's giving them their dignity back because we're giving them the cash discreetly. They're not having to queue open lines, they're able to get the money directly without actually having literally on a weekly basis. It's preloaded into cards, onto mobile phones and the benefits of that is again, two fold. One, they got their dignity back, but the other one is that from a gender perspective, typically where you create situations, where you have to get goods or money, cash money, men would go and do that.
With digital cash, we're finding much more reach and engagement with women. And from our perspective, again, it's absolutely critical because they tend to be the people that spend the money in the most effective manner for their families. So I would say things like digital cash, they're transforming our ability, they’re transforming our speed of delivery, but the most important aspect of it I suppose it’s giving the people that we help choice, it's giving them dignity. So our ambition by 2022 is that 70, 75 percent of all of our humanitarian response will be done by cash, and it will be done digitally.
Erin Baudo Felter: I think it's so interesting to hear this because to maybe many of us in the room as donors in these situations, it seems counter intuitive to give somebody cash. You've just outlined all the incredible reasons why it's the smarter thing to do and why that's it's the more impactful thing to do. So I think that's again part of this learning, back and forth between different sectors and I guess on that, and Lauren I'll put this to you first as a final question before we open it up to the audience. How can the private sector engaged with the non-profit sector? How can we do it in a smart way? How can we do it in a way that really delivers what you actually need and avoid the things that you don't need?
Lauren Woodman: That is a great question, and probably one of the hardest ones that we try and crack and that hope. And having joined in that hope from the private sector, and now I've been on both sides of this conversation, it's funny in that when I was in the private sector, I say, “Oh, non-profits just don't understand.” And now that I'm on the non-profit side I say, “Oh, since the private sector just doesn't understand.” I don't know if I'm part of the problem or hopefully trying to be part of the solution, but I think there's lots of different ways and let me be very concrete in that. What works in the private sector, doesn't always work in the humanitarian development conservation sector. You can't pick up a solution from retail and stick it into healthcare, nor can you pick up a solution from private sector healthcare and stick it into a humanitarian healthcare scenario.
But there are huge elements of that that are relevant. And there are big pieces where we can say gosh, that is a really innovative way to do that. How might we apply that in the non-profit sector? And while I think it's easy for us to look and identify the technology solutions and say, oh, I need six of this widget and 60 that widget and two pieces of tape and I'm good. It's actually the people capacity and the culture and the business process and the back and forth and the open conversations around what really worked and what was really hard and what was really the critical elements that are quite often are based on the technology but aren't just the technology themselves.
Erin Baudo Felter: Mm-hm (Affirmative).
Lauren Woodman: And it's one of the reasons that we stood up the center and talking to our members. One of the big challenges we found was it's not in learning from technology and having access to technology is a big challenge for the sector as a whole, but it really is this, the interaction, the back and forth, the opportunity to have a safe space to have a conversation and have a meaningful conversation about what works and what doesn't. And the center gives us the opportunity to look at business process, to look at people capacity and to look at the technology so that we can bring the whole solution and adapt that for the work that we do in the sector from the private sector.
So in terms of being concrete, I encourage companies to engage with non-profits. And I mean that by saying, listen, we've got people that are experts in security, we have folks that are experts in logistics, if you have a question, here's some folks that you can call. Those are really small micro things that sometimes are critical. I can't tell you the number of calls that we get from numbers that they say, can you please just find someone who can answer two quick questions for me about how to set up this device? And that's just hard sometimes. So there's lots of little ways to do it. There are certainly ways to engage with organizations like New Hope or with our members directly, to sit down and really have a conversation about what they need.
What Eric might need and what PATH might need this week may be very different than what Michael Needs. And so we're not going to discover that just by saying, I have widgets and I decided to give you widgets. That doesn't always work and frankly sometimes creates more challenges in. And then it's free like a puppy, not free like a beer to steal a phrase from the open source. I totally dated myself with that statement. And then I also encourage organizations to frankly put their money where their mouth is.
If you want to step up and be part of this conversation, non-profits are resource constrained. These are hard problems. They solve themselves for free and they have an impact on the entire world that we're all operating in. And for global companies, it's been remarkable over the last 15 years to really watch global company say, gosh, those things used to be removed from the challenges that I'm facing. But in an interconnected world and a world where we are all working in 50, 60, 80, a hundred countries, these issues are on our back doorstep and they really are issues that we're going to have to put our talent, our resources, and frankly our money together to figure out how we solve them.
Erin Baudo Felter: Yeah, absolutely.
Eric Arnold: Yeah, I think the fundamental equation is changing right now. Where it used to be very very easy for organizations to donate shrink wrap software, it's much more difficult to do that with services, and we understand. Like there are real costs associated with managing and hosting a secure online platform, and making that platform that available to organizations to leverage, we have to consider that cost and that equation. I think it’s something we have to come together and we have to talk about that. The solutions that are there in front of us are still things that nonprofits candidate should be using. And that said, there's also so much more.
There are things that we're seeing now around the evolution of security and data privacy policies across the entire globe of how our African governments starting to experience that are emerging markets are starting to emerge, connectivity is becoming more readily available, and ministries of health are starting to think about how online platforms can be useful, but then they're also talking about data sovereignty. So, how could we maybe come together as non-profits with governments and private industry to have a conversation about what are appropriate policies that help the adoption of innovative digital tools?
So there are different ways that I think we can think about the engagement. Everything from ... We need people to come in and advise on specific solutions, we need a great pricing models that help us have a predictable pricing for progressive tools and modern online solutions, and we need probably higher level engagement across multiple organizations from very different sectors to have probably a longer term more meaningful conversation about a change and adoption of digital.
Erin Baudo Felter: Okay.
Eric Arnold: Yeah, I absolutely agree that what we as a sector, as we're becoming increasingly professionalized and increasingly digitized, we need sustainable solutions and we have unique vertical needs. And we want to have the conversation particularly with the tech sector, around how we can be helped by that. Rather than the free licenses, we have quite unique needs. They need to take into account the context and the places that we work, although we would always argue that these are the emerging markets for you, so you should be paying attention, and obviously critical for me for example, is if we're talking about cash as an example, we have 25 million beneficiaries. That's a lot of identities and we also wanted to deliver other services on top of that.
So how do we manage 25 million identities? These are the types of conversation that I like having with partners like Okta, and how you can help us do that at a global level. And of course, within the context of the dramatic changes we've seen in the last three to five years around data protection and privacy, which is probably going to be the greatest challenge we face over the next five years. Just the scale of that challenge, is keeping most of us up at night.
Erin Baudo Felter: Thank you. I'd like to turn it to all of you. If you have questions, there's a couple of folks with microphones in the audience to raise your hand. To one up here in the front.
Frank: I've got two questions. One's more broad and one's a little bit more specific. So like Eric said, digital transformation means different things to different people, to me, digital transformation is very indicative of the transition, especially in a lot of nonprofits from an industrial age organizations and information age organization.
Eric Arnold: Mm-hm (Affirmative).
Frank: And as part of that, I was wondering what you all do around sort of codifying your social return on investment in the digital age, which is very hard for nonprofits to begin with, but easier in the industrial age when you're talking about locations and things like that and much harder in the digital age? Then the other piece is in also making that digital transformation. There are a lot of internal process. You either need to change the non-Profits. One of the things that's always been relatively esoteric to non-profits is the sort of financial piece, right? And how donations come in, how they get spent, leads to more of a Capex style financial bent, and now with the way technology's going, it's focused much more on Opex. So what, if anything, have your organization's done around making that switch with your finance departments from a Capex to Opex?
Eric Arnold: On the first question. Before I joined PATH, I've been with PATH on now for over eight years. And prior to that I spent 15 years in e-commerce and the digital media industry. And so, myself made that transition into the sector and had to shift my thinking about how you measure success. So, there is a real drumbeat in the non-profit sector about the way we measure success is impact and how many in and depends on the organization on what you think that impact is. For us, it's life saved, it's disease burdens, it's reduced economic impact of diseases, it's a women empowered to control their own contraception and it's depending on what that goal is. The shift I think has been that there's much more availability in tooling and data, to aggregate information and allow people to ask more complex questions about how they can view impact and view the factors that lead to impact.
On the second question, it's interesting that when I joined the organization, the IT budget was the lowest in any department in any part of the global org. And part of that was due to software and hardware donations. What that led to was a huge fracturing of the environment. So whatever was least expensive or donated at that time was what got put in. And so, multiple HR systems, multiple hardware standards, all different kinds of networking web solutions actually were there to be a cost. I want that crooked number on certain services that I need it to be predictive, I need it to be affordable, But I also get that there's real coggs there. And let's talk about what those codes are, what the right margin is, and what we can afford and what that impact is.
But my focus then is on our adoption. There's responsibility I think on the partners that we work with to be ethical and responsible on how they engage with the nonprofit sector. And I have a responsibility as a CEO to make sure that we're consuming and using and adopting solutions in the right way. We often need help with that because it's a huge change management issue for us, and there’s not a lot of investment opportunity either in time or money to take back into the organization to get off of the tools or the easiest part to get people into working in different way.
Yeah, I mean, look, impact is an extraordinary complex thing to measure. We have entire departments involved in that. I guess a story I often used to explain why it's so difficult, is a program that we had in Malawi where our country program worked with the community over a period of two and a half years. Essentially they had a clinic that had shut down, I'd run out of funds or previous NGO had opened it and they spent two and a half years lobbying the local government to reopen the clinic and stop it from the health service. And if you were to step back and look at that program, it took two and a half years to deliver, and a hundred percent of the cost of that program were actually our costs, staff costs. So it looks pretty bad.
But on the other hand, we've enabled to a community now to understand how they can demand services that they've paid taxes for from the government. It's a sustainable project. It would have been easy to get 40,000 and open that clinic. So trying to measure impact in a nuanced way is a very complex thing in our sector. But on the other hand, we as a sector need to be much more open. We are working, for example, with a lot of the European donors with a standard call at each so that you can see the flow of money right through to the beneficiary. One of our challenges is that we work with 3,200 partners. So how do we help them demonstrate the impact? It's a fantastic question. If I had the answer, I'd be very happy. If you have the answer, I'd love to hear it. But it's probably one of the greatest challenges that we have because particularly when you are long term development and rights programming, which is where we want to be. It's a hard thing to measure that.
Lauren Woodman: Can I also add one thing to that?
Erin Baudo Felter: Yeah, please.
Lauren Woodman: Measuring social impact is critically important, so don't interrupt anything I'm getting ready to say as not believing that we should measure the impact. But I also think we have to be really really careful about how we think about measuring social impact, because the emphasis on data to show impact versus a dollar creates some really screwed up incentives in the sector. And it is really hard to listen to folks tell me all about how no non-profit should ever spend more than 10 percent on overhead. 90 percent should go to program. There's not an organization in this world that gets by at running just 10 percent on overhead. And so, what'd you end up with is you have well intentioned donors who come and say 90 percent must be spent on program, another 10 percent you need to pay for your people and your marketing and your buildings in your air conditioning and your IT and your paper and your pens and your lunches in your travel and everything else. The other 90 percent needs to go out there.
Oh, and by the way, I want to see impact and I'd like to see it every six months. And the way that I want you to tell me about that impact is in a report different than every other donor that is that is out there, and I'd like to see numbers and data. By the way, I'm not going to pay to invest in the systems that I want to allow you to collect that data, because that's going to come out of your 10 percent. So what ends up happening is the incentive is to go out and measure how many widgets do we get off the door? How many people came through the door? How many people came through that health clinic? Zero. Zero. You failed. And you didn't even put an entire community.
The non-profit sector has been around for 80, 100, 150 years. There are a lot of folks out there that know exactly what they're doing. I'm not saying that we shouldn't hold the sector accountable. We should absolutely hold the sector accountable. But you also got to trust the folks who are trying to do the right thing. And then in a world where new tools are increasingly becoming available in new models are becoming available, the right way for us to get to the answer to your question, which is the critical question, is through an open dialogue and partnership and being willing to try new things and being willing to let go of some ideas that maybe sound right when we first came up with them, but we recognize that when we start rolling them out and really seeing what the impact or maybe they didn't turn out exactly the way that we thought they would.
Let me too act as horn, but let me too frankly the horns of a lot of our partners which part of the reason that we've all come together is to try and solve that problem in a much more open and back and forth kind of way, because we recognize that some of the things that we've tried while they seem promising probably need a little bit more work, and we need to kind of sharpen the pencils and roll up our sleeves and maybe take another step at this.
Eric Arnold: Yeah, I agree with everything you've just said, Lauren. And I suppose the other aspects as well, apart from what we want is to see people paying audit takes, is the ability to fail. That's something that we find so very hard in our sector to accept that failure is sometimes necessary, in order to move on what we do. And unfortunately the public's perception, and a lot of institutional donors’ perception is that failure is not acceptable. That drives incredibly bad behaviors. It's something that we're having in our own summits in Vancouver small sales pitch, but we're actually having a fail from it, right? We're actually going to actually openly start talking about failure in our sector because if you don't talk about your failures, well then you don't learn. And that's such an important thing for our community that we learn from each other. But just having that openness to be able to say, you can work out both, this is what we take from it and the next program will be better. When we talk about technology and the potential for technology, we have to accept that there will be failure associated with that.
Erin Baudo Felter: Great. I think that's a perfect note to end on actually. I want to thank Frank for a very good question, and I want to thank Lauren and Michael and Eric. We as Okta intend to continue this conversation and are very excited too, and to talk about things like failure and to talk about things that are hard, and I hope that all of you, if you can stick around and I think we're happy to also answer more questions after the panel. So thank you all for coming and thank you for being here.
Eric Arnold: Thank you.
Michael Duggin: Thank you.
Erin Baudo Felter: Appreciated.
Technology is changing how we do business and how we do good, and nowhere is the opportunity for impact greater than in the nonprofit sector. Join us for lunch and an engaging panel discussion with leaders from global humanitarian organizations Oxfam, Path and NetHope. Learn how these organizations are responding to critical global challenges and innovating with technology to serve the world's most vulnerable communities. Hear about the tools, resources and best practices these leaders are utilizing – and meet others from Okta's customer community who share your interest in leveraging technology to accelerate social good. Erin Baudo Felter, Okta for Good Director, to moderate.