A DRUG and alcohol treatment charity says choosing Wiltshire IT services and solutions expert Mintivo as its strategic IT partner will help improve its service for the people who come to it for help.

The Bristol Drug Project (BDP), which provides harm reduction and treatment services for more than 3,000 people in and around the city every year, has signed a five-year deal with Mintivo to carry out a digital transformation and deliver round the clock IT support for more than 80 of the charity’s staff and volunteers.

Ben Judd, BDP’s Director of Business Development, said the 38-year-old charity is excited about the possibilities a sleeker, more functional IT system will offer it and believes the efficiencies it brings will mean an even better service for its clients.

“The sector we work in has embraced more modern ways of working as a means of engaging with people who have not traditionally engaged with drug and alcohol services but our IT systems have prevented us from fully taking that step,” he said.

“The ability to provide support via platforms like Microsoft Teams can improve accessibility for those who might find it hard to come into services due to work or family commitments.

“Working with Mintivo and getting the most out of the Microsoft licenses that we’re paying for but not using effectively will enable us to offer treatment in different ways,” he said.

The charity has workers based in all but one of the city’s GP services, where patients can be referred for harm reduction help. “Our current remote work set up is clunky and can mean that some of the work has to be done twice – and that workers have to come back to the office to do it.” said Mr Judd. “By enabling them to do their jobs efficiently away from the office we can reduce their burden and create more time to do the things they are brilliant at.”

He said have a cloud-based IT system where staff and volunteers can work on a laptop remotely will lessen the space pressure on its offices in Brunswick Square.

Mr Judd said Lacock-based Mintivo, which offers managed IT support, consultancy, cyber security and automation, will help it prepare the charity for growth in the future and give it the ability to take advantage of more advances in technology. “This digital transformation will future-proof our organisation and mean we can carry on meeting the needs of people in Bristol by making the best use of technology to enhance our stellar service,” he said.

He said Mintivo won the contract partly because of its work in the charity sector with the likes of Dorothy House Hospice, One25 and, most recently, Wiltshire Air Ambulance. “There are multiple things that impressed us about Mintivo but we felt there is a real desire to want to understand us as an organisation,” said Mr Judd.

“We weren’t just commissioning somebody who can resolve our current issues, we think we can use Mintivo’s expertise to help us think about the ways in which we can really harness IT to develop our offer.

“We consider ourselves to be very progressive in the work we do and we want our IT infrastructure to be just as cutting edge.”

Alex Jukes, Mintivo’s Commercial Director, said: “Being able to work remotely is going to make a huge amount of difference to BDP’s workers because they will be able to get more out of their day by seeing more clients and covering a bit more ground.

“It’s a really exciting prospect to be able to use the experience we’ve accumulated in this sector to benefit this very well respected charity and we are really looking forward to helping it reshape the way it works and giving it a platform to build for the future.”

Find out more about the charity at bdp.org.uk and about Mintivo’s services at Mintivo.co.uk.

Pictured: Mintivo Operations Director Mark Adams, left, and Commercial Director Alex Jukes, right, with Bristol Drug Project Director of Business Development Ben Judd, centre, at the charity’s base in Brunswick Square, Bristol

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