People are the lifeblood of Hart Square, with their passion and dedication enabling us to deliver invaluable work within the non-profit sector.  

We are committed to not only developing and collaborating with people who are experts in their field, but to highlight the impactful work that they do.  

As part of this commitment, we want to recognise some of these individuals in our community, whether that’s a member of our team, an individual within a non-profit or indeed within a technology partner organisation. That’s why we have decided to spotlight those individuals through a series of profiles, to share their experiences and insights.  

The first of these profiles is with our Managing Director, Alan Perestrello as he shares his journey to his new role and the vision for the future of Hart Square. 

Could you introduce yourself and tell us a bit about your role here at Hart Square? 

I am Alan Perestrello and I’m Managing Director having recently acquired Hart Square, which means I’m new to the team and in some respects learning, like a newbie would as I join the company.  

I’ve been working in technology for over 25 years, covering industries including advertising, media planning, and online games, through to consultancy, managed services and then running specialist software provider to the membership and charity space. My broad and varied experience brings an understanding of what the sector needs, in terms of using digital technologies to transform and enable their organisations to grow.  

Having worked with the membership and charity space for probably close to 20 years now and having done lots of different things in that time, I have a huge passion for the sector. I not only enjoy working in the sector, but I believe in the critical work it carries out. What the sector does is fundamental to supporting people across all spectrums of their life, either from a personal or from a professional and regulatory perspective so what the sector does, I see it as being as important as having a government. We’re very fortunate in the UK that we have such a well-developed not-for-profit capability and I want to make sure that it can continue to do great things and that I can contribute to that in some way. 

Why did you decide to acquire Hart Square? 

Hart Square has an amazing reputation in the non-profit sector, and I wanted to ensure that that reputation continued to flourish and grow. I’ve always been hugely respectful and appreciative of what Hart Square has done for the sector, acting as a needed facilitator and intermediary between technology partners and clients, helping the sector deliver on a lot of the different change programmes. I wanted to see Hart Square continue to grow, so when the opportunity came about, I had to take it. 

I’ve always thought that Hart Square’s single biggest contributory factor is its independence and thought this is an excellent opportunity to strengthen that. As independent experts in the non-profit sector, Hart Square has no affiliations with any vendors or technology partners. In our previous iteration, that was sometimes called into question. 

Our focus always has, and will remain, on addressing the needs and challenges of their clients, and helping them achieve their ambitions. We are trusted to be their critical friend who will support their interests, and I want to continue to build on and reinforce this trust.  

What are your visions and goals for Hart Square? 

My vision for Hart Square is to make sure that it continues to deliver value and impact for clients. We will do this by bringing together our expertise, experience and guidance on how to better use and adopt technologies to enable organisations to achieve their goals. So, wherever we can add value to supporting our clients, adopt and maintain their technology transformation, that’s where I want us to be. Part of this will be deepening our commitment to transparency around how we work, including our independence, to ensure that there is greater clarity for the sector in terms of what we do and how we work. 

To achieve this, we will be looking to broaden our service portfolio based on client requirements. We will be increasing our engagement with the sector, requesting feedback from clients on what they love and what they need more of, so we can align our services to their needs. In addition, we would like to broaden our network of technology partners and increase our understanding of them. We will aim to make better use of the data we gather in our decision making, to enable our clients to make better decisions. Collectively, this will allow us to deliver greater value and ultimately have a greater impact for our clients.  

Are you seeking to change the way Hart Square collaborates with Technology Partners, or works with clients or its own team? 

There will be no structural changes to Hart Square, and we are not looking to bring any fundamental changes to the way we work. However, we acknowledge the current opportunity to embrace greater agility and openness to new possibilities. This involves a deliberate effort to reaffirm and redefine our company culture, ensuring that our identity and values resonate in everything we do. At our core, is our dedication to people, and aligning with individuals who share our ethos, focus, and unwavering dedication to our sector. 

As previously mentioned, I do want to continually grow our understanding of our clients and of where we can have a greater impact, and then ensure that we have the services and the capability and the experience to guide them through that and deliver that impact. Similar to this, we also want to grow our understanding of technology partners to revalidate our understanding of what they do, their evolving service portfolio, and what they’re good at.  

You’ve previously mentioned you plan to enhance Hart Square’s event programme. Could you share what this may look like or any new initiatives? 

I’ve got some new initiatives which I’m still busy evolving, and I think they’ll take time to really bed down, as our first focus is to continue to deliver value for our clients. However, I’m really looking forward to enhancing our events programme. 

The informal community that Hart Square has created around those events, in terms of connecting the sector to share ideas and best practices, is something I will be looking to continue. It is an aspect that we will be evolving over the course of the next couple of months. In due course, we will be happy to present a broader vision of what that looks like – so stay tuned!  

Overarching this all is a commitment to transparency. I want to have lots of meaningful conversations with people in the sector to better understand where we can deliver that impact. So, if you have thoughts, ideas, comments or suggestions then please get in touch with me, either via LinkedIn, email or phone on +44 (0) 203 468 8767.  

If you are an existing or prospective technology partner or vendor to the non-profit sector, and you are wanting to know more about how we work with partners, join our upcoming technology partner event on 23rd April 2024. For more information and to register your interest visit: https://engage.hartsquare.co.uk/technology-partner-event-23-april-2024