Thousands more people will be able to earn and spend Time Credits for giving their time to volunteering as a result of support from SBT for Tempo.  Following completion of the SBT Design Programme, Tempo has won support of the SBT Investment Committee and has been welcomed into the portfolio of Social Enterprises and Charities.

Tempo exists to enable more people to volunteer and through using a time-based currency, people earn credits that can then be spent on a wide-range of activities and experiences. Since joining the Design Programme in December 2018, Tempo has developed a digital transformation strategy, which has led to them securing an initial 40 days of committed support from SBT and its world-class corporate partners.

Tempo CEO, Ian Merrill.

Tempo CEO, Ian Merrill.

Viki Taylor, Communications Manager at SBT spoke to Ian Merrill, CEO of Tempo, to get the low-down on the ambitious plans for the UK’s largest time-based currency, that encourages people to volunteer.

How do feel about winning investment from SBT and its corporate partners?

Tempo are delighted to be joining the SBT investment portfolio as it seeks to widen its impact by enabling many more people to become involved in volunteering.  The next important step in that journey is to harness digital technology in a way that benefits people who want to give time to their communities and we are excited about the difference that SBT’s corporate partners will make to that step change.

What is the focus for the first 6 months?

Kicking off our digital transformation implementation roadmap and working closely with Getronics, Permira and our Investment Director from Thomson Reuters.

Digital transformation is key to the growth of Tempo, how will it change Tempo as a Social Enterprise?

Through harnessing technology, we will aim to offer a digitally enabled user journey for people earning Time Credits, with better communication, personalised accounts, activity tracking and online spend booking. Also, our customers will be able to sign up more easily and have better visibility about the impact that is generated, and our spend partners will find it easier to list their offers and accept digital spend. We are also looking carefully at how to support people who are less digitally enabled to ensure they don’t miss out.

What are you most looking forward to coming out of the SBT Investment?

My experience of working with SBT staff and corporate partners during the Design Programme was that their expertise and constructive challenge really helped shape and hone our thinking.  For an organisation looking to scale something that has been previously successful, the need to re-visit our assumptions and also bridge gaps in our knowledge and capability is essential – and I look forward to much more SBT support and challenge as a result of the investment.

How does the Tempo team feel?

We are excited and keen to crack on.  We know that significant change and hard work is ahead of us, but we also know that what we can do in future can really enable many thousands more people to give their time volunteering and reap the benefits of that – that will inspire us to push on. 

By enabling anyone in society to volunteer, Tempo has already reached almost 60,000 people, around whom 50% had rarely or never volunteered before. Tempo enables many people who face barriers to volunteering to participate, strengthening communities and improving access to services and amenities. We look forward to watching them grow.