Impact Story of the Year​

A story of high impact

We would like to share the story of Comic Relief as it is a perfect example of how Hyphen8 and Comic Relief worked in partnership to make an impact on several levels:

Impact on the internal team

to increase self-sufficiency and their ability to reflect programme design variations

Impact on their way of working

to transform their processes, reduce administration and optimise automated workflow

Impact evaluation

to capture Monitoring, Evaluation and Learning data via a grantee community to enhance tracking of the impact of grant-making
Hyphen8 was selected as Comic Relief’s partner following an RFP at the end of 2019. The discovery phase was completed pre-lockdown enabling us to build a close relationship with their team. Phased go lives took place between June and July 2020, including the launch of an emergency COVID-19 grants programme

Project objectives

Comic Relief’s main objectives for this project were driven by the  challenges and frustrations with their current system.

Deeper integrations

Limited ability to flow data from the grant management system to other core business systems led to inaccurate data being held and used elsewhere.

Reduce admin burden

Inefficient and unintuitive processes and functions resulted in precious programme staff time lost carrying out time consuming administrative tasks.

Flexibility to adapt

Challenges in amending workflows and forms resulted in moulding grant-making and management processes to fit with the system.

Increase self-sufficiency

Reduce reliance on external parties and provide internal teams with the ability to make changes, maintain forms and templates.

Streamline data journey

Inability to extract, report and share new sets of data resulted in inefficient processes to manually extract data, missed opportunities for learning, storying telling and fundraising, and greater risk.

Dream partnership

One of the keys to the success of this project, particularly as the team had to adjust to remote working during lockdown, was that Hyphen8 became an extension of the internal team.

In this recorded interview with James, he tells Hyphen8 CEO Elaine Forth why they chose Salesforce and the main improvements they hoped to make.

“The additional value of having Hyphen8 and what you brought to the project with regard to sector knowledge and recent experience you had delivering Salesforce systems to similar charities was one of the deciding factors of choosing Salesforce”

James Morris, Impact and Investment Product Manager, Comic Relief

Solution highlights

This short video showcases some of the solution components that have had the greatest impact and of which we are most proud including:

  • Flexible programme and call management set up which empowers the team to control the settings to reflect any programme design including forms, process stages, conditions and geographical area
  • Meeting management to allow funding applications to be passed through several decision meetings with an audit trail of who attended and mass-edit the decision
  • Multi-level dynamic Monitoring, Evaluation and Learning forms to capture ongoing narrative and metrics via a Community to measure grant impact

The approach


By scoping and sticking to MVP, the project was delivered on time and on budget even during the upheaval of lockdown

Agile delivery

Daily stand ups and regular retros helped to build trust and transparency.  Go live priorities had to switch to launch emergency Covid-19 grant programmes


We shared our knowledge with appointed system admins from the start. The team became ambassadors and trainers and now have the self-sufficiency they always wanted

Impact so far...

Flexible solution

to design and deliver any grant programme


to make change quickly

Reduce admin

through automated workflow

improved grantee experience

via Community engagement

Real-time impact reporting

dynamic multi-level monitoring forms

Integrated data flow

reconciled finance data and better reporting
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emergency Covid-19 grant applications
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grant applications processed

Comic Relief were able to process over 120 emergency Covid-19 grant applications quickly as part of an accelerated (and unplanned!) go live.  Their grants team processed over 1000 applications in the first couple of months after go live and have significantly reduced their administration time.