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Our Paid Consulting Program

INN's technology team is focused on helping our 100+ member organizations in any way we can.

We now provide free hosting and support to over 40 member websites on our Largo platform and a significant portion of what we do involves improving the platform and supporting members so they can take maximum advantage of the tools we build.

We've made a lot of headway in the past couple of years reducing costs for members, eliminating duplication of effort, and getting members onto a stable platform that looks great and works well across devices.

But it's hard for us to help every member individually and there are many member (and non-member) organizations who would like us to do more and have expressed the willingness to pay for our services.

Specifically, we’ve heard from a number of INN members that they:

  • Have a hard time finding vendors/contractors who “get” what they’re trying to do and often wind up working with local agencies or freelancers who focus mostly on internet marketing or building small business sites so they don’t understand the considerations unique to news and content sites or nonprofits
  • Are often unhappy with the vendors/contractors they do have and/or are overpaying for subpar services
  • Would, in a number of cases, rather work with INN's tech team directly instead of an outside vendor. Given our current staffing and workload we typically haven't been able to do this if the request goes above and beyond what we’re able to do for "free" as a benefit of INN membership.

We also frequently hear from non-members that they:

  • Want to use the tools we have built (particularly Largo) but may require some help setting them up or customizing them to suit their needs
  • In some cases may require additional custom development to add functionality that we have not yet built
  • Would be willing to pay (provided our rates are competitive) for our services and even pay us to host their sites in the same way we host sites for members.

Until now we’ve been referring people to outside contractors and freelancers, but as we continue to grow our technology team we have the capability to take on some of this work ourselves.

For INN members, we will subsidize the cost of these services to keep them very affordable (see our rates for details). We will also, from time to time, take on work from non-members (at regular market rates).

Some examples of the services we offer include:

  • Content migration, design customization and custom development for members using our Largo platform beyond what we're able to do for "free" as a benefit of INN membership
  • Assistance with editorial design and development for news apps, data projects or special projects (including cleaning and analyzing data for news apps)
  • Ongoing or project-based support, training and assistance with story production
  • Assistance with general technology strategy, recruiting and hiring, and building and managing technology resources at your organization.

Taking on this additional paid work will allow us to:

  • Offset a portion of our costs and make our team more sustainable for the long-term by being less reliant on grants and other less-predictable sources of funding
  • Expand our technology team faster than would otherwise be possible and offer competitive compensation packages to help us recruit the best talent
  • Provide better service to members at lower rates than what they’re often getting now
  • Assist non-members with the adoption of tools we build (particularly our Largo platform)

We hope that this new program will be a win-win for members and for INN and that we'll now be able to provide an even higher level of support at a very reasonable cost.

If you're interested in working with us, we'd love to discuss your needs and how we can help. Get in touch with us here to learn more.

We've also assembled a list of frequently asked questions to provide more detail on the program.