The resources we need to be successful

Network Staffing

Our proposed strategic plan would require the following additional staff, starting in 2022:
  • Stipended Network Positions
    • 5 Basecamp Community Builders - Quarterly Stipend ($10K - ½ FTE PM), Rotates ($200K annually)
    • 20 Project Manager Stipends - 1 Quarter duration($10K - ½ FTE PM-ish), 1 per basecamp per quarter ($200K annually)
  • 2 Full Time Employees for Community of Practice
  • 2 Full Time Employees for National Action Teams
  • 1 Full Time Employee for Partnerships
These positions represented an estimated $1.5M in salaries.

Cross-Functional Staff Support

To execute this strategy, we will need consistent and dedicated support from Finance, D-team, and People Operations. We propose .5 - 1 FTE on D-team, Finance, and People Operations to consistently support the Network portfolio and the vast community it represents.
Integration with product & tech teams for communities of practice.
We anticipate needing approximately 40 hrs/month from each Product & Tech (engineering, product, design, user research, data science) team to liaise with the community of practice. The Communities of Practice will serve as formal structures to help socialize our Code for America practices, and also up-level both HQ work & Network relationships and projects.

Fundraising (mechanisms for grassroots funding & redistribution/cost sharing).

  1. 1.
    Grassroots sustainability. To develop more financial power for community-based work, we propose developing a grassroots fundraising model for the Brigade program which is tied to member registration. Members would be encouraged to contribute annually based on their ability. Contributing is voluntary and on a sliding scale ($5 - $100). Half those resources will go directly to the “home Brigade” of the individual, and the other half goes to the national network, which 1) help cover shared costs (e.g. events, tech stack) and 2) help resource under-resourced projects, Brigades, and people. This would be a shift from the current reality, in which individual small-dollar donations are either nonexistent or do not represent a significant amount of funding for most Brigades or for the program as a whole. There are fundraising models from similar justice-oriented organizations, like the above, that we could learn from and adapt. To start, we would pilot this with a small number of interested brigades.
  2. 2.
    New Finance & Fundraising platform. We need a platform to easily collect donations from registered volunteers, allow Brigades to do project-based fundraising, approve expenses, and distribute funds. We recommend moving Brigade fiscal operations to Open Collective to further scale our fundraising & finance capabilities to support both local Brigade and national projects.
  3. 3.
    Institutional funders. We will need to engage with our current funders for an update on our new strategic plan, and engage new funders for this work.

Organization goals & messaging refinement

We will need to make updates to our website copy, all other general talking points, Development team resources, and organization goals (e.g. CWI, OKRs) to better reflect our new strategic direction.

Publicity/recruitment support

We need a consistent, persistent, and clear call for volunteers which should be easily accessible on the website, in our email communications, press interviews, blog communications, and more.

Support defining parameters of partnerships

We need input from the programs team on local partnership selection criteria.

Partnership recruitment/promotion

We will need help with assets for Calls for Proposals - locally and nationally and with communications pathways to reach potential partners for national projects (i.e., Get Your Refund, Reimagining 911).

Support for social media campaigns, newsletters, and multi-channel communications

We need support from the Marketing and Comms team to build our community by reflecting back our wins and power to recognize our Network, build community, recruit more volunteers and strengthen and grow our Network.

Communication channels

With all of the changes we are proposing, we will need organizational clarity and consistency in how we communicate and where. We are in the process of defining clear communication channels for all roles within the Network and aim to make recommendations on changes to our communication platforms and infrastructure as a key part of ReVisioning implementation.
Based on years of staff feedback as well as direct feedback during the ReVisioning process, key communications priorities are:
  • Standardize communication channels and provide clear guidance of what gets shared and to which channels;
  • Prioritize communication so that any member can find out key information, quickly, without needing to be constantly “plugged in”; and
  • Make Network-wide communication accessible to members so that Brigade leaders are not the sole conduit of information from the Network to the local Brigade.

New and refined tech stack

As we restructure the governance of our Network and communication channels, we will need to define what platforms we use for which kind of communications. This could require upgrading existing Slack channels or establishing new knowledge and comms platforms (e.g. discourse/notion). Further, we will need to update our tech stack (e.g. AWS, Heroku, Figma).

Network Representation in Code for America Board

We recommend considering proportionate Community Leader or Movement perspectives on the Code for America Board to bring more parity and equity to the decisions made at this level of leadership. We also recommend that the Network have a Board Observer role.

Financial Strategies

With a new mission and set of strategies, we anticipate more opportunities to raise resources for the Network. The chart below outlines types of funding we have proven success with, or with a strong likelihood of success.
Estimated Resources Annually
Institutional Support
Grants from foundations
Ford, Knight
$500,000 - $2M
Joint initiatives
Network resources for joint CfA initiatives (e.g. GYR, 911)
Citi Foundation ($2M), Microsoft
$500,000 - $2M
Training/Curriculum support
Funding for training, skill building, capacity building
Grassroots donations model (for Brigades)
Member-based contributions on sliding scale (opt-in)
$1000 / Brigade
Grassroots donations model (for National)
Member-based contributions on sliding scale (opt-in)
$25,000 (in year 1-2); $60,000 (in year 3)
General Operating Support
Network resources from GoS
$500,000 - $1M
Earned Revenue
Fellowship government partners