Top 10 Tips for Nonprofits

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This post was written by Nonprofit Software, who helps nonprofit organizations make smart and cost-effective decisions regarding their software purchases.  We understand that there are many considerations outside of software, so we developed this resource to take the guesswork out of nonprofit software, with everything from nonprofit volunteer management tips to donation management software advice.


Whether you are starting a nonprofit or expanding your existing nonprofit, there are a few important details that should not be overlooked.  From hiring to creating or enhancing programming to planning for the future, the approach to fostering your organizations stability should be a holistic one. The following is a list of tips for nonprofits that are frequently overlooked.  These tips have been divided into different areas of focus.



1. Conduct a needs assessment

When organizations take the time to do a needs assessment before they begin the hiring process they often find the best match for the position. Organizations need to take a look at the skills that their employees already have and also determine which skills are lacking. In doing so, they are more likely to promote from within which can eliminate costly training time and increase employee morale. Further, they are able to hire an individual with skills that fill in the gaps and round out the strengths of the organization.


2. Attracting the best candidates

Once you decide to post for a position, determine the qualifications or capabilities that are absolute requirements. These qualities should come out of your needs assessment. Then list the experiences or expertise that would be a bonus for an employee to have. Once you pare your desired skills down into these categories you can then sort your candidates into those that meet your absolute requirements and move forward from there.  It is important that you keep an open mind when looking for candidates and categorizing these qualifications and qualities can help you to keep your search as open as possible.


Strategic Planning

3. Conduct an environment assessment

Look around at the political, social, and economical environment and reflect on how these may affect your organization, as well as how your organization is acting in response to these factors. Understanding these will help you look for opportunities and avoid pitfalls.


4. Conduct an internal assessment

Analyzing your organizations weaknesses and strengths is a critical part of any strategic plan and truly should be part of an ongoing self-reflective process. By conducting this kind of assessment you are more likely to make decisions that further strengthen your organization and help you to understand your direction, roles and goals.


5. Establish mission statement and determine your organizational values

Having a clearly articulated mission statement will help you to shape programming, steer your course and detail your organizational values. This will guide you throughout your work and help you to make decisions as you move toward your goals.


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