At this year’s 6th annual roundtable, sponsored by the Journal of Accountancy, many familiar topics came up: the importance of cloud computing, improving technology training for all staff, and cybersecurity. These 3 nonprofit best practices are important to focus on and simple changes can reap big results.
Struggling Mid-Sized Accounting Firms
According to the experts that were part of the roundtable, mid-sized accounting firms are lagging behind small and large-sized firms. The main area of concern is technology and how it is implemented, maintained, and strategized.
Cybersecurity is an important aspect of technology, and if you are lagging in this area, your entire IT infrastructure is at risk. Cyber-attacks most predominantly occur for mid-sized and small-sized nonprofits, because they are seen as an easy target. Most mid-sized and small-sized businesses do not have staff that is dedicated to cybersecurity. Therefore, criminals have an easier time accessing any personal information or data they can use for their gain.
Cloud computing is an excellent option for mid-sized firms, since it seems to be bridging the gap in the technology world. Cloud computing services are set up through the internet, making them accessible to all sizes of companies, big or small. Because they are servicing multiple clients, cloud computing offers a higher and tighter security to protect their clients.
When companies get software through the cloud, it is less costly and can be shared among multiple mid-sized firms. This spreads out the cost of the software, so that quality software is attainable for small to mid-sized nonprofits.
Improvements Needed in Technology
It was made evident in the roundtable discussion that the need for an overall improvement in technology is a must. Many nonprofits feel overwhelmed because they are expected to learn and apply a multitude of technology solutions within their organization.
As a small to mid-sized nonprofit, it would be wise to partner with a strong consulting firm who can teach, advise, and guide you in all areas of technology. They can show you how to improve cybersecurity practices and help you find the right cloud-based software for your nonprofit. Most nonprofits do not have the means, nor the resources, to invest in cybersecurity. By understanding your nonprofit’s strengths, you can partner with someone that can help with your weaknesses.
Simple Changes = Big Results
Experts from the roundtable have suggested a few simple changes for nonprofit best practices:
- Encrypting emails: Encryption can provide that extra layer of security to protect sensitive information.
- Training: Training your team how to screen for phishing schemes, how to craft strong passwords, and other cybersecurity measures doesn’t need be a huge undertaking. A little training can go a long way to improve your nonprofit’s cybersecurity.
- Updating hardware: Many people turn to updating software before they think about updating the hardware for their staff. Something as simple as updating to a bigger monitor can help make workstations more comfortable and prevent mistakes by enlarging the information on the screen.
Technology for your nonprofit is extremely important but it can also be a lot to try and incorporate all the suggested nonprofit best practices from experts. It can be overwhelming to try and tackle everything on your own, so finding a consulting partner is very wise. They can help your nonprofit feel more comfortable with all the different aspects that go in to technology for a nonprofit.
RBP Methods helps right-brained people navigate a left-brained world. We offer consulting and software that conforms to nonprofit best practices and are happy to discuss security and other needs with you. We offer software for nonprofit financial management, donor and grant management, and more to help your organization run smoothly. Contact us today or call 503-648-9051.