Industry Articles

Industry Articles

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Utilizing Technology to Manage and Win Grants

It’s a challenging time for nonprofit organizations. The “Great Recession” has dealt a double blow; there is more need in every community and less overall funding to help organizations deliver programs. Although 80% of nonprofit leaders anticipated greater demand for services in 2010, less than half believed their organizations would be able to meet this demand. Funding shortages and the resulting staff cutbacks simply won’t allow most nonprofits to meet heavy demand for services.

In the past two years, the total grant dollars awarded have fallen, and according to Foundation Center records, the 8.4% decline in 2009 was the largest ever recorded. By early 2010, nearly two-thirds of nonprofit organizations were operating with less than three months of cash; 12% had no cash reserves left.

In this fundraising environment, it’s important to ensure that your organization is operating as efficiently as possible to keep costs low, and pursuing all appropriate sources of additional funding. For many grant-funded organizations, acquiring, managing, and reporting on grants is a time consuming and inefficient, yet vital, part of operations. Grantees face increased competition to win grants and are striving to provide additional financial accountability and success measures to grantors. read more

 

 

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Turning Data into Action:Business Intelligence for the Public Sector

Today’s softening economic market has created a ripple effect across all types of businesses that are keeping a closer eye on budgets and cash outflow. Due to funding uncertainties, many nonprofit organizations and government agencies have become more hesitant about expenditures. They are under growing pressure to do more with fewer resources, and provide more transparency and accountability to members, donors, and the people they serve. In addition to following increasingly complex accounting rules, they also have more competition for grants and contribution dollars.

To meet these challenges and work effectively, each department within an organization has systems in place to store information. Typically, key staff members in each department enter, manage, and report on this data. To help relieve these demands, many organizations are turning to Business Intelligence tools to retrieve, organize, and share knowledge for analysis and guided decision-making. read more

 

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Special Report:Weathering the Economy

Key findings:

  • Almost half (48%) of the surveyed respondents indicated that their organization’s income this year is below expectations. 43% indicated their organization’s income is meeting expectations and only 9% of organizations were ahead of expectations.
  • As a result of the economy, respondents said their top challenges were: decline in total revenue, decline in revenue from individual gifts, and increase in expenses.
  • Clearly, individual donations has had the greatest impact as a result of the economy, with 61% of respondents mentioning this source.
  • Over half (54%) of the respondents said they “Improved how we communicate impact to donors” as an action they have taken regarding increasing expenses.
  • 64% of respondents indicated they plan “additional personal asks with major donors” and 52% said they would “increase number of private grant applications” to increase funding.
  • Almost all (90%) of the surveyed organizations said they were not considering a merger/consolidation due to the economic conditions.
  • Two thirds of the organizations (66%) said their organization planned to diversify funding sources.
  • The donor management/CRM system was clearly the most important technology in helping organizations with their fund diversification.

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