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Innovative Solutions for Streamlining Nonprofit Finance
By using fundraising software, data management tools, and AI — Nonprofits can increase their efficiency, expand their reach, and stabilize their finances. You don’t need to have a dedicated IT department or a tech guru on your staff to digitize your workflows and neither do you need a huge budget. Furthermore investing in digitized systems can lower operational costs and increase donations, so the investment can ultimately pay for itself.
Areas in Which You Can Digitize Your Nonprofit
Do you need more social engagement with potential donors and volunteers? Is there a disconnect between remote team members? Are nonprofit finances monopolizing your time? How you choose to integrate technology will depend on what specific areas your organization needs it the most. With that being said, many nonprofits find that managing their finances is an especially challenging task.
Between managing employees, rallying volunteers, creating programs, and connecting with people who need their services, nonprofits rarely have time to give their financial management the attention it needs. Whether you know close to nothing about nonprofit finances or have a wealth of knowledge on the topic, financial management technology, and fundraising software are vital tools. They allow you to focus on what’s most important – expanding your organization’s reach and helping those in need.
Software as a Service (SaaS)
SaaS stands for Software-as-a-service. Examples of well-known SaaS products are Slack, Zoom, Donorbox, and Salesforce. These products are built on a subscription model.
Technology for nonprofits can improve your data collection and allow you to make more informed analyses and reporting. Certain software can help you better manage cash flow and allocate resources. Strategic planning, regulatory compliance, and fundraising can also benefit from targeted integration of technology.
Access to grant funds is becoming increasingly competitive, so proving your organization’s effectiveness and presenting your service outcomes in a clear, convincing way is crucial. Using tech tools can make applying for grants simpler and receiving grants more likely. Further, donors want to know that their money is making a difference. Data-collection tech is an easy way to show the impact of an organization’s programs, which nonprofits are using to increase donations.
Even something as small as using accounting software tailored to nonprofits can make a significant difference in how your organization operates and the effectiveness of its systems. These programs help streamline nonprofit finances, and some even offer assistance with filing Form 990s at tax time.
The rise of AI in the past year can benefit nonprofits too. Nonprofit treasurers can ask an AI chatbot for help with annual budget creation, help explaining complicated financial concepts, or with just about anything! These chatbots are available mostly free of cost, and can assist any member of a nonprofit board with their daily tasks.
Nonprofit Bank Accounts
Another area in which nonprofits can benefit from services targeted to their unique needs is banking. Business bank accounts and basic checking accounts are unlikely to fit the bill. Managing your various costs – operational, administrative, and program expenses – is cumbersome without the proper tools and systems. Choosing the right nonprofit bank account can also help you in other areas of operation, such as fundraising.
How can a tailored, technology-driven nonprofit bank account help your nonprofit thrive? You’re likely to find it easier to manage and monitor your donations and expenses, process additional forms of payment, pay employees, and file your tax returns. As a nonprofit organization, your banking needs differ from those of an individual or a for-profit business. Banking with an institution that is familiar with your specific concerns and needs is important for the success of your mission.
Crowded Bank Accounts
Crowded offers bank accounts tailored specifically for nonprofits, which means its accounts and services were created with organizations like yours in mind. Crowded has no monthly fee, or minimum balance requirements, and unlimited free transactions. Plus, you can set up and manage your account completely digitally.
Crowded understands how nonprofits function and what financial services they need to run smoothly. Collecting payments, controlling member spending, and establishing passive fundraising programs are all simpler with Crowded.
Innovative Ways to Fundraise (Strategies and Fundraising Software)
Having a customized place to put your donations and funds is helpful, but how can you raise money for your nonprofit and use technology to increase charitable giving?
Finding new and more effective ways to raise money for your nonprofit is the only way to continue operating and making an impact. Technology offers a tremendous opportunity to diversify your fundraising efforts, from fundraising software to donor communication systems. Learn more about fundraising software by checking out our blog post on fundraising technology.
Your organization can receive free donations from shop-to-give programs, which allow shoppers to allocate a portion of their purchase each time they buy something at participating stores. You can make receiving funds from this method even simpler if you bank with Crowded because of their Crowded Rewards.
Crowded’s shop-to-give program is a cashback fundraising tool that generates money for your nonprofit at no additional cost to your donors or to you. It takes minutes to set up, is endlessly scalable, and offers cashback on purchases at over 70K+ retailers. Your organization will receive 50% of the cashback earned by donors, and because supporters will still receive a portion of their cashback, this further incentivizes them to participate.
You can utilize peer-to-peer (P2P) fundraising to increase your donations through existing donor networks. Your current donors can create fundraising pages that broadcast your nonprofit’s mission and message to people in their social circles. This is an effective virtual strategy, and it presents a nearly passive method for connecting with new donors and increasing charitable giving.
Peer-to-peer fundraising operates on a large scale to raise awareness of your mission and expand access to donation sources. It also offers the added benefit of increasing volunteer and supporter engagement.
Fundraising events have long been a popular way to raise money for good causes, and with the help of fundraising software and data management tools, these events can be held virtually. Hosting virtual events means donors from any part of the world can attend, supporters with mobility or transportation challenges can participate, and your events won’t be limited by the physical space you have available. Your organization can get creative when planning virtual events and broadcasting live to supporters. Consider streaming a play, concert, ballet, or other live performance. You could organize an online auction, virtual black-tie gala, or trivia night.
Giving through a nonprofit’s website is a popular cash flow source for nonprofits. If your website does not provide this option already, this is something you will want to implement as soon as you can. When visitors to your website browse your mission, about, and programs pages, they will feel inspired to help. That’s the goal, anyway. Don’t make it more difficult by leaving out an online giving page. Facilitate charitable giving by creating an online form where your donors can securely make donations right from your website.
Technology and Your Nonprofit
How you use technology to improve your nonprofit overall, and its finances is dependent on your needs, goals, budget, and capabilities, but don’t feel limited by these parameters. There is technology for every organization that can make a difference in day-to-day operations, strategic planning, program implementation, or financial management.
Create a wishlist of technologies that you want to implement in your nonprofit organization. Figure out what would you need and what’s in your way before adopting that new technology. Recruit the right people from within your organization who can help you achieve those goals! Remember, ultimately technology is meant to make your job easier!
This article is courtesy of Crowded.
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