June is the last month of the fiscal year for many nonprofits, when supposedly the deep questions are being asked. Are we on the right track, programmatically and financially? Do we have enough Facebook ‘Likes’?

Bloomerang recently surveyed 600 North American nonprofits to gauge their sustainability. Some questions dealt with management practices; some with board and volunteer commitment; some with strategic and financial planning.

Interestingly, none of the questions dealt with actual fundraising performance; instead, Bloomerang relied on some indicators that might suggest fundraising smarts.

Here’s an infographic summarising their findings.

For Agitator readers charged with fundraising, note that only 35% of surveyed organizations utilized a marketing plan in the last quarter; a bit better, 62% utilized a fundraising plan in the last quarter.

I wonder what was going on in the other 38%?! I’d like to think they were too busy measuring donor lifetime values … Uh Huh!

And only 28% communicated about planned giving opportunities. That’s a real disappointment and major missed opportunity.

The takeaways as Bloomerang assessed the findings:

  • goal setters: most organizations have organizational priorities and challenges defined
  • know your role: most organizations have written job descriptions in place
  • not-so-future-proof: few organizations have a succession plan in place
  • what gets measured gets improved: almost half of those who measured impact saw that impact increase
  • pitching in: almost half of organizations reported at least 101 total hours volunteered last quarter
  • room for improvement: board giving is present in more than half of organizations, but just over a third reported healthy staff giving.

How does your organization stack up? Will you make it through another year? In which of these areas do you need improvement?


This article was posted in: Board Meeting Swipe File, Nonprofit management.
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