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A nonprofit manages information with regard for confidentiality/openness, safety, accuracy, integrity, reliability, cost-effectiveness, and legal compliance. A nonprofit should invest in appropriate technology to enhance capacity and improve its efficiency, efficacy, and accuracy in the achievement of its mission. A nonprofit should also ensure the security of sensitive or confidential information, and ensure its document retention and destruction policy adequately protects information.
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An article highlighting key google analytics statistics to track in order to assess website performance.
This guide provides an overview and comparison of five widely-used case management systems, sometimes called client management systems.
This article reviews why it is important for an organization to have a policy outlining acceptable usage of its networks and technology resources, and includes a suggested lists of topics that should be covered.
The following reference documents are helpful when determining what accounting software is right for your organization.
Sumac Nonprofit Software
Make sure your organization's messages are getting seen by following these best practices for email marketing.
Tools and strategies for protecting your organization against data loss.
This guide provides a great overview of reasons boards consider portals and other online collaboration tools, as well as a summary of pros, cons and costs of various file sharing tools (such as dropbox and and google drive), project management tools (such as Basecamp or Central Desktop), and dedicated board portals (such as BoardPaq) that organizations may consider.
An essential part of choosing the right software is trying out the product, usually in a demonstration by the vendor. This article outlines helpful tips for getting what you need out of these vendor demos so you can choose the right CRM, CMS, fundraising database or other software.
It is increasingly common for organizations to be moving files and applications to "the cloud." These resources help outline what the “the cloud” is and what should nonprofits consider before migrating.
A CMS is a software package that lets you build a website that can be quickly and easily updated by your non-technical staff members. These reports look at popular available Content Management Systems to help nonprofits looking to replace an existing Content Management System, or implement one for the first time, in making an informed choice.
#netcitizens, Monitor Institute, John S. and James L. Knight Foundation
This essay highlights groups that are creatively connecting citizens who are making a difference , explores how technology might impact public participation and leadership in the future, and considers the role philanthropy can play in harnessing network-centric practices.
Most nonprofits maintain relationships with a wide range of people, and being able to track and manage information about those relationships is critical to your success.
- Types of Databases for Managing Constituents (Idealware)
- Select The Right CRM For Your Nonprofit (TechImpact)
- 10 Things To Consider in a CRM (Idealware)
- A Few Good Constituent Relationship Management Tools (Idealware)
- Will All Your Constituents Fit Into One System? An Idealware Workbook (Idealware)
- A Nonprofit's Guide to Data Migration (Idealware)
- Field Guide to Software for Nonprofits (Idealware)
- A Guide to the Top CRM and Donor Management Systems (TechSoup)
- Nonprofits Are About People: The “R” in CRM (Idealware)
Is your organization doing enough to secure its most important data? These guides will help you determine whether you are taking adequate steps to manage the risks of cyber attack, including preparation checklists and practice exercises!
- Know Your CyberSpeak: A Cyber Risk Glossary (Nonprofit Risk Management Center)
- Cybersecurity for Nonprofits: A Guide (NTEN)
- What Nonprofits Need to Know About Security: A Practical Guide to Managing Risk (Idealware)
- Feeling Insecure About Security? Protecting Your Nonprofit’s Data Is Not Rocket Science (National Council of Nonprofits)
- Free Information Security Toolkit (Idealware)
- Assessing Risk: How to Protect Your Most Valuable Data (NTEN)
- 7 Deadly Weaknesses of Nonprofit Security, and How to Address Them (NTEN)
- Five Cybersecurity Best Practices to Follow (Systems Engineering)
- Pro Bono Tech Assessment (includes cybersecurity assessment – members only!)
- What Your Board Needs to Know About Cyber Threats (Nonprofit Risk Management Center)
- Prepare for Cyberattacks: TableTop Exercise Workbook (RoundTable Technology)
- Demystifying Cyber Liability Insurance (Nonprofit Risk Management Center)
The following articles and guides can help nonprofits prepare for emergency situations and disruptions in service by developing business continuity plans and practices.
- Is Your Nonprofit Disaster Ready? (LaPiana Consulting Group)
- Disaster Planning, Emergency Preparedness & Business Continuity (Nonprofit Coordinating Committee of New York)
- Disaster Planning and Recovery for Nonprofits, Charities, and Libraries (TechSoup)
- Crisis Management Essentials (Nonprofit Risk Management Center)
- The Future is Now: Preparing for the Unknown Crisis (Nonprofit Risk Management Center)
- Business Continuity Plan Template (Risk Alternatives)
- Business Impact Analysis Worksheet (Nonprofit Risk Management Center)
- Organizations Preparing for Emergency Needs (OPEN) Preparedness Training for Community-Based Organizations (FEMA)
The following samples can help your organization craft its own document retention and destruction policy. They are not intended to be used strictly verbatim without careful review.
These articles will help you assess the donor management software options available to you, and navigate discounted options through TechSoup.
Some simple suggestions for anyone embarking on planning and managing a project for the first time.
NTEN, M+R Strategic Services
An annually produced analysis of online messaging, fundraising, advocacy, social media and mobile metrics for nonprofit organizations.
The following resources will help you find and manage consultants and vendors, whether for a defined project, or ongoing support. If you need a referral for support on fundraising, strategic planning, legal issues, accounting issues, meeting facilitation, technology, or any other outside support, start here. (Many of the consultants and vendors in the MANP Business Finder offer nonprofit rates.)
- Browse the MANP Business Finder
- How to Find, Hire and Collaborate with Technology Consultants (Idealware)
- Working with Professional Fundraising Consultants and Grantmakers (National Council of Nonprofits)
- How to work effectively with an outside consultant (Candid)
- So You Want to Hire an Equity Consultant
Even relatively small grants programs can involve tracking dozens of applications, reviewers, requirements, and payments. Grants management software can save grantmakers time, making their processes more effective and transparent and transforming the way they do business. How do you choose the right system for your needs? This report is a good place to start—reviewing 29 different systems and comparing them against nearly 200 requirements criteria. First published in 2008 and updated in 2-16 with new systems and criteria to better help you find the right solution to your grantmaking needs.
This article outlines potential problems related to technology that can arise during a staff transition, as well as steps your nonprofit can take to handle transitions well while maintaining system and data integrity and access. Plus, a worksheet to help your nonprofit keep track of your technology.
A nonprofit themselves, Idealware provides thoroughly researched, impartial and accessible resources about software to help nonprofits make smart software decisions.
Alliance for Justice
This publication addresses the many questions nonprofit organizations have about advocacy in the new environment of digital communication. This document provides guidance on how nonprofit advocates can stay within the law and also use new technology to enhance their participation in the democractic process.
The following resources provide suggestions on starting a major donor program, asking for major gifts, and stewarding relationships with major donors.
- Staring a Major Gifts Program (NonprofitQuarterly)
- How to Keep Major Donors (Chronicle of Philanthropy)
- The Wired Wealthy Using the Internet to Connect with Your Middle and Major Donors (Convio, Sea Change Strategies and Edge Research)
- How can you disrupt power dynamics and bring a DEI lens to your major donor relationships? (Big Duck)
At MANP, we often get questions from our members about "who else uses XYZ software" so we're conducting a pilot software mapping project to help us better connect members to one another for peer learning and peer reviews. The survey asks nonprofits to share what they use for constituent/stakeholder management (CRMs), fundraising databases, accounting systems, grants management, board portals, etc. Use the links below to request connections and/or to add your organization's data to our map!
In an increasingly mobile world, nonprofits need to put in place policies that consider both flexibility for employees, and data security. The following resources will help your organization address the use of mobile devices.
Resources and information on good practices in all areas of nonprofit management, including a section on volunteerism.
Good technology policies protect your organization’s data and reputation by providing clear guidance on what’s acceptable and how to manage risky situations. By documenting your policies, sharing them widely, training users to understand them, and enforcing them consistently, your nonprofit can significantly reduce the risks and ensure that everyone is clear on what’s expected. This workbook will walk you through a process to develop policies that make sense for your organization, such as acceptable use of technology and networks, personal devices for work, how to respond to an IT incident, and how to recover your technology after a major disaster.
Nonprofit technology support organization with locations across the country. Online resources include: articles, links, tools, planning assistance, and technical assistance.
What tools can help you collect donations via credit card through your existing website? This article breaks down the options, what features are available, and a set of software tools that might work well for you.
- Data Privacy and Compliance at Nonprofit Organizations (TechSoup)
- Example: National Council of Nonprofits
- Example: NTEN
Many organizations use Quickbooks for their accounting. These free recorded webinars can help you make the most of the software.
These articles and guides provide an overview of the key terms and strategies involved in Search Engine Optimization (SEO), and tips for how to make sure your website content shows up in search results.
An interesting article outlining the skills a leader needs to manage technology planning, and how they are comparable to the way other types of projects are managed. The article also includes aspects to consider and pitfalls to avoid when doing technology planning.
Tool to help nonprofits grapple with technology. Score yourself and find out how you can better use technology to achieve your mission.
Guide/Tool, Sample/Template, Video/Tutorial
There are a lot of great resources to help with technology planning, including sample technology plans, free recorded webinars, software checklists and more.
- Tech Soup Canada's Technology Planning Resources
- Tips & Tools for Technology Planning
- From MAP TechWorks: Sample Budget, Inventory & Action Plan
- From SCORE: Free Online Workshop - Tech Made Simple: Creating a Technology Plan for Your Small Business
- From Nonprofit Quarterly: Are You Navigating Without a Map?
- From NTEN: Making Smarter Decisions When Selecting Technology
- From Cloud for Good: Implementation Best Practices e-Book
Excellent technology support organization providing topic-specific articles, product and hardware donations, free software downloads, services directory, forums, a free e-newsletter (TechSoup By the Cup) and more.
Many nonprofits have limited or no IT staff. The Community Corps matches pro bono resources with nonprofits in need of support related to technology.
MAP for Nonprofits, Idealware
This report features common characteristics and illustrative case studies of nonprofits using technology successfully.
Tech Soup has created a handy, at-a-glance guide to help you make a more informed decision about what videoconferencing tool may be right for your nonprofit.
Virtual events are becoming increasingly common, whether as a safety measure during the COVID-19 pandemic, or just as a way to bring people together across geographic distance. The following resources provide advice for effective virtual events.
- 5 Ways to Make Your Virtual Event More Accessible (Associations Now)
- Make the Move! Tips for Migrating Your In-Person Event Online (Blue Avocado)
- The Show Must Go On: Producing a Virtual Nonprofit Event (TechSoup)
- Ensuring Virtual Events Are Accessible for All (Respectability)
- Facilitating great meetings online (Big Duck)
- Recorded Webinar: How to Bring Your Live or In-Person Events Online (TechSoup)
- How to Make Your Virtual Meetings and Events Accessible to the Disability Community (Rooted in Rights)
The following resources will help you learn about how you can make your website friendlier to all users, including those who are differently abled.
Creating or redesigning a website is a major project worthy of thorough planning. These guides will help you understand your audience and their needs, identify what your organization is trying to communicate, and evaluate how well your current site meets these goals. If you decide that a new website is the right next step, these resources provide a framework for the process, from vendor selection through design, development, testing and launch.
Use this guide to assess your technical needs, identify areas where volunteers can help, recruit technical volunteers and assess their skills, manage technical volunteers, document their work, and find resources that will help your volunteers throughout the process.
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