To be certain technology partners support your mission, put them to the test with three foundational pieces every platform should include.
If anything has been made apparent this past year, it’s that communities have diverse and ever-changing needs. The success of nonprofit organizations is dependent upon an ability to evolve and reach people where they need help. Finding a like-minded technology partner committed to empowering communities will broaden this scope of impact. But new solutions are available every day. With so many options, how can nonprofit leaders be certain they have a partner to ensure a thriving future of changed lives?
From memberships to facility access, program management to generating and storing legal forms, all the way to creating stellar marketing campaigns to highlight new offerings and drive donations — innovative technology has become the lifeblood of thriving organizations. To be certain technology partners truly support the missions of nonprofits, put them to the test with three foundational pieces any innovative platform should include.
The best decisions are backed by reliable data. Luckily, organizations generate thousands of data points every day. What used to be a manual administrative task of tracking and surfacing this information can now happen automatically with the right technology. From tracking membership trends, to understanding program and class sign-ups, to detailed reports of donations, these numbers can be accessed in seconds with a technology partner who excels at data insights. Ensuring adequate data access and reliability is a vital step to further engage community. A quality technology partner should be able to track data and help make strategic decisions easier.
At the end of the day, technology partners exist to support mission-driven organizations. These software companies make impressive state-of-the-art products. But this is meaningless if no one knows how to use it. Even the most tech-savvy individual will need guidance to access important numbers and have a smooth day-to-day within the software. Unfortunately, many tech partners have hidden fees when support is needed. What may initially look like cost-saving up front can end up costing money, stress and resources down the road. Ultimately, these seemingly small hurdles add up to barriers that block a fully realized mission for any organization.
As communities change, so do their needs. The best partner should develop technology to adapt and meet these needs. To fill in gaps of technology that accomplish some goals but not others, many organizations use multiple platforms. This can mean one platform will manage memberships, while a separate software manages donations. But an increasing number of providers offer integrations that help fill these gaps. This ability for distinct facets of an organization to talk to one another helps streamline campaigns and boosts the long-term success of nonprofit organizations.
Confidence in software is a key component of a thriving organization. Putting these providers to the test will help answer the question, “Is this software designed for the needs of my organization?” Without an enthusiastic “yes” it’s probably worth digging deeper to find more tailored solutions.
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