Structuring Staff for Online Success
"The reality for most nonprofits today is having to make do with less," he said. "[Getting] the maximum results from the resources you have requires having a plan and sticking to it."
Structure also affects performance, as it can drive the behavior of the individuals helping you with online.
SPCA of Wake County has an annual budget of $2.1 million, a staff of 39 employees — 30 of whom staff two animal shelters and nine of whom work in the organization's administrative office — and its main source of funding is individual donors. It has a hybrid staffing structure that grew organically. Lamb detailed the organization's experiences with restructuring and shared the following advice for other small nonprofits when it comes to online staffing:
- Look at the staff resources you already have.
- Don't let the multitude of tools available intimidate you.
- Leave room in your plan to be inspired.
Lamb outlined these steps organizations can take to better organize their staffs for online success:
- calculating average hours spent monthly on your online presence;
- identifying key gaps in skills that you will need to fill;
- determining which organizational structure you fall into: decentralized, centralized or hybrid;
- developing an online plan that includes goal setting and clearly defines ownership and accountability for each metric;
- knowing the "blind spots" of your existing structure and overcompensating in the typical areas of weakness;
- outlining professional development priorities and career path alternatives for your staff; and
- re-evaluating your online team's structure, and looking for ways to concentrate your online staff into more of a hybrid or centralized structure.
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