7 Reasons Why Nonprofits Need to Invest in Technology Now
Nonprofits constantly look for ways to stay competitive in the market. One of the ways they do this is by investing in new technologies because the future for nonprofits is now. The only problem is that most organizations are slow to adapt to change. The result is that they miss out on the opportunities that technology brings. The good news is that there are many ways nonprofits can adopt new technologies and stay competitive. Let’s look at some of the benefits of incorporating technology into your nonprofit.
1. Build Reliable Systems
One of the benefits of incorporating technology into your organization is that it helps you to build reliable systems. In other words, you create a structural technology architecture that continually evolves, gets better and increases ROI for your organization. Getting left behind and not investing in solid technology is not an option if you want to remain competitive and attract supporters. So, the best way to avoid this is to integrate technologies into your systems.
2. Resolve Operational Issues
As your nonprofit grows and evolves, so will your nonprofit’s tech stack. Meaning you’ll encounter operational issues you haven't experienced in the past. It can be a little nerve-wracking, but it's also an opportunity to better your organization. One way to do it is by investing in technologies that can help with operational issues. For instance, you might want to look into using new software to help with your recruiting or exponentially increase your fundraising ROI. The key is to look for ways to make your operations run more smoothly. Integration into your CRM is important as they all need to work together. This way, you’ll have more time to focus on developing donor relationships.
3. Boost Employee Engagement
Nonprofit employees have busy schedules. It can make it challenging to find time to keep up with all tech trends. However, adopting quality tech stacks doesn’t have to be a stressful experience. The best way to make it fun and engaging is to incorporate it into a game-like learning environment. That means you can use new technologies to help your employees learn new skills. They can do it while having fun and building their skills simultaneously. What's more, your employees' IT literacy will help them feel more engaged with the work they do. As a result, it can help boost employee engagement and satisfaction levels in your business.
4. Improve Marketing
Marketing is one of the most critical factors in cultivating customer loyalty. If a donor isn't satisfied after supporting your organization, they will likely switch to a competitor nonprofit. To develop brand loyalty and keep your donors happy, it’s essential that you invest in marketing. For instance, you can use technologies to help with your marketing strategy that could include coordinating your CRM, social media marketing and operations. These platforms allow you to reach prospects and donors more effectively.
5. Evolve Data Analysis
Data analysis is an essential aspect of staying competitive in the nonprofit sector. To analyze data and identify trends, you need the power of data analytics. However, this is not always easy. Perhaps departments in your nonprofits have different software that doesn’t communicate or integrate easily. In addition, the software that you do have might not be able to handle the data requirements. In turn, that slows down data analysis efforts in your nonprofit. By investing in new technologies, you optimize your data analysis processes. It helps you identify issues and improve your organization before your competitors. It can also help you to identify growth opportunities and welcome new donors.
6. Better Customer Experience and Engagement
One of the benefits of technology in your nonprofit is that it can help you to improve donor experience and engagement levels. This is because it can help you automate processes previously done manually. By automating processes, you reduce the risk of human error. Your supporters will experience higher quality stewardship when they engage and donate to you. In addition, it can help you to retain existing donors. Automating daily tasks allows you to save time and increase employee efficiency. That means you’ll have more time to focus on the more rewarding aspects of your nonprofit.
7. Learn New Skills for the Future
Another benefit of incorporating new technologies into your organization is that it can help you to upskill your team. By offering mentorship and training programs, you can help your employees stay current with new technologies. In addition, it allows you to identify candidates with the right skill set that you need. This way, you can avoid wasting time hiring the wrong person. Upskill yourself and your team with the latest technologies, and you can help them stay relevant in the market.
The future is now for nonprofits when it comes to technology. Donors today expect to interact with agile organizations and adapt to the changing tech landscape. Unfortunately, not knowing how is no longer a viable approach. If you don't know how to integrate a cohesive tech stack into your organization, they hire a consultant. Sure, that requires an investment, but not doing it will be more expensive for your organization.
Paul D’Alessandro, J.D., CFRE, is a vice president at Innovest Portfolio Solutions. He is also the founder of High Impact Nonprofit Advisors (HNA), and D’Alessandro Inc. (DAI), which is a fundraising and strategic management consulting company. With more than 30 years of experience in the philanthropic sector, he’s the author of “The Future of Fundraising: How Philanthropy’s Future is Here with Donors Dictating the Terms.”
He has worked with hundreds of nonprofits to raise more than $1 billion dollars for his clients in the U.S. and abroad. In addition, as a nonprofit and business expert — who is also a practicing attorney — Paul has worked with high-level global philanthropists, vetting and negotiating their strategic gifts to charitable causes. Paul understands that today’s environment requires innovation and fresh thinking, which is why he launched HNA to train and coach leaders who want to make a difference in the world.