The U.S. and Canadian nonprofit sector is showing increasing interest in improving governance, planning and fundraising, and investing in training and equipment to enhance organizational performance, according to a study released by Blackbaud Inc. on October 21.
The foundation community has weighed in with capacity-building grants and requirements that grantees demonstrate the impact of their programs on target populations, Blackbaud said. As well, authors, educators and researchers have explored ways to draw on management techniques used by successful for-profits to help nonprofit organizations become more effective and more accountable to their constituents and the general public.
The North American findings are part of the 2010 State of the Nonprofit Industry Survey, Blackbaud’s annual global report covering general operations, fundraising, technology and Internet usage, and accountability and stewardship.
“Blackbaud has conducted the State of the Nonprofit Industry Survey for six years to provide an overview of trends that can help nonprofits assess their operations and compare their performance with other organizations,” Amy Comer, Blackbaud’s director of market research, said in a statement.
These were the survey’s key findings for North American nonprofit organizations:
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A majority of survey respondents from U.S. and Canadian nonprofits expect their organization’s total income, income from charitable giving and expenses to increase in 2010 and 2011. Most expect demand for the organization’s services to increase, but nearly half said their staffing levels will remain static.
Individual donations and special events are the sources of funding cited by the largest percentage of survey participants. Respondents said that maintaining relationships with supporters and retaining current donors were the most important business practices related to fundraising. They ranked retaining donors
and staff highest in terms of organizational performance. The largest gap between importance and performance appeared in the area of recruiting new donors. Nearly 60% of respondents expect to increase organizational investment in donor recruitment in the coming year.