Technology is Changing the Way Nonprofits Do Business

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Technology is changing the world around us – sometimes in subtle ways and sometimes in very dramatic ways. Consumer behavior is changing, companies are figuring out how to best use the latest technology to sell products and services and improve brand loyalty.

It’s no different for nonprofits. Technology is causing an ongoing transformation in the nonprofit sector from the way supporters engage with their favorite nonprofits to the way nonprofit organizations fund-raise, market and manage information. This will only continue to evolve.

Think back even five years ago, ten years ago – how different is the nonprofit landscape now compared to then? It’s pretty dramatic. Tremendous opportunities exist for nonprofit organizations to use technology to deliver on their missions in a very effective and scalable way. Some of the nonprofit technology trends that will have the biggest impact on the nonprofit sector are:

  1. Mobile
  2. Analytics
  3. Software
  4. Cloud
  5. Social Media

Mobile:  Mobile will continue to be an essential part of how nonprofits engage with supporters and expand the reach of their staff. More than 48 percent of emails are now read on mobile devices. This means having a mobile-friendly approach to engaging donors has never been more important. Mobile devices are quickly becoming the platform of choice for computing and collaboration versus sitting behind a desk, and will change how organizations leverage data and drive mission delivery


Analytics:  Data is the most valuable asset in any nonprofit organization. Consider how much additional web, social, and interaction data is now being gathered by charities. This ever increasing amount of data means nonprofits must shift from collecting to analyzing. Nonprofits will use this data to understand what communication channels are most effective, how to better fundraise (who to ask for how much), how to effectively facilitate events or peer-to-peer fundraise, how to increase recurring giving, etc. Understanding where other nonprofits are successful, how individuals respond to different communication (marketing) channels, and a supporter’s overall propensity and ability to give will be integrated into software to make it “smarter.” This will ultimately enable nonprofits to be much more successful.


Software:  Having the right software to track your budgets and grants and the importance of the underlying technology for nonprofits is essential. Deep knowledge of how nonprofits need to run their business and the mission critical processes they depend on will only better the organization. This will also accelerate a move away from on-premises installations of software to software-as-a-service/cloud-based implementations.


Cloud:  We’ve been talking about the cloud for a few years – and with good reason. Cloud provides a secure, highly available, managed, cheaper and less cumbersome environment for organizations. Nonprofits will continue to move to the cloud as they acknowledge that they are not in the IT infrastructure business. There will be less need to maintain applications and data in-house when it’s far more cost effective, accessible and a higher quality of service via the cloud. The move to the cloud becomes even more critical when we consider the pervasive nature of mobile devices. The two environments were made for each other to share vast amounts of data and information from any place, any time in a simple way. Ultimately, the cloud can serve as a game changer for many nonprofits, providing access to a multitude of services that were otherwise too costly even three years ago.


Social Media:  Social networks are the communication channel of choice for the emerging generations and will become more pervasive for business and personal use. Networks such as Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter provide access to networks of potential donors, volunteers, members, alumni, patrons, supporters, etc. Applications will more seamlessly integrate with social networks and enable peer-to-peer and direct communication with constituents. The benefits and options for leveraging this integration are limitless.


Bring your nonprofit up to date and become more successful with the right software solution. Contact DFC Consultants to learn more about how Microsoft Dynamics GP and Microsoft Dynamics CRM can help you save time and increase your bottom line.

by DFC Consultants

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