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Trust in god, all else bring data
Trust in god, all else bring data
Daniel Forrester, CEO
By Daniel Forrester, CEO
March 14, 2014
The nonprofit sector has seen an increased focus on data. Across boardrooms there is a constant theme being discussed – data.

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The nonprofit sector has seen an increased focus on data. Across boardrooms there is a constant theme being discussed – data.  Data is the light that illuminates the opportunities and hazards an organization faces. So who’s asking for data?

Internally

From leadership’s perspective never has there been a greater need for data to inform strategic decisions. Nonprofits must not only assess the efficacy of their solutions; they are constantly evaluating the market to ensure their portfolio of solutions is relevant to the needs of those they serve. Data is and will continue to be the enabler that guides strategy.

Data’s benefit go deeper and more tactically than a strategic plan. Nonprofits are finding ways to use data to help them stretch their dollars even further. From identifying new recipients to optimizing operations, nonprofits have realized efficiencies that rival and sometimes exceed commercial enterprises.

Externally

Grant makers and individual donors alike have also shifted focus from promises to results. Like an investor, they want to understand what their incremental dollar will help the nonprofit accomplish. It’s no longer about how much of a dollar goes to the cause (as flawed as that measure may have been). Instead donors want to understand the impact your organization realizes.

Additionally, partners have embraced collective impact in new and exciting ways. No longer is it about a joint initiative. The value of data gathered through a joint project can outweigh the direct benefits of said project.  This shift from a one-and-done approach to continuous learning is fueled by data.

So What? So while I wanted the donut the calorie count sold the yogurt parfait. Data is emerging on the critical path to success in the nonprofit sector. The following question emerges: “How will you seek to utilize the data you have and expand the data you can access so your organization is best positioned to live out its mission? Author Michael Moore