Selecting the Finest Nonprofit Efficiency Measures: 4 Ideas



Whether or not you’re seeking to safe extra funding, interact volunteers, or launch a brand new program or service, that you must know precisely how profitable your nonprofit is at attaining its objectives. Ineffective efficiency measures, nevertheless, can result in inaccurate insights and cloud your decision-making. 

For nonprofits, the perfect efficiency measures make it easier to and your stakeholders clearly perceive and assess your group impression. Comply with these 4 methods to pick out the best efficiency metrics on your group: 

  1. Select Measures That Align With Your Targets
  2. Select Measures That Think about Your Stakeholders
  3. Select Measures That Consider Your Affect
  4. Select Measures That Assist You Inform Your Story

By deciding on the best efficiency measures, it is possible for you to to strengthen your information assortment practices and pinpoint locations for development and growth in your nonprofit and group at-large. Let’s dive in!

1. Select Measures That Align With Your Targets

Earlier than you start selecting efficiency measures, you’ll wish to be clear in regards to the particular objectives of your nonprofit and its applications. In different phrases, ask your self, your workforce, and your group: What does success for our group seem like?

SureImpact’s information to nonprofit impression measurement notes that the solutions to this query will typically fall into the next classes:

  • To extend stakeholder information or readiness.
  • To alter stakeholder attitudes.
  • To scale back an undesirable conduct.
  • To extend a fascinating conduct.
  • To keep up a brand new conduct.
  • To enhance stakeholder social standing, financial situations, or well being.

Your objectives ought to be SMART (particular, measurable, attainable, related, and time-based) and immediately tackle your group’s bigger mission and strategic plan. After getting a transparent understanding of what your objectives are, you possibly can establish the efficiency measures and information factors that will probably be handiest in serving to you assess your progress.

2. Select Measures That Consider Your Affect

The perfect efficiency measures ought to make clear your group’s social impression. Thus, along with selecting measures that align together with your mission, you wish to choose people who truly make it easier to assess the long-term supposed (and unintended) penalties of your actions.

On this sense, impression might be measured by way of a mixture of the outputs, high quality, and outcomes of your actions. Thus, every of your efficiency measures ought to immediately reply a minimum of one of many following questions:

  1. Outputs: What was accomplished? What number of actions or companies have you ever supplied?
  2. High quality: How nicely was it accomplished? How nicely did you meet your beneficiaries’ expectations? What went nicely, and the place may you enhance?
  3. Outcomes: How are individuals impacted? What are the quick benefitsof your actions?

For instance, in case your nonprofit gives healthcare lessons to low-income people, you possibly can gather information that exhibits how many individuals your nonprofit has served previously 12 months, what number of accomplished your lessons, and the self-reported adjustments of their general wellness they’ve seen of their lives since. Over time, you possibly can examine these outcomes to earlier years alongside general well being information in your group for a holistic understanding of your impression.

Alternatively, whenever you repeatedly gather and analyze impact-related measures, you possibly can shortly establish challenges, setbacks, and adverse impacts of your actions, and take steps to deal with them.

3. Select Measures That Think about Your Stakeholders

Your stakeholders are the people or teams who’ve a vested curiosity in your group and its success. Due to this, your efficiency measures have to preserve every of your numerous stakeholders in thoughts. 

Your stakeholders probably embody:

  • Donors
  • Granting establishments
  • Volunteers
  • Workers
  • Beneficiaries

When figuring out efficiency measures with stakeholders in thoughts, ask your self:

  • What does every group of stakeholders wish to know?
  • What are you attempting to perform with every group of stakeholders?
  • How will this info entice new stakeholders to interact together with your group?

As an illustration: Are you attempting to retain mid-level donors? Are you seeking to attain beneficiaries in a brand new group? Are you auditing a long-standing program on your board?

Whereas some basic measures will tackle your entire stakeholders, such because the variety of constituents served or the speed of constituents demonstrating a brand new conduct or ability, additionally think about the measures distinctive to every group. 

4. Select Measures That Assist You Inform Your Story

Your efficiency measures will type the core of any partaking impression story you share together with your group of stakeholders. Your impression story will assist present your stakeholders how you might be remodeling folks’s lives, why they need to give you their help, and the way they will become involved.

Think about what quantitative and qualitative information factors that you must paint a compelling image of constructive change. Each measure you collect on your impression story ought to be included in your advertising and marketing collateral to assist preserve your mission and outcomes high of thoughts on your supporters.

Along with laborious information, NXUnite’s information to nonprofit advertising and marketing suggests gathering and incorporating anecdotal tales from supporters about their experiences together with your group into your impression story. Testimonies will help display how your companies are actually altering their lives in ways in which information factors alone merely can’t.

As you’re deciding in your efficiency measures, be certain that they are often precisely measured with quantitative and qualitative metrics. For finest outcomes, for every measure, plan to gather information from a number of sources, together with:

  • Your workers and volunteers
  • Your beneficiaries
  • Your nonprofit’s inside techniques
  • Your companions and funders

When you’ve carried out your efficiency measures, preserve an in depth eye on the information you gather. While you see a change in efficiency, ask your self: Have you ever modified one thing in your actions that’s had an impact? Do your unique efficiency measures nonetheless suit your objectives, viewers, and actions? If not, it’s probably time to revise your measures to remain in sync together with your organizational and programmatic adjustments.

Concerning the Writer

Sheri Chaney Jones, President & CEO of SureImpact

For greater than 20 years, Sheri Chaney Jones has utilized efficiency administration, analysis, and group conduct finest practices to non-profit organizations and authorities businesses to enhance outcomes and efficiencies. An writer, professor, and internationally acknowledged knowledgeable, Sheri believes in information, metrics, and accountability.

Sheri’s foray into entrepreneurship started with Measurement Sources Firm in 2010. Now a nationwide agency, Measurement Sources will increase the capability of non-profit and authorities sector organizations by way of high-performance practices and data-driven insights. In 2018, Sheri launched SureImpact to automate and simplify the method of gathering and sharing outcomes and impression information. 

Sheri is a thought chief on public sector analysis and utilized organizational analysis. She is the writer of Affect & Excellence: Knowledge-Pushed Methods for Aligning Mission, Tradition, and Efficiency in Nonprofit and Authorities Organizations (Jossey Bass, 2014). 

Sheri is keen about girls’s fairness and the development of ladies. She is the Columbus Chapter President of the Nationwide Affiliation of Ladies Enterprise House owners and a Commissioner for the Columbus Ladies’s Fee for the Mayor’s Workplace. 



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