With increasing expectations from stakeholders for more programs and services, non-profits are stretched to the limit trying to stay on top of their missions. According to the Non-profit Finance Fund 2018 State of the Non-profit Sector Survey, 57% of non-profits said they can’t keep up with stakeholder expectations. Non-profits are hindered by everything from funding constraints to lack of resources and technology to restrictive government regulations. Nevertheless, the need to become more agile and improve decision-making practices to advance your strategic plan is now more important than ever. In the past, non-profit leaders looked backwards at the budget data from the last month or last year to decide what the organization should do next. However, budget data in real-time can help non-profits make faster, better informed decisions to achieve the organization’s mission.
The BI-Survey from the Business Application Research Centre also reveals that 58% of surveyed organizations base at least half of their regular business decisions on gut instinct or experience rather than by data and information. Decisions based on intuition or feeling are increasingly being challenged by evidence that shows data-driven decisions pay off through cost savings and higher revenues. Non-profits have always collected budget data and other important financial information, but not taking the time to analyze the data to learn more about how programs and services are performing puts the success of their mandates at risk.
Real-time data can help your non-profit gain important insights which can help identify and fix problems faster, turning your organization’s hard work into results that have a lasting impact. The additional benefits of analyzing your budget data for decision making purposes include:
Budget data insights can reveal how programs and services are performing, so that resources are allocated to where they are needed most.
Better strategic planning
With forward-looking information, your non-profit leaders can focus on setting strategic goals and planning for the future.
More engaged staff
Budget data insights shared with staff can increase engagement and collaboration, and lead to the improvement and expansion of programs and services that serve your community.
Increase in transparency and accountability
Policies based on data demonstrates to stakeholders that trends or gut decisions are not driving the organization’s mission, but there is objective data behind your non-profit’s decisions.
Non-profits who use a budgeting software solution that can house all of your budget data in one place to create a single source of data truth will save time and provide you with the opportunity to gain these important data insights. Questica’s PowerPlan is an end-to-end budgeting solution designed for non-profits that can produce multi-year operating, salaries and capital budgets, and has the capability for analyzing, forecasting and reporting. Seamlessly integrating with ERP, payroll, financial and HR systems, PowerPlan can help your organization automate processes, provides level-based access to staff, and has a system of checks and balances to generate real-time, error-free budget data for quick decision making.
Advancing the strategic mandate of your non-profit cannot be achieved by gut instinct or looking backwards. To keep up with the increasing demand for programs and services, non-profit leaders need to make better data-driven decisions. Evidence shows organizations who nurture a data-driven culture enjoy cost savings, higher revenue, improved staff collaboration, and increased transparency and accountability with stakeholders. However, to find the time to analyze budget data and to discover important insights about your programs and services, consider using a powerful end-to-end budgeting solution like PowerPlan for accurate, real-time data. As a result, your non-profit can make faster, better informed decisions that drives the organization towards mission success.
For more information about how PowerPlan can help your non-profit make better data-driven decisions and advance your mission, visit questica.com/webinars.