This chapter provides an overview of the nonprofit organization in the United States, the main characteristics of nonprofit organizations, and the reality of the nonprofit sector today. It describes the differences between a nonprofit and a for-profit corporation. Nonprofit organizations have existed for many centuries, especially through religious groups or religious-based activities. The nongovernmental sector is growing throughout the world. Increasingly, these organizations are playing key roles in the economic and social contexts of their countries. Unlike private-sector organizations concerned primarily with making a profit, nonprofit organizations are focused on carrying out a specific public-service mission. Successful nonprofit organizations require substantial capability in key areas of management: developing strong boards of directors, recruiting and motivating talented staff and volunteers, creating plans to focus resources on relevant goals and innovative programs, winning the support of diverse stakeholders, raising funds, and wisely managing fiscal and human resources.
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This chapter discusses the term “service delivery” and describes a service delivery system in the context of a nonprofit organization. Servitization is the process whereby an organization develops creative and innovative ways to create a product-service system that integrates value-based products and service offerings. The chapter discusses the roles of client-centeredness, decision making, scheduling, priority setting, effective and efficient flow of services or activities, quality assurance, and continuing quality improvement, and how these factors contribute in their own context to influence positively or negatively the financial sustainability of a nonprofit organization. A customer-centric service design is a service delivery system that focuses on providing the best quality service possible to customers or clients or the service target, based on a service concept, a service decision path, service sustainability, and service quality. The chapter explains the relationship between service delivery and financial sustainability.
This chapter defines the term “grant” and examines potential funding sources for nonprofit organizations. A grant is a monetary fund disbursed by an institutional or organizational donor to a recipient, which does not have to be paid back. The chapter discusses the overall grant-seeking process and describes the items of a generic grant proposal or application. A grant proposal is a written document or application submitted in response to a call for proposals issued by a grant-maker agency or as a result of opportunities for funding or an invitation received by an applicant. A generic grant proposal includes: cover letter, cover page, table of content, abstract, problem or needs statement, goals and objectives, project description, timeline, organizational capability, evaluation, references, budget, and appendices. The chapter focuses on how grant seeking can serve as a strategy to generate revenues that may ultimately contribute to financial sustainability of a nonprofit organization (NPO).
This chapter defines the term “budget” and explains the importance of the budget for a nonprofit organization. It describes the different types of budgets and provides the most common budget approaches. The most common types of budgets are an operating budget, a cash budget, and a capital budget. The chapter also describes the process of developing a budget in a nonprofit organization and presents the relationship between the budget and financial sustainability in nonprofit organizations. Budget techniques are central to the successful operation of all organizations. A budget enables organizations to allocate scarce resources, control operations, and manage performance. A budget is the translation of an organization’s plans and priorities. The chapter helps the readers to learn the basic concepts and practices of budgeting in nonprofit organizations. It also explains the essential role played by budget approaches and techniques in the successful and sustainable operations of a nonprofit organization.
This chapter explains the purpose and benefits of information systems for nonprofit organizations. Information technology refers to the means of access to information and related services that combine various support and devices, such as telephone, computer, software, and the Internet. Information technology includes all computer-based information systems and related technology used by organizations in the operation of their programs, activities, or services. The chapter discusses the dimensions of information systems and also discusses the most common types of information systems in organizations. Some organizations develop and maintain: executive information systems, management information systems (MIS), and transaction processing systems. Effective information system must meet at least five criteria such as accuracy, completeness, consistency, relevance, and timeliness. The chapter presents the relationship between information technology and the financial sustainability of nonprofit organizations.
This chapter defines the concept of leadership and describes the most common leadership theories. Most scholars agree that leadership is a key component of organizational effectiveness. The very range of definitions of leadership and the absence of consensual agreement between the definitions make the concept of leadership an issue in itself. The chapter examines leadership from various perspectives with an emphasis on the influence of particular leadership styles on the financial sustainability of a nonprofit organization. It integrates theory-based and practice-based approaches, and thus provides tools to better understand and influence the leader-follower dynamic in the nonprofit setting. Early leadership theories include: Great man theory, traits theories, behavioral theories, contingency theories, and attribution and charismatic theories. The chapter explains the relationship between leadership and community relations and discusses the role of leadership in strategic planning. It also explains the relationship between leadership and financial sustainability of nonprofit organizations.
This chapter defines the terms community relations, outreach, and partnership in relationship to nonprofit organizations. Community relations combine an organization policy and process used to develop and implement community outreach and awareness about programs and activities in order to promote the organizational vision and mission in a community-oriented manner. As a policy, community-relations programs and activities are intentional. The chapter also defines the terms advocacy and public relations. Public relations involve the communication of intentional messages to the public in order to influence the opinion or perception of an organization by the public at large. Public relations are a key communication practice for organizations, including nonprofit organizations. The chapter describes the different facets of community relations and discusses community outreach, partnership, advocacy, and public relations as facets of community relations. It explains the relationship between community relations and financial sustainability.
This chapter describes a financial sustainability plan and explains the importance of a financial sustainability plan for nonprofit organizations. It discusses the elements of a financial sustainability plan. A financial sustainability plan should include an executive summary, financial sustainability analysis, financial ratios analysis, strategic goals and objectives, action plan, benchmark and outcomes, continuing quality improvement strategies, and budget. Many nonprofit organizations are faced with a constant challenge to match financial sustainability with their vision and mission statements. Some of the challenge may have to do with how much money they can successfully raise. This aspect can be manipulated by greater fund-raising efficiency and effectiveness. The chapter suggests approaches and best practices in developing a financial sustainability plan for a nonprofit organization. It includes a step-by-step process to use to develop a financial sustainability plan.
The term “fund-raising” can be used for any activity whose primary purpose is to raise money to support the activity of a nonprofit organization. The meaning of the term “fund-raising” can change based on approaches used by a particular nonprofit organization. This chapter discusses why people donate to nonprofit organizations. The literature suggests that people donate to nonprofit organizations based on compassion, altruism, values, tax deductibility, corporate social responsibility, stewardship, and solicitation. The chapter identifies some common effective fund-raising strategies used by nonprofit organizations in the United States and describes the items in a fund-raising proposal. An effective fund-raising proposal requires effective planning. The planning of fund-raising activities should start with a fund-raising proposal that sets clear justification, goals, objectives, and overall approaches and strategies. Finally, the chapter provides conceptual frameworks and approaches to organize fund-raising activities that can generate alternative funding for financial sustainability.
This chapter introduces the concept of financial sustainability in relation to the use of financial statements. It also introduces selected financial ratios to assess the profitability, liquidity, solvency, efficiency, and effectiveness of a nonprofit organization. Profitability is the surplus of revenue over expenses. Profitability used to be a forbidden word in the nonprofit world. Many nonprofit organizations are faced with the challenge of undercapitalization and do not have enough cash or liquidity to pay their regular bills. The liquidity of an organization can be measured by the current ratio, the net working capital, and the acid test or quick ratio or liquidity ratio. Solvency is different from liquidity because it deals with the long-term ability of an organization to continue to exist and expand. The debt ratio and the debt-to-equity ratio are two common measures of organizational solvency.
This chapter discusses the legal and organizational roles of the board of directors and special committees in the governance and financial sustainability of a nonprofit organization. It describes the differences between governance and government, and identifies some common governance theories. Corporate governance is often analyzed around major theoretical frameworks. The most common are agency theories, stewardship theories, resource-dependence theories, and stakeholder theories. The chapter highlights the key governance structures and perspectives in nonprofit organizations and lists some key principles of nonprofit governance. Governance models or approaches are considered in an eclectic perspective that combines empirical observations and literature related to nonprofit and for-profit organizations as micro societies. Eclectic perspective considers nonprofit board governance through functionalism, structuralism, structuro-functionalism, and symbolic perspectives. The chapter explores conceptual and theoretical frameworks that explain governance in nonprofit organizations in the context of financial sustainability.
This chapter defines the concept of risk and discusses the mechanics of risk management. A risk is the potential for negative, unwanted, or unpredictable consequences from an event, an activity, or a decision. Risk management involves making and carrying out decisions for the organization that will minimize the effects of risk. The chapter identifies the common areas of risk for nonprofit organizations and presents various types of risks related to management of a nonprofit organization. It introduces the theories and practices of integrated risk management in relation to its contributions to the financial sustainability of a nonprofit organization. The chapter describes the nature and contents of a risk-management policy. Risk-management options refer to the decisions of an organization to take action or purchase insurance for the purpose of: Risk avoidance, risk reduction, risk retention, risk sharing, and risk transference. The chapter explains the relationship between risk management and financial sustainability.
This chapter explores the dimensions of financial sustainability as well as the principles needed to manage a nonprofit organization that can generate continuous funding through diverse sources in order to support its vision and mission in a way that is socially and environmentally sustainable. Sustainability is the ability of a business, an organization, or a project to fulfill its vision and mission, meet its goals, and serve its stakeholders over time. The chapter discusses the inherent, collateral, and environmental factors of financial sustainability in nonprofit organizations. Inherent factors of financial sustainability include: Financial management, budget, financial statement analysis, financial sustainability plan, social enterprise, fund-raising, grant seeking, investment, and risk management. Collateral factors of financial sustainability include: Governance, leadership, and strategic planning. The chapter describes key indicators that can reveal whether an organization is financially sustainable or is on the path for financial sustainability.
This chapter explains the concept of needs assessment and the relationship between the individual and the community. It identifies the different steps involved in conducting a needs assessment and shows how needs assessment can contribute to the financial sustainability of a nonprofit organization. The chapter emphasizes how financial sustainability is rooted in the investigation and analysis of the needs of a target community. It discusses the theories about the needs-assessment process, as well as action steps toward the development of a community needs-assessment report. The chapter explores facets of financial needs-assessment of a nonprofit that can help chart a course to further the vision and mission statements. It helps the readers to learn how to use primary and secondary data to conduct a targeted needs assessment that is linked to the financial sustainability of a nonprofit organization.
This book provides leaders and managers of nonprofit organizations with theoretical and conceptual frameworks, approaches, and strategies that will enable them to manage organizations that are financially sustainable. The book aims to equip students and nonprofit leaders with the information and conceptual frameworks needed to do financial analyses, manage budgets, and conduct various operations for organizational and financial sustainability. People have a tendency to think of financial sustainability almost exclusively in financial terms. The book argues that financial sustainability involves both financial and nonfinancial facets. To that end it provides a systemic conceptual framework. The chapters are articulated around four sections. The first part introduces the concepts of nonprofit organizations and financial sustainability. The second part is about key aspects of organization and planning for sustainability in a nonprofit organization. The third part discusses issues that are vital to the financial sustainability of a nonprofit organization. The last part emphasizes the contributions of management and leadership practices to the financial sustainability of nonprofit organizations. The book may serve as an introductory textbook for future leaders of nonprofit organizations, as well as students in schools or programs of nonprofit leadership, human service leadership, social work, public and community health, organization management, public administration, education, and other similar fields.
This chapter defines the concept of financial management and establishes the relationship between financial management and nonprofit financial managers. A nonprofit perspective on financial management includes financial planning, financial monitoring, financial decisions, and financial accountability in order to ensure that an organization can sustain its financial resources to fulfill its vision and mission through the achievement of organizational goals and objectives. The chapter discusses the various facets of nonprofit corporate finance and accounting and lists the most common funding sources of nonprofit organizations. It examines the financial and accounting principles and procedures related to the management of a nonprofit organization. The chapter addresses basic accounting principles that leaders of a nonprofit organization should be aware of, and the conditions surrounding the financial situation of a nonprofit organization. It describes a financial management system and explains the relationship between financial management and the financial sustainability of nonprofit organizations.
This chapter describes the concept of investment and the items in an investment policy statement. Investment is the purchase of a financial or real asset by an individual, an organization, or an institution, in order to generate a return over time, which is proportional to the risk assumed during the investment period. The chapter identifies the different types of investments available for nonprofit organizations. The most common types of investments are short-term investment vehicles and fixed-income securities. Contrary to short-term investments, long-term investments are made with funds that are not needed for use in a period of less than a year. Examples of long-term investments are pension funds, self-insurance funds, and endowment funds. The chapter explains the extent to which investments can contribute to financial sustainability of nonprofit organizations. It summarizes the key principles for investment management and examines the management structures involved in investment for nonprofit organizations.
This chapter defines the concept of program evaluation and also defines the term ‘logic model’. A program evaluation design is a document outlining principles and procedures to assess the achievement of a program’s goals. The logic model is one of the most common program design frameworks used in program evaluation. Program evaluation can be a needs assessment, a formative or process evaluation, a summative or outcomes evaluation, or an impact evaluation. The chapter identifies the items in a logic model and explains the benefits of a logic model for a nonprofit organization. It describes the process used to conduct a program evaluation and also explains the term ‘performance measurement in a nonprofit organization’. Program evaluation includes performance measurement to assess overall organizational effectiveness. The chapter examines the relationship between program evaluation and financial sustainability.
This chapter describes the concept of social enterprise and explains the term ‘social entrepreneurship’. The term ‘social enterprise’ refers to a business activity intended to generate profit to finance a social, educational, cultural, religious, or charitable cause. A social enterprise is a for-profit business whose primary purpose is to reinvest its profits in not-for profit activities. There can be various types of social enterprises such as small-business entities, co-operative, social firm, credit union, trading arm to charity, and public sector spin-outs. The chapter explores the steps needed to develop a social enterprise and describes the key components of a business plan. The development of a social enterprise requires an investment, which implies some costs. The costs will be fixed and variable. The chapter emphasizes social entrepreneurship as a mission-driven enterprise and a strategy for financial sustainability in nonprofit organizations.
This chapter focuses on the asset-based approach to community development. It provides the different types of assets that create opportunities for a nonprofit organization, describes the asset-mapping process, and explains the relationship between asset mapping and financial sustainability. The chapter introduces the theories, concepts, and approaches of asset mapping as a strategy to help nonprofit organizations identify obvious and hidden assets within their communities, and mobilize them to connect issues and needs with assets, and foster the financial sustainability of a nonprofit organization. It examines the community context of nonprofit organizations in relation to community groups, neighborhoods, and larger social systems that influence quality of life. The chapter includes the concept and theory of community capacity, models of asset-based development for building community capacity, empowering individuals and groups, generating funding from new sources, and creating additional paths toward financial sustainability.
This chapter defines the concept of financial statement and introduces the generic structures or formats of three main financial statements: the income statement, the balance sheet, and the statement of cash flow. The income statement includes three major sections: The income or revenues, the expenses or expenditures, and the balance or summary. The balance sheet of a nonprofit organization includes three main sections: Assets, liabilities, and fund balance. The chapter establishes the differences between an income statement and balance sheet. It explains the sections of Internal Revenue Service (IRS) Form 990 related to the income statement and the balance sheet. The chapter explores the principles and procedures used to develop various financial statements and link them to the legal financial reporting requirements for a nonprofit organization. It helps the reader to gain experience with the basic terminology and tools to read nonprofit and public financial statements.
This chapter defines the concept of social marketing and provides some of the common areas for the use of social marketing by nonprofit organizations. The term “social marketing” has been used for several decades to refer to a systematic process of using marketing strategy to influence current behaviors of a target population into a desired behavior in order to positively change a social or community issue. The chapter describes the contents of a social marketing plan. A social marketing plan is a document that justifies the needs for a social marketing campaign, as well as the process of implementation by outlining a SWOT (strength, weakness, opportunity, threat) analysis, a description of the target population, the goals and objectives, an impact statement, the marketing mix strategies, an implementation plan, an evaluation plan, and a budget. The chapter establishes the relationship between social marketing and financial sustainability.
This chapter defines the term “human resource management”. Human resources management is the set of managerial activities involved in planning, recruiting, motivating, retaining, and developing a workforce that can contribute to the efficiency, effectiveness, overall performance, and sustainability of an organization. The chapter describes a human resource management system and human resource information system (HRIS). A generic HRIS includes components related to personnel management, time and attendance, payroll, and benefits. The chapter defines “job satisfaction” and discusses various job satisfaction approaches and theories, staff turnover, and staff retention. Theories in job satisfaction will be examined with respect to content, process, and situational theories. The chapter explains the key roles of human resources management and job satisfaction in the financial sustainability of a nonprofit organization and also explains relationship between human resources and financial sustainability.
This chapter discusses the life cycles of organizations and focuses on the life cycle of nonprofit organizations. Daft. R. L. argues that life cycle of an organization includes four stages: entrepreneurial, collectivity, formalization, and elaboration. Stevens. S. K. argues that nonprofit organizations evolve from vitality to regeneration, through seven stages, encompassing idea, start-up, growth, maturity, decline, turnaround, and terminal. The chapter identifies factors affecting organizational transformation process of nonprofit organizations and discusses the elements of an organizational transformation initiative. The organizational transformation of a nonprofit organization includes factors that are antecedent to the process and other elements that are part of the process. Organizational transformation is the consequence of other factors or elements, which must be taken into consideration in future plans of action. These factors include, but are not limited to, life cycles, internal environment, and external environment. The chapter explains the relationship between organizational transformation and financial sustainability.
This chapter describes the key phases of the strategic-planning process and ‘strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, threats’ (SWOT) analysis. A generic strategic-planning process includes three key phases of assessing, visioning, and strategizing in order to further the mission and vision of an organization. The vision, mission, and values statements constitute the core identity of a nonprofit organization. In other words, a nonprofit organization justifies its social or community relevance through its vision, mission, and values, and the extent to which they are reflected in governance and program implementation. The chapter discusses the relationship of strategic management and program effectiveness, and the interrelationships between strategic planning and financial sustainability. It introduces various approaches to effective strategic planning geared to the financial sustainability of a nonprofit organization.