If you’re involved with a nonprofit organization, you know how you use your limited resources matters. Your team continually works to improve the programs that enable you to collaborate with the community, attract new donors and secure consistent funding from select sources.
Concentrating your efforts there makes sense, but inefficiency impacts every aspect of your organization. Back-office operations, for example, include procedures that affect your entire organization, including public programs.
Why Are Back-Office Operations Important?
The public-facing side of your nonprofit organization gets the most engagement. It also receives the most funding. Still, back-office operations — the tasks and processes your team performs without public attention — support the part of your organization that brings in donor dollars.
Your organization cannot function without back-office operations like:
- Human resources (HR) processes.
- Information and technology (IT) support.
These departments perform essential work for the rest of your organization. Without them, you couldn’t hire new team members, accept volunteers, rely on your technology, keep finances in order or ensure compliance with local and federal nonprofit regulations.
Slow, disorganized or inaccurate back-office processes can affect your entire virtual nonprofit office.
3 Ways to Make Nonprofit Back-Office Operations More Efficient
Now that you see the need to increase efficiency, how will you implement new back-office processes? MIP Fund Accounting® has three tips to help you get started:
1. Automate Now and Save Resources Later
People make your nonprofit the vibrant place it is. Organizations need humanity to give them their purpose, which they can then fulfill. Still, experiencing human errors and manually completing back-office tasks make those operations far less efficient.
Automation completes repetitive tasks and supports your team as they perform more complex roles. When your team improves organizing, reporting and sharing through automation, you’ll see a significant rise in productivity. That development means using fewer resources on your organization’s simplest tasks.
Using an automated solution can facilitate communication between departments. Some nonprofit organizations are inefficient because public-facing and back-office staff don’t collaborate. Sharing information is an essential step to organizing your data and making it accessible to team members who need it.
2. Provide Initial and Ongoing Training
Automating your back-office operations and facilitating team collaboration involves new processes. Implementing back-office software and getting your departments to interact in alternative ways often requires a training program.
Providing initial training for your staff ensures everyone receives the same baseline of familiarity with your organization’s new strategy. Once you’ve adopted methods to make your virtual nonprofit office more efficient and implemented the initial training program, you can look for concepts that may require extra educational chapters.
Ongoing training is an excellent opportunity to cover concepts like:
- How to share information with other departments.
- How to embrace innovation within the organization.
- How to use extra features to complete daily tasks.
- How to critique the process constructively, without blaming team members.
3. Communicate Your Efforts
Too often, organizations rely on the flashiest details of public-facing programs to prove they’re putting their donor dollars to work. Making back-office operations more efficient lacks the promotional power of interacting with your community. Still, disclosure requirements and accountability expectations create incentives for your nonprofit organization to share more information about how it uses funds in every part of its operations.
Legal and reputation-related reasons to communicate your office operations are great incentives. Plus, office-savvy donors who understand how your organization works recognize how using funds to make your back-office tasks more efficient can be successful in the long run. Therefore, they will continue supporting those efforts.
How Our Software Can Improve Your Virtual Nonprofit Office Operations
A purpose-built platform like the MIP Fund Accounting software solution has several benefits for your nonprofit, including:
- User-friendly dashboards.
- Cloud-based and on-premise deployment options.
- Data security.
- Automated and compliant reporting.
- Unlimited budget forecasting.
- Robust payroll and human resources management capabilities.
Because our software is scalable and configurable, you have the freedom to make choices that meet our organization’s needs.
The Risks of the Wrong Software
Each software solution alleviates unique pain points, takes a variable amount of time to implement and comes with a price tag attached. If your organization makes a hasty decision and chooses a platform without accounting for these factors, you risk:
- Buying software that doesn’t meet your needs.
- Needing more time for implementation than you can spare.
- Overspending on software or extra features.
Depending on the software, you may need an in-house IT team to set you up for success.
Kick-Start Efficiency With Our Software Solution
If you want to make nonprofit back-office operations more efficient at your organization, MIP Fund Accounting can help.