Nonprofit Technology

Assess Your Nonprofit’s Digital Maturity and Benchmark for the Future

By | 5 min read | Published

Is your nonprofit organization ready to face what technology has in store for you? After the economical upheaval over the last few years, 76% of nonprofits are now searching for new ways to fundraise and function with digital technology.

You may think of it as a digital transformation, but you should start assessing your readiness now. With a clear understanding of your current digital maturity level, you’ll be better prepared to develop strategies for improvement as part of your nonprofit digital strategy.

What is digital maturity?

Digital maturity measures how your nonprofit organization responds to and leverages data and technological trends. Your level of digital maturity is important—a 2020 Salesforce report found that digital maturity correlates with whether nonprofits were on track for their fundraising goals.

As you successfully assess your digital infrastructure and environment, you can better adapt and develop strategies to reach your mission as a nonprofit organization.

3 steps to assess digital maturity benchmarking

Preparing your organization to leverage data may involve several challenges, but it’s nothing new. You’ve already faced the worst upheaval in recent history. Now, nonprofit leaders like you are taking a step back. You’re assessing how the digital transformation will continue.

You’re navigating through the minefields of technology and determining how to best serve your donors and your cause. Simultaneously, you face the challenges of engaging with your donors, how to keep them involved, and how to connect with them in new ways. Here’s a step-by-step roadmap that should help you accomplish all those goals.


Rethink your plan

You probably already use a strategic plan for fundraising and operations. Now, consider your digital maturity, including how it will integrate with and impact your entire organization.

As part of your digital maturity benchmarking, it’s important to research technology plans that won’t break the bank. Here are a few resources to help you in your research:

  • 4 Free Nonprofit Budget Templates: If your business has limited funds to assess your strategic plan, consider these free budget templates. These tools will help you manage your budget without breaking the bank.
  • 5 Top-Rated Nonprofit Fundraising Software: Here are a few great examples of top fundraising software you can use to streamline your donation management. These fundraising tools offer the features you need for your campaigns.

Immerse yourself in online platforms

Your nonprofit’s online presence has become more important than ever. Online giving has exponentially increased in frequency and value over the last five to ten years. So, even if you’ve avoided fully immersing yourself and your organization in online platforms, now is the time to change that.

If you’re not yet taking advantage of online fundraising channels, you’re missing important fundraising opportunities. If your organization already has a presence via your website, social media, and email campaigns, determine the effectiveness of those channels. It’s likely you’re not fully tapping into the potential of online fundraising.


Improve communication

Communication is key to your success as a nonprofit leader, but it’s also important for your organization. Your communication across your nonprofit is a powerful tool, which allows you to better engage with your employees, deliver compelling messaging, and instill “big picture” visions in your team. To prove the point, 85% of employees say that they feel more motivated when their leaders share company updates.

According to Gartner, by motivating and inspiring your employees, you’re also building trust and delivering value to your donors (full content available to Gartner clients). You’re also connecting with your employees and your audiences. Your goal, then, with effectively communicating is not to just tell your audiences’ stories, but also convey their unique experience. You need to be a great storyteller, but you also need to communicate why you care and (by extension) why they should care.

Next step: Invest in digital maturity for your nonprofit

You’ve faced challenges before, but you’ve survived as a leader and as an organization. Now’s the time to build upon what you’ve learned about your organization, your donors, and those you serve. With a plan, you can dig deeper into your online presence and improve your communication channels.

You can and will become a stronger, more productive force for the good of your cause. You’re investing in technology. You’re putting time and energy into leveling up your digital maturity as a nonprofit organization. It’s part of what you and your nonprofit organization need to do and become for your future success and growth.

Want more resources?

As a nonprofit leader, you need to respond to digital maturity benchmarking for nonprofits. To help support your response, we regularly share our best recommendations, educational resources, and practical tips to help your organization succeed. With our knowledge base of nonprofit resources, you’ll get answers to frequently asked questions. We’ll help you plan for fundraising and operational situations with your team.

Looking for Nonprofit software? Check out Capterra's list of the best Nonprofit software solutions.

About the Author

Esther Lombardi - Guest Contributor

Esther Lombardi - Guest Contributor

Esther A. Lombardi is a writer and journalist who writes on topics such as marketing, technology and software, healthcare, business and finance, legal, real estate, and education. She has a master's degree in English Literature and a background in web technology and journalism.

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