Nonprofit Finance Fund (NFF) released the results of its 2014 State of the Nonprofit Sector Survey last week, and the findings are not surprising:
The economic recovery is leaving behind many nonprofits and communities in need:
- 80% of respondents reported an increase in demand for services, the 6th straight year of increased demand.
- 56% were unable to meet demand in 2013 - the highest reported in the survey's history.
- Only 11% expect 2014 to be easier than 2013 for the people they serve.
Nonprofits are working to bring in new money; in the next 12 months:
- 31% will change the main ways in which they raise and spend money.
- 26% will pursue an earned income venture.
- 20% will seek funding other than grants & contracts, such as loans or other investments.
41% of nonprofits named "achieving long-term financial stability" as a top challenge, yet:
- More than half of nonprofits (55%) have 3 months or less cash-on-hand.
- 28% ended their 2013 fiscal year with a deficit.
- Only 9% can have an open dialogue with funders about developing reserves for operating needs, and only 6% about developing reserves for long-term facility needs.
Nonprofits are taking wide-ranging steps to survive and succeed.
In the past 12 months:
- 49% collaborated with another organization to improve or increase services.
- 48% invested money or time in professional development.
- 40% upgraded hardware or software to improve organizational efficiency.
- 39% conducted long-term strategic or financial planning.
Respondents said that more than 70% of their funders requested impact or program metrics.
- 77% agreed that the metrics funders ask for are helpful in assessing impact.
- Only 1% reported that funders always cover the costs of impact measurement; 71% said costs were rarely or never covered.
For the full NFF survey, with an interactive survey analyzer and a look at trends over the past 6 years, go to http://survey.nonprofitfinancefund.org