Developing Data Capability in Your Not-for-Profit is a guide to help you work through the six types of data that not-for-profit organisations most often work with — such as fundraising data and program data — and what you can actually do with that data. It’s a framework intended to be used as a preliminary resource to help get your organisation thinking about data before embarking on data projects.
Finding it hard to get started with data? This framework is your ticket out of the maze.
The problem is familiar: a lack of awareness, skills and funding makes it difficult for not-for-profit organisations to embrace opportunities to use data to optimise, automate and personalise aspects of their programs. Collecting data does not automatically lead to improved organisational efficiency and program effectiveness.
To achieve that requires a clearer focus on data quality, analysis and use, along with relevant training.
This framework emerged from Our Community’s experience working with thousands of not-for-profits across Australia and New Zealand – from very small local groups to large national organisations, pursuing a range of important social changes.
Now, with the support of Equity Trustees, we’re aiming to improve the data capabilities of not-for-profits and share the lessons we learn along the way.
We first identified the six types of data that not-for-profit organisations most often work with – such as fundraising data and program data – and then mapped these onto a hierarchy of what organisations can actually do with the data. The resulting matrix can help frame efforts to identify an organisation’s existing strengths and weaknesses, as well as shape its longer-term data strategy and goals. Of course, creating a data culture and capabilities is not like turning on a light switch – it takes time, effort and reflection.
We hope this framework will kickstart the conversation in your organisation.
- Data Projects from Go to Whoa!
- Guide to publicly available data sources
- Data Security Protocols
- More resources from the Our Community Collection