Nonprofit Software: Finding the Right Match in 2017

Like most nonprofit organizations with an online presence, your team probably uses one (or many) online tools to manage your content and constituents. Think of your online software as being in a long, committed relationship. Your digital platforms should support your needs and continue to grow with you. As in life, sometimes you realize that they may not be the right fit for you.

  • Are you constantly finding workarounds to get your systems to do what you need them to?
  • Do you feel limited by your software’s capabilities?
  • Are you worried that you may be overpaying for what you have?

If you answered yes to any of these questions, you’re probably itching to shop around. As you know, technology is constantly changing. Tools that were once amazing and shiny can quickly be overshadowed by more competitive options. With so many choices to consider, where do you even begin? How do you know which tool is the right one for you? Maybe you need a matchmaker. Consider calling in a professional, like Firefly Partners, to help simplify the process.

The Questionnaire
A matchmaker would probably ask you to fill out a questionnaire to learn more about you. Similarly, the first step to a successful tool evaluation is Discovery. Firefly will lead your team through a number of discovery sessions to define your specific wish list. We will audit your current system to learn how you currently use your software and identify the items that you find challenging or undo-able. Is sending email messages time consuming?  How easily can you create new donation forms?  It is also important to define your online goals and consider how a new tool will help you meet them.

Once you have defined your goals and put together your wish list for your new software, Firefly will help you narrow down these items by prioritizing which items are “must have” items versus “nice to have” items. This wish list will guide us in finding a compatible system for you.

Initial Matches
Our team has extensive knowledge of the different online software available, and we will use our experience to put together a list of initial vendors to check out. As you can imagine, a matchmaker may start with dozens of potential matches, but in gathering more detailed information about how well each system might meet your requirements, we will help you narrow the choices down to a manageable number. Next, we’ll schedule initial demos (or first dates) with the three or four systems that most closely match your wish list.   No duds allowed!  You can feel confident that Firefly will focus on the demos with software that will work for your needs.

Once The Dates are Over
Firefly will debrief with you after each demo to determine which companies are worth looking into further. At this point, if you have questions or need more information about a specific area, we will gather these details from the software vendors. You may be able to eliminate some options based on the initial demo experiences, and another set of meetings will be scheduled for a more in-depth look at the top contenders.

A Match is Made
After careful evaluation, Firefly will make our online tool recommendation. Once you have made your selection, we will coordinate with the software provider so your paperwork can move forward. We will also put together an implementation plan so your team is prepared for the implementation work that follows.

The software evaluation and selection process can feel overwhelming and time consuming. By partnering with us, Firefly will ease your workload so you can focus on your primary job responsibilities. We manage implementation projects with clear communication and realistic plans, allowing everyone to stay on task.  In dating or technology, having professional help can make the experience a faster and more efficient one.

Want to learn more?  Read a Migration Case Study.
We love helping our clients find their perfect match so if you’re in the market for a new online tool, contact us!

 

 

 

 

 

 

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