Nonprofit Technology Upgrades to Boost Efficiency in 2023

by | Feb 22, 2023

It goes without saying: digital technology has helped nonprofits grow their reach and impact in countless ways. 

Over the past few decades the social sector was introduced to websites, email, social media accounts and more—and we’ve never looked back. 

Today’s new era of cloud software and chatbots has ushered in a new wave of technology for nonprofits. These smart tech tools can save your organization both time and money (and lower your overall stress level). Some can even help you acquire new donors.

It’s difficult to pinpoint a single most important technology for nonprofits in 2023, as the technology landscape is constantly evolving and the needs of nonprofits can vary greatly depending on their size, mission, and goals. 

However, there are a few key technologies that are likely to be especially important for nonprofits in 2023:

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Must-Have Technology for Nonprofits in 2023

Some of the solutions below are free, while some aren’t. But one or more might just revolutionize how you approach your day-to-day tasks, manage interdepartmental projects, and engage your biggest current (and future) supporters.

1. Click-and-Drag Graphic Design Software

Around 88% of nonprofits have an operating budget below $500,000, meaning that cost savings are essential for the average organization. 

Free and paid graphic design tools can help maximize your team’s creative output with limited bandwidth, allowing you to:

  • Customize premade templates with branded style elements like logos, colors and fonts.
  • Produce eye-popping infographics, social media photos and one-pagers with a professional look.
  • Develop a library of visual assets as if you have a full creative team working around the clock.

Thanks to the many options out there, you no longer need to be a graphic designer to produce high quality, on-brand visuals that convey your mission’s impact.

Examples: Canva, Adobe Spark, Visme

2. AI-Powered Language Processing Tools

In the past year, we have witnessed an AI chatbot explosion. These advanced tools enable you to have conversation-like interactions with technology, which can answer questions and produce human-like written communications. The solutions they offer expand your capabilities to:

  • Write engaging articles that can increase web traffic to your site.
  • Reduce the time you spend researching funding opportunities or topics related to your mission.
  • Automate service-oriented tasks and follow-up with potential and current customers.

While it’s still wise to proofread, fact-check and edit whatever these chatbots write, there’s no question that these tools can save your team hours of work.

Examples: ChatGPT, Jasper, Google Bard

3. All-in-One Fundraising Platform

There are many types of fundraising software available, including online giving platforms, peer-to-peer fundraising software, and text-to-give tools. These can help nonprofits raise more money and reach more donors by helping you:

  • Run effective campaigns and events, such as fundraisers or auctions, which can generate significant revenue.
  • Automate processes such as donor communication, tracking donations and generating reports, which can save time and reduce administrative overhead.
  • Accept more than one type of gift, such as stocks or cryptocurrencies which have become increasingly popular for charitable giving.

As online giving continues to grow, nonprofits will need to invest in digital fundraising tools to engage donors and raise funds. 

Examples: The Giving Block, Fundraise Up, Freewill

4. Cloud Computing

Cloud computing can offer cost-effective, scalable solutions for nonprofits to manage their data, processes, and services. In today’s increasingly digital work environments, cloud solutions are essential if you want to: 

  • Avoid the upfront costs of buying and maintaining their own servers and other IT infrastructure, which can be quite expensive.
  • Easily scale up or down IT resources as needed, without needing to invest in new hardware or software.
  • Improve collaboration among nonprofit staff, volunteers, and partners, since cloud-based platforms and tools make it easier to share and work on data and projects together.

These solutions can also provide flexibility and remote access, which can be especially important for nonprofits with dispersed teams.

Examples: Google Drive, OneDrive, IDrive, Box

5. CRM Software

A CRM system can help nonprofits manage their interactions with key stakeholders. More specifically, it can track donation history, volunteer hours, and other important data, and help the nonprofit communicate with supporters more effectively. Budget for a modern CRM solution if you want to: 

  • Manage donor information, track donations, and create reports on giving history.
  • Track grant opportunities, manage the application process, and monitor the status of grant requests.
  • Measure impact, record outcomes, and communicate with program participants.

A study of the benefits of sales CRM solutions found that for every dollar spent, a company could expect a return on investment (ROI) of about $8. For mission-driven organizations, that’s an investment in good you can’t ignore. 

Examples: Monday.com, Kindful, Salesforce

6. Cybersecurity and IT Tools

According to IBM, the average cost of a data breach in the United States in 2022 was $9.44 million. Ensuring that your nonprofit’s data is secure and protects against cyber attacks is essential to ensure that you’ll be able to:

  • Comply with laws and regulations, such as the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) guidelines which reflects the growing belief that privacy is a human right.
  • Instill greater trust with donors that their sensitive data, such as credit card numbers and home addresses, is protected and safe.
  • Protect against viruses and attacks which can be reputation damaging, inconvenient, and costly.

Remember, cyber attacks are not just problems for the world’s biggest platforms like Twitter and Instagram. With the increasing dependence on digital technologies, cybersecurity is becoming more important for nonprofits, too. 

Examples: Avast (malware protection), Nessus (vulnerability scanning), Veritas (data recovery)

Invest Wisely in Your Nonprofit’s Future

It’s important for nonprofits to regularly evaluate their technology needs and invest in the solutions that will best help them achieve their mission.

Ultimately, the most important technology for nonprofits will depend on their unique circumstances and priorities. 

Webinar Series: New Fundraising Strategies for 2023 + Q&A

Discover how to incorporate increasingly-popular assets to donate like stock and cryptocurrencies into your 2023 fundraising strategy. 

You’re encouraged to join us, especially if you’re responsible for development, advancement or fundraising at a 501(c)3 or similar organization including:

  • Smaller, local, or community based charities
  • Nonprofit organizations with a regional, national or global reach
  • Faith-based organizations and churches

Bring your questions to this conversation, as there will be time for a Q&A at the end of the webinar. 

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