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nonprofit revenue options

A Step-by-Step Guide to Creating a Nonprofit Financing Plan

Financing Plan Guide screenshotIn our ongoing effort to develop tools to make nonprofit organizations more effective, more financially sustainable and ultimately able to create more social impact, we are releasing today our Financing Plan Guide. This step-by-step guide provides nonprofit staff and boards a clear, systematic approach to creating a financing plan for their organization.

A financing plan, unlike a traditional fundraising plan, is an integrated, thoughtful, and strategic way to help a nonprofit achieve social impact in a more sustainable way. The financing plan is a key element of a nonprofit’s strategic plan. It is critical that an organization understand the cost of achieving the goals set out in the strategic plan (expenses) and how the organization will pay for them (revenue). Fundraising, raising money from private sources (individuals, foundations, and corporations), is just one revenue option available to nonprofits. Additional options include: earned income (selling a product or service), government grants, fee for service, and corporate sponsorships, just to name a few.

A financing plan differs from a fundraising plan in a number of ways. Unlike a fundraising plan, a financing plan:

  • Includes ALL activities that bring money in the door in a fully integrated strategy and execution plan.
  • Supports the short AND long term goals of the organization.
  • Funds the programs AND infrastructure of the organization.
  • Employs money-securing activities that are in line with the core competencies of the organization.

With a clear financing plan, your nonprofit will bring more money in the door, in a more sustainable way, ultimately achieving greater social impact.

This 8-part guide is designed to help you build a financing plan for your nonprofit. It is divided into parts and can be completed in a couple of hours, if you have all of the necessary information in front of you. If you would like to include board and staff in the process, you can pause between sections and work through it over a few weeks. The sections of the financing guide are:

1. Align Money, Mission and Competence
2. The Financing Plan Framework
3. Create Revenue Goals
4. Create A Capital Goal
5. Create A Fundraising Infrastructure Goal
6. Operationalize the Plan
7. Monitor the Plan
8. Next Steps

To learn more about the financing guide, click here.

As always, let us know what you think of our tools and what additional tools you would like to see.

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