Perhaps you’ve dreamed about running your own nonprofit, and you’ve finally reached a place in life where you can make it come true. It’s important to do your research before starting this process – getting a nonprofit off the ground takes a lot of work! Thankfully, you can rely on services like Reconciled to simplify bookkeeping and other financial processes with QuickBooks. Here are some basic steps you’ll need to take in setting up a nonprofit.
Choose Your Cause
What cause should your nonprofit focus on? Think about local issues that affect your community negatively, yet don’t get much attention. You might be the right person to finally shed some light on these pressing problems.
First, you’ll need to officially register your organization with the nonprofit structure – to qualify, Chron states that your organization must serve a clear charitable, educational, scientific, literary, or faith-based purpose. This structure will help you easily apply for grants and other sources of public funding. You’ll be required to establish bylaws outlining how you’ll operate, including how your organization will be governed, when you’ll hold board meetings, your voting procedures, and how you’ll handle conflicts of interest.
When you do begin collecting donations, you’ll have to manage your finances wisely.
So, organize your tax forms and financial statements, make your financial data accessible to stakeholders, create and update your budgets regularly, and maintain strong internal controls for spending. Working with a virtual bookkeeping service can help you save time and money in this area.
Promote Your Organization
To draw in donations, connect with more volunteers, and bring more attention to your cause, you need to market your nonprofit. You can try setting up a nonprofit blog, posting on social media, and setting up a booth at local events. Creating an impressive logo with an online logo maker can also help! To make a logo, just pick a style and icon that represents your organization, add the name of your nonprofit, and then choose the font and colors you’d like for your final design.
Hiring employees and bringing in volunteers requires a sound recruitment strategy. Make sure to get set up on platforms like LinkedIn, and start advertising open positions on job boards. Global Owls recommends emphasizing your brand and highlighting what sets your nonprofit apart, especially when it comes to your internal workplace culture.
Managing your team can be complicated, especially if you’re overseeing both employees and volunteers who likely have very different responsibilities. Take the time to identify your employees’ individual strengths so that you can effectively delegate tasks. When it comes to managing volunteers, you’ll need to provide training, make sure there are time slots that work with varied schedules, give out rewards to dedicated volunteers, and directly ask people to volunteer for tasks you know they’re passionate about.
Growing Your Nonprofit
Over time, you might want to take on bigger challenges within your nonprofit – and while growth can be exciting, it’s important to approach organizational growth with sustainability in mind. Basically, you don’t want to bite off more than you can chew. Take time to figure out which new roles you’ll need to fill, and slowly begin expanding your team with new hires. Explore additional opportunities for fundraising and prioritize networking with other organizations in your area. You’ll be able to learn a lot simply by working alongside other nonprofit leaders who have been in your shoes before.
Running a nonprofit allows you to directly tackle problems in your community. It’s not easy – but it’s definitely worth it! Choose a cause, figure out how you’ll manage your finances, design a logo to market your nonprofit, and plan for growth. With these guidelines, you’ll be in a good position in setting up a nonprofit.
Do you need bookkeeping services for your nonprofit? You can turn to Reconciled for support! Fill out the contact form on our website today to learn more about our services.
Brittany Fisher of Financiallywell.info