In a report commissioned by the Guardian, we’ve learned what is changing in corporate fundraising trends – but how do we cope?
What to expect:
Charities will increasingly be run like businesses to adapt to corporations’ expectations. More and more often, companies will expect charities to focus on delivering results, especially in terms of company profits, in order to maintain and grow corporate relationships.
Businesses are taking on more pressure these days – pressure to improve transparency, demonstrate responsibility, and account for access to resources. This pressure means that corporations need something tangible and substantial out of funding a charity or other nonprofits.
How to adapt:
A shift in what companies are expecting means a shift in what charities should offer with sponsorships and corporate relationships. Businesses will want to involve their staff power, using community involvement to give employees new skills that will ultimately add to their bottom line. If they aren’t already doing so now, they will. Use this to your advantage. Present your corporate partner with opportunities to use your charity’s resources and expertise in order to strengthen their team, and gain better access to the public.
Giving a company’s staff a volunteer day is a great example of what a nonprofit can do. Community involvement helps staff tap into new markets, conduct field research, and improve their reputation through participation in cause-related initiatives.
And always remember – the relationship between corporate business and charitable causes is becoming more dynamic, and more demanding for nonprofits. Your cause must align with a company’s business interests for a lasting relationship to be established.
Nadia Doubiany is a senior at the University of Iowa earning a BA in International Studies with an emphasis in Human Rights, a Certificate in Fundraising and Philanthropy Communication, and a Minor in Spanish. She currently works as Program Coordinator for the Council for International Visitors to Iowa Cities – a local nonprofit, and looks forward to a career in Human Rights advocacy and Community Development.