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Six Signs Your Nonprofit Is Ripe for Fraud

 

We in the nonprofit sector don’t like the “F” word … fraud, that is.

After all, we’re in the business of doing good, and fraud is just bad and ugly. However, turning a blind eye to the possibility can be even more damaging than the actual deception.

Consider this: Of those who responded to the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners’ 2016 Global Fraud Study, 10.1 percent of victim organizations were nonprofits that reported a median loss of $100,000; 18.7 percent were government agencies that reported a median loss of $109,000.

Is your nonprofit ripe for fraud? If we’re being totally honest, it probably is, particularly if any or all of the following scenarios sound familiar:


Partner Down

It seems collaboration is one of the most-discussed words in the field of philanthropy these days, right up there with transparency and administrative cost control.

But is forming a collaborative partnership for everyone? Even though I am a strong proponent of building collaborative efforts, I would argue that it is not.


FASB Modifies Not-for-Profit Accounting Rules

FASB [Financial Accounting Standards Board] issued a new accounting standard Thursday [August 18, 2016] that is designed to help not-for-profits tell their stories through their financial statements.

Not-for-profit financial statements have been prepared under FASB's current guidance since 1993. The new standard changes presentation and disclosure requirements with the intention of helping not-for-profits provide more relevant information about their resources—and the changes in those resources—to donors, grantors, creditors, and other financial statement users.


The Nonprofit Summer Games Closing Ceremonies


Thank you so much to all of the nonprofits that played in the first-ever Nonprofit Summer Games! We hope you all enjoyed participating as much as we enjoyed hosting.

Now for the official announcement of which organization(s) won each round, along with other key highlights from the games. Congratulations to all! (Note: all winners were selected at random from the participants in their events.)


6 Back to School Lessons for Online Fundraising


Summer’s almost over, and the weather is starting to get a little cooler.

Kids and college students will be packing up book bags and suitcases and heading off to their respective halls of knowledge to learn about the Pythagorean theorem and the significance of metaphors in 18th century British literature.

But what about you? What do you want to learn more about this semester?

There are any number of fantastic courses available, but the best place to start is right here.


Why the new overtime rules are good for nonprofits and thus for our community



If you work in nonprofit in the US, you have heard that new federal overtime laws/rules are coming. They affect how we categorize the professionals in our sector—“Exempt” or “Non-Exempt”—and how we pay them, whether through set salaries or through hourly wages that include overtime for hours worked over 40. If reading that sentence makes you want to hyperventilate into a paper bag for a few minutes, you’re not alone. Many people are freaking out about these new laws and how to comply with them, because they take effect this coming December!


Foundation Transparency: Game Over?

 

The tranquil world of America's foundations is about to be shaken, but if you read the Center for Effective Philanthropy's (CEP) new study -- Sharing What Matters, Foundation Transparency -- you would never know it.

Don't get me wrong. That study, like everything CEP produces, is carefully researched, insightful and thoroughly professional. But it misses the single biggest change in foundation transparency in decades: the imminent release by the Internal Revenue Service of foundation 990-PF (and 990) tax returns as machine-readable open data.


What Might a BRIDGE-Enabled World Look Like?


For several years, we’ve been talking about the benefits to the philanthropic sector as the BRIDGE number becomes widely adopted as a standard for identifying global philanthropic entities. The primary focus of BRIDGE has always been to enable interoperability.


A Better Way to Explore the Nonprofit Sector


The Key to Great Year-end Fundraising? Your Brand

And just like that, it’s August, which (believe it or not!) is a great time to take a step back and plan ahead for year-end fundraising season.


Stark Realities Every Fundraiser Must Face

In life, there are stark realities no one wants to face. Your child’s growing interest in skydiving, for instance.

When it comes to fundraising, I’ve identified the most inconvenient truths in my book, Fundraising Realities Every Board Member Must Face. In this space, I’ll abbreviate six of the most challenging.


Impact Investment – now a global movement


The preceding is cross-posted with permission from the Alliance blog. Based out of the UK, Alliance magazine is the leading global magazine on philanthropy and social investment.

‘Let’s do it – people’s lives depend on it.’ That was the opening line from Big Society Capital founder Sir Ronald Cohen, by video to the Global Impact Investment Plenary in Lisbon: a gathering of 250 people from many countries. 

There is no doubt that the Social Impact Investment Taskforce, which launched three years ago when the UK hosted the G8, has kickstarted a global movement. As Nick O’Donohoe noted, it brought consistency and clarity, and now it’s moving from rhetoric to reality.


5 Simple Metrics Every Nonprofit Should Track and Why

Use these fundraising metrics to evaluate the success of your campaigns, achieve a return on investment (ROI), and boost the health of your organization.


Adding to your Board? Top 10 Questions to Ask when Choosing a Board Recruiting Service


Identifying new trustees for your board of directors
is one of the most important functions any nonprofit board performs. And with nearly 2 million board seats opening up in this country every year, board recruiting can be challenging. For that reason, many nonprofits opt to turn to board recruiting services like BoardAssist for help. Choosing the best board recruiting service for your nonprofit is critical.

What questions should you be asking as you think through who will perform the very important function of board recruiting for you?  


4 Common Website Problems that Cost You Members and Revenue


If you're not growing your membership or generating the kind of revenue you want, your website could be a major culprit. In fact, most membership organizations suffer from at least one major website problem. The good news is, fixing these website issues is probably a lot easier than you might think. To help you, I've put together this quick guide on how to diagnose your website for four common problems, and how best to address them.

Learning What Matters to Nonprofits

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Next month, I’ll be at the Mission Capital conference to discuss “Measuring What Matters: How Funders and Nonprofits Are Leveraging Data.” Of course, before you can measure what matters, you have to know what matters. The good news is that we can often agree about “what matters” in the lives of the individuals, families, and communities we serve. When we talk about “measuring” what matters, however, we find out very quickly that the devil is in the details. Precision and accuracy are needed to lend credibility to measuring the success of our efforts.


The 5 Biggest Benefits of Nonprofit Automation


One of your biggest sources of professional pride
is probably also one of its most frustrating parts: You’re doing the work of three people!


Opening a Window on Your Nonprofit’s Performance

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As a conscientious leader of your organization (board member or senior staff), you put a lot of thought and effort into developing your strategic plan. Ideally, the planning process resulted in quantifiable goals that will be tracked over the course of the year to measure progress on the plan. Peter Drucker’s quote, “What gets measured gets improved,” is as valid today as when he first said it. But the challenge is how best to track and report on progress, because you’re engaging busy volunteers who are probably only working on portions of the plan, and then only sporadically. Because many people are visually oriented, charts and graphs are natural ways to report measurement. That’s why many organizations regularly produce dashboards as their windows on performance.


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