The end of the fiscal year is fast approaching. What can your organization do to prepare? Let's take a look at a few tips to close out the current year and prepare for the next one.
1. Review your budget and make sure you have enough money to cover expenses through the end of the fiscal year. If you've burned through your budget already, incorporate your shortfalls into next year's budget. If you have any overages, consider whether you need to use them. Are there grants that you could otherwise lose?
2. Make sure all of your financial records are up to date and accurate. This will make it easier to monitor your progress and spot any potential problems. Reconcile all your accounts, print out your reports, and prepare for your tax returns. Anything you can do now will make tax season a little less hectic.
3. Begin preparing your annual report early. This will give you more time to gather information and tell your organization's story effectively. Annual reports for nonprofits don't just include financial reporting. They're also an effective and important form of marketing.
4. Plan ahead for any big fundraising events or campaigns. Now is the time to start planning for the coming year. If you're holding an event, start booking venues and vendors. If you're planning a capital campaign, start putting together your case for support.
5. Make sure your website and other marketing materials are up to date. This will help you attract new donors and supporters. Update the website regarding anything exciting and interesting that happened throughout the year. Add information that donors will need for the coming year.
6. Take some time to recognize the accomplishments of your staff and volunteers. This will help them feel appreciated and motivated to continue their good work. Ask which volunteers are staying on and ask for referrals for new volunteers. If they've enjoyed the work they've done, they'll be eager to start.
7. Have a plan in place for dealing with any unexpected challenges that may arise. This will help you keep your organization running smoothly no matter what comes up. What challenges arose the previous year? How were they managed? Can you think of ways to manage them more effectively?
By planning ahead, your nonprofit can be well-prepared for the coming year. Take the time to organize, analyze, and reflect. Celebrate your wins and enter the coming year renewed and energetic.