With the beginning of President Obama’s second term, a slowly recovering economy and a fiscal cliff narrowly averted, nonprofits have a lot to discuss and anticipate in 2013. Numerous reports have been released, throughout January, demonstrating 2012′s final figures and giving insight for trends to be on the lookout for through this year. This outlook includes issues around hiring trends, attention to succession planning, deployment of mobile technology, social giving campaigns, and, crucially, the impact of tax reform and proposals on the missions of nonprofits.

Implementing More Technology & Social Giving Campaigns

One main area experts agree on is the increase of technology deployment in the nonprofit sector. In particular, a Blackbaud report shows that mobile technology will be significant this year, with more than two-thirds of surveyed NPOs planning to utilize more mobile technology this year. Alongside this trend, a range of new nonprofit tech companies are emerging- giving organizations in this sector many more technology options; ranging from fully integrated suites to specialized programs for basic needs like nonprofit accounting tools, constituent relationship management or volunteer management portals. NPOs should look to fully explore these options to complement their growing mobile tech utilisation.

A bigger emphasis is also expected to be placed on social giving campaigns in 2013. The 2012 Nonprofit Social Network Benchmark Report says to expect three things:

  • More usage of Google+
  • The monetization of Facebook
  • Increased fundraising efforts through Twitter

Nonprofits are planning for growth

An Increase Hiring & Succession Planning

The Improve Group and Nonprofit HR Solutions released a report showing that 44 percent of surveyed nonprofits planned to hire more and create new positions this year. Positions in direct services in fundraising were at the forefront of organizations’ hiring plans. Despite this hiring focus, the study also reports that 70 percent of nonprofits lacked a formal succession plan. Those who had implemented a such a strategy reported that it brought their organization peace of mind, developed talent, and retained staff. Experts predict that this area of strategy will come into focus more explicitly for NPOs this year.

Some Are Weary Of Tax Uncertainties, Some See Promise

Tax promises and concerns are, however, still at the top of mind in the nonprofit sector. Until some months pass and charitable giving trends can be analyzed, long-term impacts of the American Taxpayer Relief Act can’t be certain. Some think the act could positively impact giving by $3.3 billion, while others still fear proposed tax ceilings fearing a negative impact of the same amount. This is a big year for nonprofits. A lot is yet to be determined. What is your take on the state of nonprofits for the remainder of 2013?

Ashley Halligan

Ashley Halligan

Nonprofit Analyst at Software Advice
Ashley Halligan is a nonprofit analyst at Austin-based consulting firm, Software Advice. She regularly reports on news and trends in the sector. She also covers energy management issues. She is a 2007 graduate from Marietta College with a BA in journalism. Ashley also freelances, particularly in the realm of travel and feature writing.
Ashley Halligan