State of the Nonprofit Sector
NFF regularly takes the temperature of the US social sector by reaching out to thousands of nonprofits about their programmatic, financial, and operational issues, and analyzing the dynamics underlying their responses. Gathering and sharing this critical data – aggregated and by sub-sector, organization size, geography, and other factors – is a major pillar of NFF’s commitment to unlock the potential of mission-driven organizations by sharing accessible insights.
When we launched the survey in 2008, economic crisis was threatening the viability of many organizations. In the most recent survey (2015), we saw signs of recovery, stabilization, and growth – but nonprofit leaders continued to voice concerns about succession planning, workforce retention, and their general readiness to ensure long-term financial sustainability in the post-recession’s ‘new normal’ operating environment. As one leader put it: “Although we manage to keep our financial heads above water – our greatest challenge is the uncertainty and constancy of operating on such a knife edge.”
Among the 2015 survey’s key findings:
Under-resourced communities are going without because nonprofits can't meet demand.
US economic recovery hasn't resolved nonprofits’ systemic and funding challenges.
For more about the 2015 survey
The State of the Sector Survey now operates on a three-year schedule. We'll be reaching out in early 2018, and look forward to adding and raising your voice!
NFF thanks the Bank of America Charitable Foundation for generously supporting the State of the Sector survey since 2010. The 2015 survey was also generously supported by the David and Lucile Packard Foundation.