The nonprofit sector can be an intimidating arena. With IRS regulations, restrictions and limitations to abide by as well as state legislation, the compliance components can damage your spirit to help others. Fortunately, there are many places you can go for help if you are unsure or worried about remaining in compliance. Asking for nonprofit help, looking for nonprofit resources or seeking advice can potentially save your organization a great deal of time, energy, fees and violations. There are opportunities for nonprofit help during every step of the process as well as for any issue you may be facing. You simply just have to know where to look and what to look for.
Need Help Finding Your Way?
Researching companies that have experience in dealing with nonprofits is an excellent first step in getting the nonprofit help you need for your organization to grow. By working with an experienced individual or organization, you are drastically increasing your chances that the work will be done accurately the first time potentially saving you a great deal of time. This can also allow you to focus on more important issues facing your organization rather than wasting valuable time and resources on something that can very easily be done better by someone else.
For new organizations, recruiting assistance can be even more important; getting your organization started in the right direction initially can foster your organizations’ long-term success. Many times, outsourcing can produce better quality results in a shorter amount of time. This will allow your staff or volunteers extra time to work on expanding or carrying out your current programs as well as developing new ones.
Help with Research
Every organization—nonprofit or otherwise—needs to do extensive research before launching a full-fledged business. If you have a cause you feel passionately about, it can be helpful to use research resources in order to obtain all the necessary information to get started. Doing research will allow you to get more information about the problem or issue you will be working on. The more statistics, testimonies, facts, and information you have, the easier it will be to get people to support your cause. You’ll also want to do research about other organizations that might already be addressing this issue, and what they are doing. If you need help with research, you can hire a third party to gather and analyze information for you while you work on other aspects of launching the nonprofit.
Help with Finances
Despite the name “nonprofit,” there are plenty of profits and finances to keep track of when running an organization. Due to the nature of a charitable organization, the tax and financial recording side of the business is extremely vital if you want to avoid problems. One activity that is commonly outsourced to professionals is preparing their annual 990 return and other nonprofit accounting and bookkeeping related activities. By having a professional that is well-versed in nonprofit accounting and bookkeeping, you can be confident that you are filing all necessary forms accurately and avoiding potentially costly penalties and fines. Since you are required to file with both your state and the IRS you should double check to insure the individual or organization that is helping your nonprofit is knowledgeable on both types of filings.
Help with the Legal Side
Much like the financial side of a nonprofit organization, there are many legal restrictions and stipulations that come with running a charity. Therefore, there will be a lot of hoops to jump through, specific documents, and even certifications that all need to be obtained before you can launch your nonprofit startup. While you can try to navigate these legal waters alone, it will be tough. In order to assure that you don’t make a costly or illegal mistake, it is best to hire legal help to represent your organization. Not only will this help be invaluable during the startup phase, but you’ll likely need assistance with future matters—therefore, this is a sound investment for the organization.
The nonprofit process can be very cumbersome, intimidating and overwhelming if you do not know exactly what you are doing or have not been through the process before. By asking for help you can spend less time stressing and focus on getting your nonprofit off the ground. Asking for nonprofit help and taking advantage of nonprofit resources during the startup phase will also insure that your organization gets off on the right foot and sets a solid foundation for future success.