Creating a Nonprofit Strategic Plan

Access our free nonprofit strategic plan template to help shape your organization’s future with key steps and ideas.

A nonprofit strategic plan is critical to the success of a nonprofit organization. It provides a roadmap that outlines your organization’s goals, objectives, strategies, and actions for achieving its mission.

The purpose of a nonprofit strategic plan is to provide a clear direction for the organization’s activities and resources over a defined period, usually one to five years. But creating a strategic plan for your nonprofit can be tricky. Where do you start, and what strategies and actions do you consider? 

No matter whether you’re about to start out or are stuck in the process, we have a free nonprofit strategic plan template to help you through this process with the utmost effectiveness.

The Significance Of A Nonprofit Strategic Plan & How To Create One

So before you use our free template to create a strategic plan that works for your nonprofit, it is important to understand all the reasons why you need it in the first place. 

  • A nonprofit strategic plan provides focus and direction to the organization by defining its mission, vision, values, goals, and strategies.
  • It ensures that all stakeholders, including staff, volunteers, donors, and partners, are aligned and working towards a common purpose.
  • By prioritizing goals and strategies, the organization will be able to allocate its resources where they will have the greatest impact.
  • A nonprofit strategic plan helps ensure that staff, volunteers, and board members understand their role in achieving the organization’s mission.
  • This plan allows the organization to be more adaptable to changes such as shifts in funding priorities, public policy, world economy, or in the needs of the community. 
  • A nonprofit strategic plan helps ensure the long-term sustainability of the organization by providing a roadmap for growth and development. 
  • It allows the organization to plan for the future, identify potential risks and challenges, and develop strategies to address them.

You can see how essential a strategic plan is to your nonprofit organization, and how it helps streamline various key areas within it. With the ever-changing dynamics of the world, your organization cannot create sustainable growth without a well-devised strategic plan. 

Here are some vital steps you should take to create a nonprofit strategic plan that works for you:

  • Gather information about the organization’s mission, vision, values, history, programs, stakeholders, and external environment. This step may also involve conducting a SWOT analysis to assess the organization’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats. 
  • Develop specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound (SMART) goals for your organization. These goals should be aligned with the organization’s mission, vision, and values.
  • Create action plans and strategies, and describe clear KPIs that will enable the organization to achieve its goals. 
  • List the people who are responsible for carrying out the steps decided in the previous step and make sure they clearly understand their roles and responsibilities.
  • Create budget projections if any of your tasks include fundraising or have a significant cost outside of your normal budget.
  • Implement the strategies and action plans, and continue to monitor progress.
  • Collect data, analyze outcomes, and make adjustments to your plan as necessary.

With our free strategic plan template that includes a clear outline for the above steps, you will be successfully creating future strategies and plans for your organization. And if you need more help regarding finances, accounting, board member responsibilities, KPI details, metrics, and more, our Nonprofit Blog is the ultimate hub of everything nonprofit. 

Give our blog on creating a strategic fundraising plan a read for detailed insights into the topic.

In just about 19 minutes, you can learn the top tips and tactics of nonprofit strategic planning with Tim Ardillo, a Senior Consultant at Johnson, Grossnickle and Associates (JGA), and Cara Augspurger, our very own nonprofit expert, on The Nonprofit Podcast.

About Donorbox

Donorbox aims to provide nonprofits with simple, effective tools to manage their fundraising activities, form better relationships with their donors, and build sustainable growth for their organization.

As one of the industry’s top fundraising platforms, Donorbox offers a variety of products, including donate buttons, embedded fundraising forms, custom fundraising pages, Text-to-Give, Peer-to-Peer, crowdfunding campaigns & more.

Donorbox is free to sign up, with no contracts and no montly fees. Along with the lowest processing fees in the industry, we have all the tools you'll ever need to get your mission from start to sustainability to success!