Today’s non-profit world faces numerous operational and strategic challenges. SCNO provides services in these six areas:
Franciscan Ministries Case Study
The Franciscan Ministries is dedicated to providing affordable housing for low-income families, independent elderly individuals, and residents with special needs. With over 20 properties in four states, Franciscan Ministries provides a range of services from wellness clinics to legal assistance to its residents.
In 2012, a huge storm hit one Franciscan Ministries’ properties in Aurora, IL, ripping the roof from a portion of the building resulting in damage to 25% of the resident apartments. After the event, it became evident that a process was needed for disaster and crisis recovery; specifically one that addressed the immediate needs of residents that faced displacement as a result of this emergency. Franciscan Ministries came to SCNO to create a systematic procedure to follow in an emergency situation that would effectively outline response time and responsibilities.
SCNO designed an Emergency Response Toolkit that outlined short-term, mid-term, and long-term response protocols for any emergency situation, assigned specific roles and responsibilities of each administrator, as well as researched best practices and resources for resettling displaced tenants and meeting their needs in times of crisis. This response toolkit included four components.
• The Emergency Response Protocol outlined the procedure to cope with emergency situations across three stages: short term (first 48 hours after emergency), mid term (first two weeks after emergency) and long term (after two weeks). Within each stage, different roles are assigned with varying tasks to facilitate communication, recovery, and relocation.
• The RACI Matrix & Response Timesheet was a list of tasks that needed to be completed and noted with staff involvement information, including who should be responsible, accountable, counseled, and informed in each situation.
• Competitor Interview Summary highlighted the emergency response plans of similar organizations and best practices that Franciscan Ministries could adopt.
• Resources Research provided Franciscan Ministries with potential resources to deploy in case of emergency. Insurance Research included information on resident and property insurance programs from different insurance companies, while relocation research contained information on NGOs, churches and other local support sources that Franciscan Ministries could reach out to for assistance in case of emergency.
Overall, SCNO created an organized and systematic protocol to cope with emergency situations. Using the step-by-step instructions in combination with the RACI matrix, SCNO was able to effectively assign responsibilities and actions such that response time decreased and emergency relief support increased.
Anixter Center Case Study
Anixter Center is a Chicago-based nonprofit that provides an array of services to help people with disabilities live, learn, work and play in the community. Anixter Center serves over 10,000 individuals across greater Chicago with services ranging from day programming for adults, to job placement, to social services and advocacy for people who are deaf or hard of hearing.
Anixter Center approached SCNO in 2011 with the goal of increasing brand recognition and visibility in greater Chicago by leveraging its existing internal resources and capabilities.
SCNO found that to increase external recognition of the Anixter Center brand, Anixter Center needed to build internal capacity by better utilizing volunteers, through whom it might effectively implement an external outreach strategy. SCNO proposed these changes:
• Create formal volunteer placement and evaluation procedures to better manage the volunteer experience.
• Collaborate with two volunteers to establish the structure for a volunteer outreach board—identifying roles and responsibilities as well as board recruitment strategies.
• Utilize donor data to identify high-net-worth demographic areas for targeted community outreach.
• Create an “outreach kit” of communication strategies for volunteers and staff to implement when introducing Anixter Center to new constituencies.
• Create a monthly newsletter template to keep stakeholders engaged while promoting outreach and involvement.
• Create short- and long-term social media strategies to keep stakeholders apprised of agency updates.
Metrics and Data Analysis
• Set up web analytics on the Anixter Center website to measure activity and click-through patterns.
• Set up a metrics-based evaluation system for volunteer, donor, social media and community partner activity.
The cyclical process of outreach, metrics-based feedback, and improvement in programming will help Anixter Center grow as it continually refines its external outreach program in years ahead.