Business Intelligence for Your Nonprofit Organization

Business Intelligence for Your Nonprofit Organization
Over the past several years, Big Data, Data Analytics and Data Visualization have become some of the noisiest buzzwords in the nonprofit lexicon. Data, analytics, and reporting together form the basis of business intelligence, and while many nonprofits are developing core competencies in one or the other of these key functions, it takes a true organization-wide commitment and approach to achieve the benefits of business intelligence and data-driven decision making. Confused about how all of this fits together and makes up business intelligence? This graphic should help:

Business Intelligence WealthEngine

Wealthengine recently did some research that shows there are five distinct stages of nonprofit data maturity, from oblivious, through aware, emerging, and investing to optimizing. Based on that study, they came up with five key areas that differentiate from those who are practicing data-informed decision making from those who are less data-informed:


Data informed organizations are more likely to enrich their data with appended data from a variety of sources, including screening data, subscription data, internet sources, analytics, surveys, and others.

Technical Support

Optimizing organizations are by far more satisfied with the technical support they receive than are oblivious organizations.

Technical Planning

Optimizing organizations have a well-crafted technology strategic plan, while oblivious organizations have no technology strategic plan and have not included technology in any strategic planning.


Mature organizations are more likely to have real-time dashboard reporting, while those lowest on the maturity scale indicated they are “too busy to pull reports.


High maturity organizations are much more likely to have an individual or department dedicated to analytics than lower maturity organizations.

Read Wealthengine’s full post for more details including their survey numbers and reasons why 2014 promises to be the year that many of the Business Intelligence puzzle pieces come together for nonprofits over on their blog.


The Connected Cause is a place for experts in the nonprofit online space to share perspective, offer guidance and promote best practices for using today’s technology effectively. Our goal is to provide a comprehensive source of collaborative thought leadership for the nonprofit industry.


  1. Susan Kenna Wright

    At Room to Read we knew that “what gets measured, gets done” ~ it is a very data driven organization. I’m always excited to see organizations use data for smarter decisions and more effective work.

  2. Interesting points–I could not find anything deeper on their website about methods, results, and conclusions. I’d like to read more–as we all know the devil is in the details!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *