In the age of Internet search engines, what could be simpler than typing in the services your nonprofit needs and combing the results? The problem is, with traditional search engines, the results can be overwhelming or biased toward those that appear on the first page. Worse, what you’re really looking for may not be there at all or buried so far down the list that you never see it. And then there’s the issue of quality. When it comes to consultants and other service providers that appear, what would their clients say about them?
All due respect to Bing, Google, and others, there’s a better way to find nonprofit resources and referrals, especially here in Washington State. 501 Commons’ Statewide Nonprofit Resource Directory takes the hunt for nonprofit help to a whole new level with a nonprofit topic-based search tool and webpages specific to nonprofit issues. We also require that listed providers who offer consulting services or products have at least three years experience serving nonprofits and come recommended by at least three nonprofit clients. And we do reference checks to ensure this standard.
In future posts, I’ll describe the carefully curated resources and original content you can find through the Directory. Today, though, the focus is on the many types of nonprofit specialists who are listed…that is, approved, then listed:
- Consultants and consulting firms, like fundraisers and accountants
- Other providers/companies, such as graphic designers and technology services
- Nonprofit capacity-building organizations
- Associations, networks, and volunteer centers
- Educational programs and resource centers
So the next time you’re looking for help from experienced, skilled, and recommended service providers – or seeking valuable online resources – start with the Directory. Better yet, bookmark it now and jot down my contact info (firstname.lastname@example.org, 206-682-6704) in case you still have questions.
We all know that time is precious and time is money. Here’s to quick and successful searches!
- Matt Fikejs, Information & Referral Program Manager