Latest Articles & Reports

  • May 2011
     Volunteer-based organizations have to keep track of a lot of data—for example, contact info, schedules, time sheets and job sites—and the right software can help, freeing time for managing volunteers. There are a number of products out there to help, but it’s surprisingly hard to find information about them.  This report is geared to remedy that!
  • By Laura Quinn,
    May 2011
    Staff training and development can pay dividends for any organization, but because of the cost and logistics involved, they're often overlooked or ignored. Traveling to offsite trainings and conferences is expensive, and the nature of today's geographically-diverse staffs can make onsite training a challenge. Technology can overcome many of these difficulties in many cases, without significant expense. A number of viable methods for professional development online make it likely your organization can find one that works.
  • By Colin Pizarek and Molly Ahern,
    April 2011
    How does mobile giving work?  Is it likely to be useful for your organization?
  • By Laura S. Quinn and Kyle Andrei,
    April 2011
    Web analytics tools help you track your site’s statistics, which let you see how many people are looking at each page, what sites they came from, and other information to help develop a picture of who your audience is. But which web analytics tool should you use?
  • By Laura S. Quinn and Jay Leslie,
    April 2011
    If thoughts of detailed client histories and reports to funders make you break out in a cold sweat, it may be time to consider the many good case management tools that will help you track demographics, interactions, scheduling, billing information, and more. In this update of our 2009 article, we summarize what tools case management experts would recommend.
  • March 2011
      Without an effective system to track donors and other constituents, you can spend too much time just trying to figure out who to contact and miss out on many fundraising opportunities. But switching to a new system can be time consuming and sometimes costly. So how do you know if you should switch, or stick with what you have?
  • By Chris Bernard, Senior Editor,
    March 2011
    Can software help your board collaborate more effectively?  It likely can -- potentially, anything from scheduling meetings to share documents or even to meet online.  This Idealware article was written for the inaugural issue of NTEN: Change, the new quarterly publication of the NTEN. Thanks to NTEN for their support.
  • By Eric Leland,
    February 2011
    Online surveys can be a huge help in understanding what your constituents think and how successful your programs are, without breaking your budget. Last year we spoke to five nonprofit staff members to understand how existing online survey tools compare—this is an update of that article with current information about the tools’ features and pricing.
  • December 2010
    FULLY REVISED IN DECEMBER 2010!  We've taken our popular 2009 report comparing four free and open source systems -- WordPress, Joomla, Drupal, and Plone -- that can help you to build and manage a website, and completely updated it to the newest versions of the systems. We provide both a feature summary and detailed reviews, as well as a directory of consultants. 
  • By Chris Bernard,
    December 2010
    There's a lot of talk these days about privacy issues on Facebook.  What does that mean for you as an organization?  The issues for an organization are different than those facing an individual—but still absolutely something you should be thinking about.  This article was funded through the Idealware Research Fund, with the support of people like you.  Thank you!