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  • Michael Lucivero

Challenges facing the nonprofit sector in 2020

Updated: Jan 21, 2020

What challenges can nonprofit organizations expect to confront as 2020 dawns? As a consultant, I like solving problems and coming up with answers for clients, but predicting the future is a little beyond my talents. Therefore, to start off this year, I thought it would be helpful to share what others were predicting for the nonprofit sector in the coming year.

The Chronicle of Philanthropy looked trends that affected nonprofits in 2019, and what they might signal for 2020. Among the topics discussed are increasing calls for ethics in fundraising, improving diversity and salaries at nonprofits and the role of artificial intelligence in fundraising.

Looking at the twelve most read stories by readers of The NonProfit Times in 2019 offers some insight into what might ripple through the nonprofit world in 2020. Some of the recommended articles concern how fundraising and donor number continue to decline, as well as the effect of increased regulatory scrutiny on nonprofits.

A roundtable of nonprofit leaders forecast nine challenges facing the sector in 2020. How will nonprofits fill service gaps not sufficiently covered by government programs—which includes mental health, personal health, the environment, housing and social justice or others? The roundtable also recommend that nonprofits prioritize improve management by boosting talent retention and improving collaboration and resource-sharing with other organizations.

On the technology front, BizTech Magazine expects nonprofits to continue to integrate new technological advances to benefit fundraising—whether they incorporate advanced CRM tools, automate tasks to enable more efficient operations or utilize artificial intelligence for donor communications. Nonprofits are also counseled to prioritize cybersecurity updates and assess how they can shift toward mobile-first fundraising.

I hope these predictions provide valuable food for thought about challenges nonprofits may face in order to achieve their mission in 2020. Good luck in the coming year!

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