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Zoom Works for Non-Profits Too!
September 18, 2014 by Zoom

dot orgNon-profit organizations are producing some of the largest humanitarian projects in the world. Accomplishing these things is no easy feat, especially considering the amount of money required to fuel these projects. This is true of any non-profit, even the smallest ones. When you look closely at some of these organizations, you may notice some areas where technology could make them more efficient, giving them more freedom to allocate revenue where it’s needed.

Ideally, a non-profit should not spend more on administration than it does on working towards its own goals. A respectable average allocation would be 30% administration and fundraising vs. 70% on program costs, but this varies widely depending on the type of non-profit and the nature of their work.

Cost control can be particularly difficult for those organizations that are employing a large number of staff and volunteers in different regions around the world. Right now, many businesses around the world are applying a new method of communication – cloud video conferencing – that ensures higher operating efficiencies. Similarly, non-profits can use video communications through Zoom to achieve this exact effect. Let’s see how:

volunteer groupOrganizing major activities is easier.

Do you notice a repeating theme? Efficiency in non-profits is paramount in their operation and public image. That means that you have to focus on reducing administrative costs without hurting the organization’s ability to perform its duties.

The moment you organize a march, a volunteer campaign, a viral video campaign (like the Ice Bucket Challenge), or a fundraiser, you can have your administrative staff informed of each of their roles and on task with a few clicks of your mouse. Since Zoom has basically no learning curve, your staff can learn to use the software easily and communicate with one another within minutes of deployment. So, you’ve got that taken care of and you didn’t even have to sweat. Then, there’s the fact that no one has to travel in order to meet. This reduces how much effort and capital has to be spent on visting satellite offices just to see how your staff is doing.

Zoom is an awesome PR tool.

Despite what people say about a business, there will always be customers to buy their products as long as those products are up to snuff. Many firms on Wall Street get loads of criticism and hate mail every day and they’re doing fine because they’re selling something people are willing to buy. In your line of work, you’re not really selling a product. Instead, people must give their money to you voluntarily knowing that it’s going to a proper cause. This right here could create a weakness. Criticism creates a deeper wound in your organization than it would in a run-of-the-mill shoe shop. If that criticism gains some traction, people might stop donating, and you’ll end up with a major crisis.

The best way to fix a crisis is to prevent it from happening at all. Zoom can help you do this easily. First of all, the fact that you’re using Zoom for internal communications makes it appropriate for you to announce that you’ve “gone green” because if you are an organization that previously traveled a lot, you have cut your carbon footprint significantly by Zooming instead. Also, in addition to Zooming with your staff, you can Zoom with the public through a Zoom Video Webinar. This will allow the outside world to enter a dialog with your organization. If you post the webinars on your website, everyone who visits will be able to see what questions were asked and how you handled them. This kind of transparency is respected.

Use Zoom in your programs.

Let’s construct a scenario: you’re responsible for all of the coordination of patient services in Doctors Without Borders. You want to give the doctors there access to specialists who can assess each patient’s individual needs. The problem is that it’s difficult to find specialists in the zones that the doctors are working in. To solve this issue, you give each doctor access to Zoom and a tablet. This way, doctors can communicate with each other while working on the field, establishing a tight network of specialists in an otherwise loose operation.

This is just one of many ways in which Zoom can be applied in a pragmatic manner. It not only connects you with administrative staff, but also makes the world just a little smaller for everyone working in your campaign. Zoom helps you put multiple heads together in projects that demand specialization when the specialists are working over a dispersed area.

donor Zoom meetingFundraising on Zoom.

Your business travel will often extend to making house calls on donors in far away places. Now imagine you can just open your laptop and Zoom with them instead. Your donor will appreciate your not spending their donation on your travel expenses. And Zoom is so much better than a simple phone call! Most communication is non-verbal. Don’t you want to see if your donor is furrowing their brows in disapproval or if they’re nodding approvingly? This could make or break your next big gift solicitation.

Finally, nothing warms a donor’s heart like the testimonial of a person their gift has helped. You could bring a recipient or client face-to-face with your donor from almost anywhere in the world, whether it be by inviting them to a live Zoom meeting with your donor or by making a Zoom recording of a testimonial with your recipient that can be played again and again.

Try it out!

Zoom can help power your non-profit in ways that we have yet to imagine. We can’t wait to see what you do with it! Go ahead and sign up for a free account.