Dancing With the Stats

Sections of this topic

    Tracking the statistics for a non-profit is an important part of fulfilling accountability measures of funders. Every non-profit should have a statistics gathering strategy. This will ensure that data is gathered accurately and becomes a part of the regular activities of your non-profit.

    Your statistics gathering strategy should include:

    • Who will do it – It should describe specifically who in the organization will be responsible for day to day statistics gathering for each program and service and who will be responsible for compiling the overall statistics for the organization. Be sure to include this task in the appropriate staffs’ job description.
    • When it will be done – Deciding on when statistics will be gathered is an important part of ensuring consistent handling of data. You may want to set daily, monthly, quarterly and yearly deadlines for statistic submissions.
    • How to gather the data – The strategy should outline what tools will be used to gather and manage the statistical data. It should include copies of the tools that are going to be used, such as a template.
    • How the data will be used – Spelling out exactly how the data can be used is important. Once you have decided how you will use the data, be sure to draft a policy to guide the use of this data. This ensures that all staff are aware of acceptable use of organizational statistical data.
    • Where the data will be stored – There are decisions that must be made such as will the data be stored solely electronically, or will the organization prepare a yearly report that provides the statistical data from that fiscal year, so that it can be shared with funders or potential funders in hard copy.


    For more resources, see our Library topic Nonprofit Capacity Building.