Not for profit organisations were not immune to the COVID-19 pandemic. The ability for organisations to ‘pivot’ and review existing strategies and plans has become more important than ever.

While not-for-profit organisations are generally “for the greater good”, or for the good of their membership, it is still a competitive marketplace, especially in competing for discretionary spend of individuals and organisations. A successful strategic planning process identifies strategies that will best enable a not for profit to meet its mission.

With strategy being top of mind for many NFP leaders right now, we asked them together with members of HLB Mann Judd Sydney’s Exclusive Not for Profit (ENFP) Community to respond to a survey on strategic planning. The results of which are presented in this report.

Several key findings

  • 41% of respondents stated that they had a business model with sensitivities. 

  • Most organisations have a strategic plan which has been reviewed recently and is monitored appropriately, however there appears to be a lack of clarity around strategic positioning (i.e. Where the organisation is competing and How the organisation differentiates itself against its competition) which leads to general confusion of competitive advantage;
  • There is an overall level of concern around managing finance, as this is one of the most significant focus areas for organisations. 60% of organisations do not have a business model with sensitivities, therefore are unable to stress test the strategic plan;
  • A third of responders were not sure what their organisation’s level of investment into the strategic plan is; and
  • People recruitment and retention (i.e. employees) appears to be a lower area of focus. This is intriguing as staff shortages are impacting many organisations.