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The best project management software for nonprofits 8 min read
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When running a nonprofit, you need to wear many hats and operate in many ways, from task management to team member champion.

You’re responsible for fundraising to fulfill your organizational mission and sustain the nonprofit while also carrying out any services and programs you offer. When you’re short on staff and resources — like many nonprofits — you need to find a way to effectively manage your projects and tasks. After all, you owe it to your donors and the people you serve.

An easy way to accomplish this is by investing in project management software for nonprofits. While this might seem like a big investment, it will pay off in the long run. In this article, we’ll show you exactly how to use Work OS as a project management tool that takes you beyond scheduling meetings or sharing files in Google Drive.

What is project management software for nonprofits?

Project management software for nonprofits is a platform or tool that helps staff keep a bird’s eye view of all the tasks, deadlines, and outcomes in your organization.

Any organization can benefit from project management software — in fact, 78% of organizations believe people increasingly need project management skills — but in busy nonprofits with small teams, it’s critical for staying organized and working efficiently. project management software template

The best project management software for nonprofits is customizable to allow you to manage donors, run fundraising campaigns, and plan events and programs, all with real-time updates. You’ll also be able to glean data-driven insights via customizable dashboards and reports to help you track your successes, apply for grants, and more.

5 benefits of project management software for nonprofits

Let’s take a closer look at the benefits of project management software for nonprofits.

1. High-quality data and reporting

Whether you’re writing a grant, creating a fundraising appeal to donors, or assessing the effectiveness of your programs, accurate data is a huge asset to your nonprofit work.

Project management software helps you track the data you need and make sure everyone who needs it can access it. You’ll be able to find some aspects of this in free versions of platforms, while some even offer free project management for nonprofits and NGOs.

2. Increased efficiency

By automating tasks, deadlines, and follow-ups, you and your team can reduce the time spent on manual tasks and make sure nothing falls through the cracks.

Consider that 54% of leaders don’t have access to real-time KPIs, and a third of them spend a day or more manually collating data. With project management software, you solve both problems with one solution.

3. Improved productivity

When you track everything in a single project management solution, everyone knows what they need to do and where to find the resources they need. That means your staff gets more done in less time. gantt chart project management template

4. Reduced costs

When you’re improving efficiency and productivity at every turn, it’s easy to reduce overhead costs and allocate more money and resources to the people you serve or the users per month in your organization.

5. Better organizational outcomes

Project management software helps you and your staff use resources more effectively, leading to better outcomes across the board.

Your donors will see their contributions at work while your staff gets to engage in more of the work they joined your organization to do. And, of course, you’ll get to help more people in line with your nonprofit mission.

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3 use cases for nonprofit project management software

You can create custom project management software on that does virtually anything your organization needs to do — even the processes that are specific to the nonprofit industry.

Here are three nonprofit situations where project management software can make a big difference.

1. Donor management

Donors are the lifeblood of any nonprofit organization. It’s critical to maintain detailed records of your donors and their contact information like email addresses so they can continue to support your work.

With’s Work OS, you can adapt the contact database template for donor management. contact database template

You can even segment donors by the donation level, type of donor, or any other categories that make sense for you. Then track all your communications with each donor and send targeted emails asking for donations, promoting events, or updating donors on your organization’s progress.

You can also expand your contact database to help with volunteer management — no need for a separate tool.

2. Event and fundraiser planning

When you’re running a large event or fundraiser, there are a lot of moving parts. Nonprofit project management software helps you track every element of any event you run.

You can use a Gantt chart view to create and share a complete view of everything that needs to get done for every event. This ranges from coordinating logistics to following up with attendees after the event has concluded. Use our free plan or level up to the next tier, which most platforms called the business plan to access even more robust features. event dashboard template

With, you can also create event dashboards that track planning progress, budget limits, and funds raised to date.

3. Grant management

Grant application processes are often long and complicated, requiring strict deadlines and multiple collaborators to produce a complete application. helps you set deadlines and assign tasks for each stakeholder in your grant application. Then, schedule automatic follow-ups that send reminders to the assignee’s Slack, email, or other channels. It also includes file sharing and collaboration features that will keep track of the most updated documents. digital asset management template

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5 features to look for in project management software for nonprofits

It’s clear that project management software is a must for nonprofits, but not all software is going to meet your needs.

When searching for the right project management solution for your organization, look for these 5 features.

1. User-friendly interface

It’s important to find a project management software that’s easy to learn and understand for anyone coming into your organization, whether that’s new employees, volunteers, or board members.

When you don’t have to spend extra time learning or teaching others how to use your new software, you can be more productive right away. Volunteers and employees can get right to work on your organization’s mission, no matter their age or technical background.

2. Customizable templates

Because no two nonprofits run the same way, you’ll want a project management software that has the flexibility to create the exact tools you need to fulfill your organization’s mission — and grow and adapt with you.

On, you can choose from dozens of fully customizable templates to get you started on a variety of project types. template center

You can customize views, including Gantt charts and Kanban boards, as well as create custom columns, labels, and colors. You can adjust any template to perform exactly as you need it to.

3. Workflow automation

To work efficiently in your nonprofit organization, look for project management software with workflow automation tools.

On, you can set automations to help with various manual tasks, from creating recurring assignments to sending donor follow-ups and more. Workflow automation takes care of tedious tasks, allowing you to spend time on more important work.

Plus, workflow automation and other artificial intelligence tools are likely to come your way soon. 85% of CEOs say AI will radically change how organizations work in the next 5 years, but why wait to reap the benefits?

4. Reporting dashboards

Data is critical for any nonprofit, helping you measure your fundraising progress, event success, and program effectiveness.

To keep donors, board members, and staff on the same page with critical organizational information, make sure your project management software includes customizable reporting dashboards that serve as a single source of truth for your nonprofit. reporting dashboard template

With, you can even create separate dashboards with permission levels depending on the access different groups need. It’s an easy way to stay accountable and share your progress without oversharing confidential data.

5. Tool integrations

To make your nonprofit workflows even smoother, use a project management software that integrates with any other collaboration and reporting tools you already use.

You can connect tools like Slack, Dropbox, Salesforce, and more in the Work OS to create a single interface where you can complete the majority of your work.

If you use a tool that doesn’t have a direct integration, you can build your own connections through Zapier.

Do more at your nonprofit with Work OS

Nonprofit organizations need project management software as much as any other organization — maybe even more.

With the platform, you can build a project management solution that’s perfectly customized to your nonprofit, whether you need donor management, event planning, grant management, or all of the above.

Contact today to see if your organization qualifies for a nonprofit discount.

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