2009 State of the Not-For-Profit Industry Survey Results | npENGAGE

2009 State of the Not-For-Profit Industry Survey Results

By on Nov 11, 2009


Blackbaud Europe has released the 2009 State of the Not-For-Profit Industry survey. Blackbaud teamed up with The Resource Alliance for the second year in a row to produce this pan-European benchmarking study. The results were unveiled at the International Fundraising Congress in the Netherlands.

SONI 2009 attracted over 648 completed survey entries from fundraising organisations in the United Kingdom, Germany, Holland, France and Italy. The results provide an overview to help not-for-profits benchmark their operations across five key areas:

  1. General operations (staffing levels, budgets, service delivery requirements and organisational challenges)
  2. Fundraising (top methods in terms of income and investment, increase or decrease for each fundraising method against the previous year and predictions for the next 12 months, and methods most commonly used to communicate with donors)
  3. Technology and Internet Usage (use of new media techniques and social networking, and database requirements)
  4. Accountability and Stewardship (looking at transparency of expenditure)
  5. Demographics

Key findings from SONI 2009 include:

  • Charities in France are most optimistic about income growth for this year against last year with 59% of charities in France expecting to see an increase in individual donations and 51% anticipating growth in total income
  • Charities in Germany reported the highest anticipated decrease in total income (44%) and charitable donations (36%)
  • Charities across the board are seeing the biggest decrease over the past year in investments (followed by corporate giving), with the UK reporting the most significant fall at 61% and only 10% reporting an increase.
  • All nations report an increased demand for services, with three quarters (73%) of UK charities and two thirds of respondents in France (66%) and Italy (65%) reporting this.
  • Major donor fundraising is the top driver for fundraising contributions in all nations except the Netherlands, where it is direct mail.
  • 86% of charities in France expect income from major giving to stay the same or increase this year, against last year
  • More than 40% of charities in the UK, Germany and the Netherlands don’t yet raise funds through email.
  • Charities in France (45%) and Italy (46%) are investing more heavily this year in fundraising staff, and in outsourcing, reporting 52% and 51% increase respectively in consultancy services..
  • Meanwhile, around twice as many charities in Germany expect to see a decrease in investment in direct mail and telemarketing as other nations at 13% and 14% (compared to a range of 2-10%)
  • Charities in France aren’t investing in their websites, 7% don’t have an online strategy or see it as a major income driver.
  • 56% of charities in Italy report increased demand for donations to be restricted (47% in Germany).
  • There is some optimism for income growth in 2010 with more than half of charities in the UK, France and Italy expecting an increase.
  • Charities in France are far and above the most optimistic nation for charitable donations growth, with 80% expecting an increase (against just 40% for UK and Germany).

A complete version of the 2009 State of the Not-For-Profit Industry survey will be posted online shortly.


Steve MacLaughlin is the Vice President of Data & Analytics at Blackbaud and bestselling author of Data Driven Nonprofits.

MacLaughlin has been featured as a fundraising and nonprofit expert in many mainstream publications, including The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Los Angeles Times, The Boston Globe, The Chronicle of Philanthropy, USA Today, The NonProfit Times, Stanford Social Innovation Review, Bloomberg, and has appeared on NPR.

He is a frequent speaker at events including the Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP), Association for Healthcare Philanthropy (AHP), American Marketing Association (AMA), Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE), Direct Marketing Fundraisers Association (DMFA), Giving Institute Summer Symposium, National Association of Independent School (NAIS), Nonprofit Technology Conference (NTC), Institute of Fundraising National Convention (United Kingdom), Civil Society Conference (Netherlands), International Fundraising Congress (Netherlands), Ask Direct Fundraising Summer School (Ireland), and a keynote speaker at several conferences across the social good sector.

Steve previously served on the Nonprofit Technology Network (NTEN) Board of Directors and is currently an adjunct faculty member at Columbia University.

He is a frequent blogger, published author of a chapter in the book People to People Fundraising: Social Networking and Web 2.0 for Charities, and is a co-editor of the book Internet Management for Nonprofits: Strategies, Tools & Trade Secrets. His latest book, Data Driven Nonprofits, became a bestseller in 2016.

Steve earned both his undergraduate degree and a Master of Science degree in Interactive Media from Indiana University.

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