My first post focused on the aspect of finding the problem and acting. This post will focus more on specific resources you can use.
The first and most obvious is to make sure everyone in your organization buys everything with a tax exempt letter. Brick and mortar and online retailers both accept tax exemptions. It only takes a few extra seconds but will save you a tremendous amount of money. Here in Tennessee, that’s ten percent of every purchase.
There are several ways to go about maximizing your NP IT dollars. When you need to buy software ALWAYS use techsoup.org first. This can save you thousands if not tens of thousands on your purchases. They do require some setup and proof of non profit but it’s well worth it. You can’t just openly buy at any time. It does require some planning. Our organization was purchasing $20,000 worth of office products for about $1200. Server software is a must here too. Purchase all of your licensing here as well as SQL server licenses. There are several other companies that offer discounts but none that I’ve seen to the level of TechSoup.
Hardware was always the most difficult budget item to get funded. Boards and leadership teams want to squeeze every once ounce out of hardware no matter the cost it seems sometimes. Unfortunately there’s no TechSoup for hardware. Don’t get me wrong, TechSoup does offer some nice deals on hardware. Nothing that can compare to the software they provide though. Connectall.org is another organization helping non profits find good equipment.
There are several companies you can work with to find new tech toys. Tigerdirect sells really good used servers. Dell gives a decent discount on servers to non profits. They offer financing for those who qualify as well. Connectall.org is another organization helping non profits find good equipment.
My last suggestion is to talk to big companies in your area. Especially companies that already support you. Maybe someone on your board is about to replace their computers. They get a tax write off and you get new computers or servers or switches. Typically companies will donate the computers sans the hard drives. Purchasing hard drives is much cheaper than the entire unit.
If you are new to the non profit industry or would like more info, feel free to reach out. if you don’t have time to go through these processes, contact us at email@example.com.
My next few blogs will cover Digital Marketing at a Discount or Free for Non Profits and how to sell your board on IT.