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Improving Efficiency in a Nonprofit



Sam wanted Joanna to analyze his Donor Services Department, because he'd received complaints about its efficiency. Since he'd been told that his office needed to double in size, he wanted to get all the bugs worked out beforehand. Joanna agreed to gather information and compile a report. The work of a Donor Services Department consists of translating letters, preparing progress reports, and answering donor questions. It handles the paperwork associated with enrolling new families, reassignments, and special gifts. Having accurate enrollment figures is crucial because the money received is based upon these figures. There is a significant level of conflict which reduces efficiency and effectiveness in the Donor Services Department.


1. What is the main issue in this case?
2. How can the Donor Service Department become more effective?
3. Describe intergroup conflict in the Donor Service Department?
4. How could empowerment change the situation at the Donor Service Department?

Solution Preview

The main issue in the Donor Services Department is one of reduced efficiency and
productivity. while conflict is a cause of this challenge, the end result is a department that does
not run as smoothly as it can and is not as productive as it should be. Efficiency and productivity
are important. However, accuracy is also crucial, as funding relies on the number of
enrollments. Those who track enrollments and document the processes must be able to produce
high quality work that is accurate and do so in a timely manner, so that numbers remain current.

Regardless of why the conflict exists, it reduces the effectiveness of a department and the
friction of conflict can lead to distractions and errors. To reduce conflict, the department must
develop a program that involves all staff, to address the conflict issues. To do this, Joanna must
first find out why the conflict exists, so she can provide an accurate assessment of the situation
and make recommendations that address the specific issues. To conduct a ...

Solution Summary

This analysis looks at the various challenges a specific nonprofit agency faces. It addresses the issues of conflict and the issue of inefficiency, with viable solutions for each challenge.