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Nonprofit Data for Beginners

February 15, 2018 @ 1:00 pm - 2:30 pm

Three 90-minute webinars, Thursdays February 8, 15, and 22.

To make smart decisions about the future of your organization, you need a clear understanding of your organization’s activities and the outcomes they achieve. But where can you find the data and how do you make sense of it all? Nonprofit Data for Beginners, presented in partnership with Idealware, is a three-week course that will show you how to ask important questions, find the right data, and use the information to strengthen your organization.

Regular Cost: $120

WVNPA Member Cost: $95 (email for the discount code)


The term “big data” gets used (and misused) a lot, making it seem scary and expensive. But bigger isn’t always better. Gathering the right data—and knowing how to use it—is what matters.

Join us for Nonprofit Data for Beginners, a three-week course designed to help you ask the right questions, find the data you need, and use your data to strengthen your organization.

Through participation in this course, you will:

  • Consider what questions you need your data to answer.
  • Learn how to define your goals and develop processes for collecting your data.
  • Explore the many places where you can find useful data.
  • Learn how to manage your metrics and data so that they remain useful over the long term.
  • Dive into case studies of real organizations using data to make decisions.

Toolkit Schedule:

All sessions take place Wednesday at 1 pm Eastern and last for 90 minutes.

February 8: Asking the Right Questions
Simply collecting data is not enough. Deciding early on what you will do with that data—and why you want it in the first place—will help you to define goals and approaches. We’ll talk through how to define your organization’s own data-based metrics strategy from the ground up.

February 15: Hunting Down the Data
More often than not, the most useful data won’t be found already neatly laid out in a spreadsheet. You might find extremely valuable data in handwritten staff notes, in multiple software systems, or public repositories. We’ll discuss where different data can live, which sources of data might be useful, and where and how you can collect it to be ready for analysis.

February 22: Making Use of Your Data
In the final course, we will discuss the various ways you will need to manage and use the data you’ve collected. We’ll consider the logistics of entering, storing, and maintaining your data. We’ll also look at how to develop an action plan that ensures your data program is useful and sustainable.

Other Info:

Participants will also be given weekly “homework” assignments.

Please register with the email address where you would like to receive the access code and dial-in information for the online seminar. All registered participants are granted access to the recordings of each session. Participants who cannot attend any of the sessions due to scheduling conflicts will still have access to the toolkit presentation decks and handout


February 15, 2018
1:00 pm - 2:30 pm
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