Nonprofit Customer Panel: How to Operate Collaboratively in Today’s Ever-Changing Environment and Economy as a Nonprofit Agency

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Nonprofit Customer Panel: How to Operate Collaboratively in Today’s Ever-Changing Environment and Economy as a Nonprofit Agency 

This panel will focus on some of the key themes within the industry, including best practices for operating with limited resources, key metrics for measuring efficiency in a nonprofit environment, and reacting to changes within each organization's sphere of influence as they face the challenges related to COVID-19. 

Speakers:

  • Stephanie Wilson, Project Manager, Collections and Interpretation, Georgia O’Keeffe Museum
  • Ryan Nelson, Controller, Entrust Disability Services
  • Marcus Manderson, Supervisor of Audiovisual Operations, National Geographic Society
  • Panel Leader: Renee Thomas, Regional Head of Customer Success, Wrike

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Chelsea Pasquale Community Team at Wrike Erfahren Sie mehr über Wrikes leistungsstarke Funktionen und lernen Sie Anwendungsbeispiele kennen

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So nothing is live?  It is all asynchronous?

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There will be a live Q&A afterwards. 

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where do we go to hear the speaker live?

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In the auditorium once you log in. 

 

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The Live Q&A will take place immediately after the presentations. 

 

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Roxanne Baker In the auditorium there will be a link to join the live Q&A the one for this session will open just before 11:00. 

 

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We had so many great questions in our Live Q&A that we didn't have time to answer. Over the next few days I'll be adding some of the questions from our audience. We'd love to hear the insights from our panelists as well as other Wrike non-profit organizations! 

 

Audience Question: There are so many different communication tools that we all have to use now. How did you get buy-in initially with Wrike? Our team struggles with “Another new thing to learn."

Renee Thomas Community Team at Wrike Erfahren Sie mehr über Wrikes leistungsstarke Funktionen und lernen Sie Anwendungsbeispiele kennen

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Different tools are good for different things. I think a good place to start is to really look at the different tools that are being used and start to ask, "Can this do more then one thing." One of the ways that we started to convert people over was when we received a message, task, or any other communication that could be discussed more effectively somewhere else, we just moved it there. For example, an email thread started where people started sharing opinions on a topic, one person would move it to Teams include everyone that was in the email and continued the discussion. Eventually, opinion emails stopped coming and the discussions then started in Teams. Same thing with tasks that came in by email. We would just use the Outlook Addin for Wrike, convert them to tasks in Wrike then tagged those that needed to know that the email was moved to Wrike and that conversations would only happen in Wrike. With the help of a task request form tasks that needed to get done just end up in Wrike. 

Hope that helps.

-Ryan

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I agree with Ryan; take an assessment of the tools you are currently using. For us, Wrike was a tool and platform that could at least replace 1 other tool we were using. That was great to begin with. What ended up being even better was Wrike ended up replacing more than 1 tool. 

When the new tool can replace 2 or more other tools, that can help offset the "Another new thing to learn" struggles. 

 

😊

 

--

Marcus 

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Good morning everyone! Hope you are enjoying Collaborate Day 2! I have another great question to share from yesterday's session - please let us know your thoughts! 

 

"What are some different ways you have been able to measure efficiency gains among your team members since migrating to Wrike?"

Renee Thomas Community Team at Wrike Erfahren Sie mehr über Wrikes leistungsstarke Funktionen und lernen Sie Anwendungsbeispiele kennen

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Great question. It is hard to find efficiency gains that can be measured by a typical spreadsheet or report. However; one metric that we have seen with using Wrike is that all that use it, just get more done in a day. One constant result from our team is that everyone can do more in an 8 hour day then they were able to do before. The ability to have a single source of truth with everything that we do helps drive productivity. Having someone's perceived work load increase because of efficiency is a huge measurement. If you have people on your team say, " I can take on more" and others on the team notice that more work is getting done faster by people using Wrike then not, will be a metric that is noticeable by all without having to look at spreadsheets, or reports. 

Hope that helps.

-Ryan

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Audience Question: There are so many different communication tools that we all have to use now. How did you get buy-in initially with Wrike? Our team struggles with “Another new thing to learn."

When I started at the O’Keeffe, my supervisor was so eager to have a dedicated person to build out the team’s project management and systems that he wanted to try a lot of tools that previously hadn’t been successful with the power of suggestion and hoping the team would “try and buy.” We had Wrike, Google Drive, Dropbox, a shared folder on the server, an intranet, Slack, Microsoft Teams, Outlook, and more! After spending some time building in-person relationships with my team members, I determined that we needed to focus on building our foundation: Outlook for emails, Wrike for project management (and ideally most project communication), Dropbox for all files, and in-person bi-weekly meetings, because communication (in-person or now in Zoom) is critical for building a team culture and clarifying communications. I also kindly asked my supervisor to stop checking out new tools because the team was overloaded.

On the backend, I build out our custom workflows in Wrike and establish new folder structures for organizing work. I made sure that all of our folder structures in Wrike mirrored what was in Dropbox. I set up Dropbox smart syncing for easy folder navigation and file changes. I ensured our folders were Team Shares in Dropbox so that I had the power to organize folders and information appropriately. I then used Zapier to automatically create folders of projects created in Wrike in Dropbox to reduce duplicate work.

That said, it took about a year to get the team accustomed to all of this! Not only where to put information, but how to use the tools and use them consistently! I did a lot of one-on-one trainings and guided walkthroughs. I created a document table of contents (DOC-TOC) with links so that team members could click on the link to the right projects and folders in Wrike and Dropbox.

Finally, I made Wrike the source of truth. If my team wanted to know exhibition dates, they had to go to Wrike. If they couldn’t remember where to find an associated Dropbox folder for a project, they could find the folder link in Wrike. If they wanted to see the agenda, subsequent notes, and resulting action items for team meetings, Wrike was their friend. I adapted my approach to the needs of my small team – some needed to be sent Wrike blog posts to learn and others needed someone sitting next to them for an hour. I recognize that I was lucky to have a small enough team to dedicate such time. Now with 5 times the number of people at the O’Keeffe on Wrike, I have to tailor the experience differently, sometimes group trainings and sometimes one-on-one. But the continued success of building buy-in has been tailoring the system for the needs of my people. I don’t want them stressed out about how to make Wrike work for them. I want them to focus on how Wrike can automate tasks, build accountability, and keep them from waking up in the middle of the night because they forgot something. Wrike helps my teams focus on the content and I have a ton of fun building out the system so my people don’t have to worry about it so much. I teach people more advanced technics as their competency builds.

Wrike is so robust (it’s awesome!!) that it can overwhelm people. My team needed someone to just say, “Hey, this is where you put this information.” I think that’s the key, patient training and clear direction for use.

Hope this helps!

Stephanie

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Audience Question: "What are some different ways you have been able to measure efficiency gains among your team members since migrating to Wrike?"

I agree with Ryan, especially in nonprofits, it can be hard to define efficiency gains, beyond attendees to public programs (which I have a Wrike report for!). A great book on this is Jim Collins’ Good to Great and the Social Sectors: Why Business Thinking is Not the Answer. Like Ryan, I see the gains in work accomplished, but also in overall morale, this almost smug satisfaction that we are indeed working smarter not harder. It’s this feeling that by using a blueprint, of which we have MANY, my team members don’t have to expend mental capacity remembering the sequence of tasks to do a project again and again. We have blueprints with 20 to 100+ tasks for exhibitions, loans, onboarding new employees/interns/research fellows, acquisitions, grants, public programs, and so much more. That’s A LOT of time saved remembering and rehearsing the motions!

To dive a little bit more specifically… A few years ago we were working on an Institute of Museum and Library Services grant to build a digital infrastructure for a new, relationship-driven Collections Online that required time tracking for our grant required cost share. I definitely had to bug people to track their time (it was in the first year of the team really using Wrike), but after 1.5 years of grant work, we had tracked 1,123 hours. The fact that my team was not only doing that grant work but also logging into Wrike to document that work shows me just how much my team was logging onto Wrike. I am a firm believer that you get what you put into a tool, and in this case, those hours needed for a grant helped build team competency in Wrike for long term success.

I hope my anecdotes provided some help. Always happy to discuss more in-depth!

Stephanie

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Hi Ryan Nelson,

I think you mentioned that you oversee financial areas in a session (such as accounts payable/receivable). Could you provide any insight on how Wrike helped bridge silos and connect the work of finance to other teams at your organization. I think a misconception at our org is that the tool is only for people who manage service/program delivery related projects, and that other teams don't need to use it.

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Hi Cammille,

Yes I do work in the financial areas as the Controller. On top of AP/AR, I also over see Scheduling and Payroll. There is a list of things we use Wrike for within my team. These things include;

Work Expense submission, approval, and processing
Cooperate Credit Card processing. 
Tracking outstanding AR accounts to collect
Budget, and ISR submissions. (This starts on the program side with information given, then comes to me to compile the budget and Individual Service Request. I then submit the package to government for bidding on contracts)
Bill Tracker
Processing Payroll items   (starts just after time sheets are summitted and Wrike provides a check list for multiple parties to finish so Payroll can be processed).
Schedule team and HR team work together when filling positions either internally or externally so that schedules can be updated after collaboration. 

If you have some specific examples that you would like to talk through I would love to help. 

-Hope this helps. 

Ryan

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Ryan Nelson thank you, this really helps!

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