This technique does require a lot of planning and ongoing data inputting though, so think carefully about what the benefits are in relation to the time and staff/volunteer resources being put into. Be transparent, open and honest: The report is a space to voice achievements and celebrate successes, however if the organisation hasn't been able to achieve all it wanted to in the past year then be honest about. Most stakeholders appreciate honesty and transparency, so long as lessons are learnt. Add visuals and facts: Think about having a 'this year in numbers' page to highlight key achievements over the past year in a bite-size way. It may be a good idea to organise a photo shoot of your service users to communicate in pictures the valuable work you do, coupled with powerful"s. This can reduce the need for so much text and detail but it will depend on your resources. Know your stakeholders and their consumption habits: Whether you produce a digital or hardcopy report will depend on the individual organisation's budget and time constraints as well as the consumption habits of your stakeholders.
Annual Report - tesol international Association
Create an online annual report as the primary tool and have a short print run of the physical version for those who need. With digital versions there is more opportunity to include engaging infographics, videos and animations to get the message across more effectively and it can reach a much greater number of people. Digital versions will be discovered by people online without them having to ask you first. If you have paper only, you have to physically send or hand it to them whereas an online version opens up your report to the casual online user and broadens your audience. Digital reports can aid analytics: every pdf downloaded can be tracked so you know exactly how wallpaper many reports have been distributed. If you have an online report as a microsite or set of pages, you can use analytics to track exactly which pages of your report are the most-read, how many times your embedded case studies have been watched, which stories were the most popular and. Consider adopting a culture of consistently reporting impact, rather than a focussed, once-a-year annual report mentality: Digital reports and online tools can help improve the way your website reports your impact on an ongoing basis. To be truly effective, charities need to monitor and evaluate their effectiveness continuously. Encouraging a culture of continuous service improvement is good for any organisation, particuarly for small charities wishing to grow. Link your internal data to your website or other online tools where possible so you can automate the process of updating your data and display the most up to date information with the least effort: you could consider linking your website and other online tools. For example, if you used a google spreadsheet to manage data such as your key performance Indicators or aggregated service usage data, google Apps and Charts could be programmed to work together to always display the most up-to-date graphics, which can then be embedded.
But don't forget that the Charity commission and Companies house have certain criteria which you have to adhere to in your annual accounts. Include a strong call to action: you need a strong call to action at the end of your report. Make it clear what you'd like your audience to do once they've read it - donate, purchase services etc. Don't miss out on plan the mobile market: It's worth considering if many stakeholders may be read your report on their smartphones. If so, highlighting your biggest stats, lots of white space and keeping your report concise are even more important. Matt Collins - head of marketing, beatbullying, use stand out text: A good way to inform flick-through readers is to include detail with large font, pulling out text and"s that summarise a page. For example, a summary of the year might say "This year, we have doubled the number of young people we help across London" while the rest of the text explains this in more detail. Explore low cost digital options: There are many benefits to producing a digital report - it is far cheaper.
Ask them to volunteer. Remind them of planned giving options. Tell them about gifts of stock. Steer them to ways to use their credit card to donate. Be clear about the best ways to help. Zoe amar - writing head of marketing and business development, lasa, less is more: be selective. If you include everything, the annual report just becomes a recipe for information overload. Think about what you want to focus on, select statistics to represent that and then highlight key achievements within that by using design, case studies or"s.
Triple-Check your Donor Lists, theres no better way to sabotage a future donation than to spell the donors name wrong in your annual report. If you are uncertain about a name, dont guess. Check it with the donor. Also, carefully check the names of government agencies and foundations that gave you grants. The names people call these organizations in conversation are often short-hand for the full legal names that belong in your annual report. Tell Donors How They can Help never leave a potential supporter hanging, wondering how they can help you. Once you have inspired your readers with the good works in your annual report, conclude by telling them how they can help you do more. How can they support you with their money or time?
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Text about numbers makes peoples eyes glaze over. An infographic grabs their attention, and these figures will likely be remembered. What numbers should you include? How about where does your money comes from and how you spend it? How many people did you reach? What are your primary fundraising strategies?
Did you create any cost-savings tactics this year? If you need More Space, trim the donor Lists. Nonprofits need to strike a balance between using writing the space in their annual report to discuss their accomplishments and using it to recognize donors. If as much as half of your annual report is donor lists, you should consider scaling the lists back to make more room for text and photos. Smaller donors can be recognized in other ways such as lists in newsletters. Also consider honoring donors in other ways, such as calling them out on social media or posting photos of them after an event.
Now that you have got them looking at the photos tell a story with your captions. Dont just state whats in the picture. Connect the photo to an accomplishment. If people read nothing but the captions in your annual report, they should still get a sense for the good work you did last year. Include personal Profiles, donors love real stories about real people.
General summaries of your work will put your donors to sleep. Explain what you have accomplished overall, and then humanize your statistics with some personal profiles. Highlight how your work helped a particular individual. Share a volunteers story of how they made a positive difference. Explain your Financials, many of your donors will not know how to read a financial statement or wont take the time to read. Include a paragraph or two that explains in plain English what the tables say. Try putting some of that information into an infographic. The very act of designing an infographic forces you to simplify and simplify some more.
What makes a good annual report?
These pictures should show the people or animals that you help, not your board members, ceo, or major donors. Todays donors expect a story from you, remote and that story can be told even better with great photos. Invest in a good digital camera, or spend some money on a professional photographer. It is also fine to use stock photography if you are on a tight budget, as long as you choose those images carefully. Type 'royalty free stock photos' in your favorite search engine, and you will find numerous sites. Your photos should feature faces more than things. Write captions that tell your story.
Inspire donors with accomplishments related to your mission in your annual report and leave all the administrative items for your report to your board. Dont Brag About your Fundraising Accomplishments. Donors expect you to raise money, but fundraising achievements should not be celebrated in your annual report on the same level as your mission-related results. Readers would rather know what protein you did with the money than how you raised. While it is appropriate to include information on how well your fundraising efforts are going, it is best to place this information in the financial section of your report, rather than front and center. Include Photos In The Annual Report. Yes, photos are worth a thousand words. Many of the people reading your annual report will not read. So, show them what you have been doing with the liberal use of photos.
know what you did, but more importantly, they want to know why you did. What were the results? Why did you spend your time and money the way you did? What difference did it make? Connect the everyday activities of your organization to your mission statement. Dont assume that readers will automatically understand how your activities help you achieve your mission. Connect the dots for them. Stop Talking About Internal Stuff, getting a high-speed internet connection in the office and new accounting software may be big accomplishments from where you sit at your desk, but they have nothing to do with your mission.
Many are posted on websites rather than printed and mailed. An annual report presentation could be a video, a postcard, or a slideshow. Many annual reports become the nonprofits case for support, to frame a fundraising campaign. Annual reports might not even be called that. . They might be a report to our community or a call to action. They often use themes to organize the information, such as a day in the life of or transformation. The key to a successful annual report today may be simply using your imagination, hunting out many examples from charities similar to yours, and figuring out what your audience enjoys. A younger audience will love something digital while an older donor pool might prefer a more traditional approach.
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This online annual report from, save the Children focuses on results and how donors have made them possible. Save the Childern, although nonprofits do report to the irs with their annual 990s, they also know that they should produce a publication that presents their accomplishments to their supporters and the general public. An annual report can help you demonstrate your accomplishments to current and future donors, cultivate new partnerships and give writings recognition to important people. However, nonprofits often struggle with what should be included in an annual report and what should be left out. Annual reports have also changed significantly over time. Once rather ponderous brochures written in language that only insiders could understand, annual reports now speak to a broader group of people and use easy to comprehend text plus many more photos and infographics. Annual reports come in all formats, sizes, and presentations.