Sparkrock Blog

8 Questions to Ask Before Starting your RFP Process

by   Craig Mundle on 09.12.17

A request for proposal (RFP) is an excellent tool for nonprofits to use to find the best products and services for their organization at competitive prices. Although it can take considerable time and effort, a well planned, written and executed RFP can be a game changer when it comes to finding a solution partner that truly understands your organisation’s goals, pain-points, and what functionality you need to ensure you continue to deliver on your mission. We know this can be a daunting task at times - so we are here to help! Below we have pulled together a list of 8 questions to ask yourself before you start the RFP process, which will point you in the right direction for a stronger and more effective RFP.

Topics: Product Innovation

Get the Most Value Out of Fuel Good: Why You Should Add an Extra Day

by   Nikki Trinnear on 08.21.17

We could go on and on about why you should attend Fuel Good, but we know that the most important reason is the chance to learn from industry experts on Finance, HR/Payroll, and O365. That's why we want to encourage all those attending to consider signing up for the additional day of training on the Wednesday before the conference begins. If you're looking to get a valuable, in-depth learning experience from Fuel Good, why only limit yourself to 2 days? Our hands-on training in Jet Reports, Sparkrock Finance and Workforce, and MS O365 will leave you amazed with how much you can learn in just one day.

Topics: Sparkrock

How to Build a Successful K12 ERP Finance Implementation Team

by   Laura Isaac on 08.15.17

So, you're thinking of implementing a new ERP system at your school board? We get it, it can be both exciting and terrifying at the same time. The reasons to move to a modern financial system are endless, but the hurdles to get there can seem daunting. No one likes change, and no one has the time to implement change on top of everything else that they have on their plate. Right? Well, I hope that I can shed a bit of light on how we at Waterloo Catholic DSB embarked on our ERP implementation so that it can help you in your upcoming project.

Topics: Finance , k12

6 Proven Strategies for Recruiting and Retaining Talent in Human Services

by   Meghan Holmes on 08.08.17

In 2016, the turnover rate for Direct Support Professionals rose to a staggering 51%. Although there are admittedly many barriers that human services agencies face when it comes to recruiting and retaining employees, this number is extremely high. And with over half of most agencies’ staff being replaced every year, it becomes not only increasingly expensive to replace employees (the average turnover cost at $3,000-$5,000 per employee), but there's also a direct impact on existing staff who are burdened with an increased workload and on the clients who receive a lower quality of care.

Topics: Workforce Management , Workforce , Operations

5 Signs your Financial System is Failing your Nonprofit Organization

by   Cait Abernethy on 08.04.17

As a nonprofit, you're looking to put every dollar towards your mission. So, it’s likely that when you were first starting out you chose a finance solution that wasn’t too costly or complicated and fit your basic needs. But as your organization grows, tools such as Accpac or Quickbooks may no longer be robust enough to handle the increasing complexity of your budget management or reporting requirements. If you're still using one of these smaller finance and accounting systems, take a second to ask yourself these questions:

Topics: Finance , Technology

The 4 Main Barriers Human Services Face with Recruiting and Retaining Talent

by   Meghan Holmes on 07.24.17

Workforce recruitment and retention in the Human Services industry is at a crisis level. Organizations are reporting staff vacancies of 20% and an astonishingly high average turnover rate of 51%. This leaves us all wondering - what's stopping qualified talent from working (and staying) in human services? 

Topics: Workforce Management , Workforce , Operations

Calling All Innovators: Share Your Industry Knowledge at Fuel Good 2018

by   Nikki Trinnear on 07.19.17

Fuel Good is the gathering for innovators and thought leaders that work behind the scenes at Nonprofit, Education, and Human Services organizations. Your hard work in Finance, Human Resources, Payroll, Operations, Program Delivery, and IT helps to "fuel" the good at your organization. 

We're looking for individuals who would like to present a session at Fuel Good 2018, and by doing so you can share what you know and impact your peers like never before. Think about all of the reasons you want to attend Fuel Good—the networking opportunities, our great parties, but mainly to learn from those in your industry. By presenting your industry best practices, tips and tricks, or personal learning stories of how you’ve overcome challenges, you open up the conversation and create a better learning environment for everyone.

Topics: Sparkrock

Sparkrock Announces Business Associate Membership with OASBO

by   Melissa Alvares on 07.18.17

Sparkrock is pleased to announce our Business Associate membership with the Ontario Association of School Board Officials (OASBO), whose over 1000 members represent all aspects of business operations in school boards across the province.

"OASBO and Sparkrock both share the mission to enable Ontario school boards to collaborate, share best practices and take advantage of new innovations to improve operations." stated Colin Dickinson, President of Sparkrock, "We are excited about our membership and how we can continue to work with K12 School Boards across Ontario enable them to serve their schools, teachers and students with less effort, stress and expense."

As part of its business associate membership with OASBO, Sparkrock will be featured on OASBO's website, and will participate in all of the association events.

"It’s rare to have such a strong solution provider that genuinely cares about its customers. It’s a long term partnership that we both very much benefit from." said Alecia Lantz, Superintendent of Business at Bruce-Grey Catholic District School Board, Sparkrock customer and OASBO member.

Topics: News Release

Does your Human Services Agency need a Digital Transformation?

by   Melissa Alvares on 07.12.17

I recently came across a great article written by Open Mind's Founder, Monica Oss around Digital Transformation. Open Minds is a premier market intelligence and management support firm specializing in the health and human service sector and serving individuals with complex needs.

First off - what do we mean by Digital Transformation? Yes, the phrase sounds like something an expensive management consultant came up with, but at the core it's really just about the change an organization experiences when they apply new digital technology.

Topics: Technology

Fundraising with YouTube? Here are 10 Features of a Great Creative Strategy

by   Cait Abernethy on 06.30.17

Move over funny cat videos and the double rainbow guy, nonprofits are becoming major players in the YouTube ecosystem! These organizations have amassed over 4.6 billion views since the start of the YouTube for Nonprofits program, and there are now over 25 thousand nonprofit partners using the platform to further their causes and do good in their communities and the world.

Topics: Fundraising , Outcomes-Impact

How to Think Like a Funder When Planning Your Technology Project

by   Dhebi Hay on 06.29.17

Technology is changing fast, and having the most up-to-date internal technology system is a sure-fire way to help your nonprofit organization keep up with the times. However, this beneficial technology can often come with a pretty hefty price tag, and nonprofits don’t always have the resources available to afford the cost.

Topics: Fundraising