Software Demos: How to Get Your Nonprofit Team Ready to Watch One
We’ve discussed so many incredible nonprofit technology and software solutions to help you streamline your organization.
But with so many options out there, how do you make the best decision for your needs? Surely, there’s gotta be a way to get an inside look.
There is! One of the best ways to get a sneak peek of nonprofit technology is through software demos for nonprofits.
And we’re giving you a complete guide on how to get ready to watch one (so you make the most of your time!):
What Are Software Demos for Your Nonprofit?
Most service providers that offer software solutions know how important it is for organizations to make the right buying decision.
And for these kinds of solutions, the best way to help potential clients do that is by offering a look inside.
That’s what a software demo is. And for most of the nonprofit technology we chat about, the providers offer a demo for it!
These software demos for your nonprofit consist of hopping on a virtual meeting with a representative of the solution. On it, they’ll answer all of your questions about how the software integrates with your nonprofit.
And even better, they showcase how their solution makes your life easier as a nonprofit professional.
It’s your chance to ask all of the questions you need answered before you make any decision whatsoever.
But it’s also good to know that most software demos are going to, essentially, be sales pitches.
That’s not inherently a bad thing! Each representative for any nonprofit software demo only wants to help you make the most educated decision for your organization.
What Types of Solutions Offer Software Demos?
Most software that doesn’t offer a free trial of some kind will offer a software demo so you can get a clear understanding of how the solution works.
Some even offer both a free trial and a demo!
Usually, you can count on any of the following types of tools to have software demos for you to participate in:
- Nonprofit CRM tools
- Fundraising platforms
- Online donation platforms
- Grant management software
- Nonprofit accounting software
- Volunteer management software
- Nonprofit HR software
How to Get Your Nonprofit Team Ready to Watch Software Demos:
Once you’re ready to speak with a representative of a nonprofit software solution, all you need to do is hop on the call, right?
Well, sure! You can do that. But, you may not make the best use of your time if you’re not prepared.
Not only that, but if you don’t do a little prep work beforehand, you may even make the wrong decision for your organization.
So here are 4 steps to get your nonprofit team ready to watch software demos:
1. Get in Touch with the Necessary Nonprofit Team Members
First, you need to determine which nonprofit professionals will mostly be using the software. Then, get in touch with them. These are the people who are going to use it day in and day out. So making sure they’re in the loop on the software you’re researching is essential!
If it’s possible, it may be a good idea to include them in any software demos you participate in. They may have great questions to ask a representative, too!
Ask Them What They Need in a Nonprofit Software Solution
What do they need in a nonprofit software solution? If they’re in the HR department of your organization, what tasks do they need to automate?
What about if they’re working mainly with acquiring new supporters? Are they looking for platforms that create detailed analytics? Or do they need wealth screening?
How about a team that handles the finances and accounting for the nonprofit? What needs are they looking to have met to streamline their daily tasks?
Without asking them specifically, you may find that your buying decisions aren’t fully informed. And we don’t want you to risk making the wrong decision!
Create a Checklist of Ideal Software Features
Once you’ve spoken with the team that will use the software, it’s time to list out everything you need to look for.
Now, not every single solution will meet all your needs. And the ones that do may be out of budget.
So when you create your checklist, make sure you prioritize appropriately. What are the software features that your nonprofit professionals cannot live without? Which ones are just the cherry on top?
Take this checklist with you to all of your nonprofit tech demos!
2. Create a Comparison Spreadsheet
You’ll probably want to compare multiple software to find the best one for your nonprofit organization. So go ahead and create a comparison spreadsheet so you can keep track of which software does what.
You can use your spreadsheet on all of your software demos as you get answers to specific questions from representatives!
3. Map Out an Ideal Software Workflow
One of the great parts of hopping on software demos is so you can get a feel for how different solutions work for your current situation.
So before your call, map out an ideal workflow. You can take this to the demo with you and ask the representative how their software solution would fit within the workflow.
For example, if you have a new donor that makes their first contribution, what automated steps do you want your ideal software to do next? Map that out in a workflow, and then ask your representative during the nonprofit tech demo!
4. Come Ready with the Right Questions
And just like with any kind of big purchasing decision, it’s best to be prepared with the right questions.
This is your time to get all of the information you need to make your nonprofit even more successful!
So, here are just a few of our favorite questions to ask during your nonprofit tech demo:
How Much Will It Cost for Your Specific Organization?
A lot of nonprofit software solutions have tiered pricing based on the needs and size of the organization. While you’re on the phone with your representative, be sure to ask what the specific price would be for your nonprofit.
It’s always something to consider, no matter what the software offers!
How is the Software Equipped to Handle an Organization of Your Size?
Your representative should be forthcoming and tell you straight away whether or not their software is a good fit for your organization.
Some nonprofit tech is better for larger, enterprise-sized organizations. And others are more suited for smaller, just-starting-out organizations.
Be sure to ask the representative if the software is appropriate for the size of yours! The last thing you want is one that isn’t equipped to handle a larger organization. Or, the other way around, that’s too big and offers features (that you pay for!) that you don’t need yet.
How Does the Service Provider Handle or Help with Integrations?
Plenty of nonprofit software solutions should interact and integrate with one another. This helps streamline everything in your organization.
For example, many nonprofit CRM tools will integrate with nonprofit accounting software, online donation platforms, and (or) even email marketing platforms.
But not every solution will! And even if it does, it might not integrate with a nonprofit software your organization already uses.
So make sure the tool you’re looking at will work with any other tools you already have!
How Does the Service Provider Handle or Help with Migration?
For many organizations, there may have been some kind of nonprofit tech solution in place. For example, maybe your nonprofit uses a CRM tool right now, but you’re outgrowing it. Or it doesn’t suit your needs anymore.
Yet, all of your information and data are stored on that CRM tool already. So if you were to switch to a different software, you’d need to move all of that data from one CRM tool to the new one.
That should definitely be a question on your list! Because many nonprofit technology solutions offer help with data migration. So be sure to ask your representatives on all of your software demos if they’ll help you with that!
How Else Does the Service Provider Offer Support or Assistance?
Finally, always ask them how they offer support or assistance. Most of these nonprofit technology solutions are massive platforms. They’re full of intricate details and features that are just waiting to help you streamline your organization!
But until you get everything situated and you use it for a while, it might feel overwhelming to implement it in your daily operations.
So always ask the representatives what kind of customer support they offer!
With all of the amazing nonprofit technology we share, we want to make sure you’re totally equipped before you hop on any software demos.
This guide will help you make the most of your time and make the best buying decision for your organization!
And when you’re ready, Nonprofit Library has plenty of software demos for nonprofit technology that is 100% zero-obligation for you and your nonprofit team!