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    Anatomy of a Non-Profit: How Cooperative Purchasing can Help

    By: Jason Boutwell
    December 12, 2018

    A non-profit organization faces unique challenges, including a few struggles here and there just to keep the lights on. In fact, the operational aspects that most people in for-profit organizations take for granted every day - utilities, insurance, maintenance, IT - can be problematic in a non-profit setting where financial decisions are scrutinized and money is earmarked.

    To help non-profits, it's important to learn about their particular circumstances and limitations. We at Marco have worked hard to understand, actively listen to and propose solutions for non-profits in ways that make sense within the mission of each particular non-profit.

    One of the tools that can help a non-profit in many ways is Sourcewell. Sourcewell, formerly known as NJPA, was conceived and is currently run as a clearinghouse for products and services that can be purchased by government state agencies, school districts and non-profits. Sourcewell has already done the heavy lifting as it pertains to competitive solicitations, allowing organizations to simply select a product or service and purchase it without all of the bureaucracy.

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    To better understand how Sourcewell can help your non-profit with cooperative purchasing, it is helpful to understand these aspects of non-profits...

    Grant Money

    Anatomy of a Non-Profit: How Cooperative Purchasing can HelpGrant money helps non-profits tremendously, but there are often strings attached. If your budget needs a little extra to cover new technology needs, you often can’t use allocated grant money for that.

    You may have a substantial grant to cover a special project - a new roof, an outreach campaign, an accessible van - but there are few grants out there to help your organization with their IT needs. Non-profits are often left scrambling with few resources to meet their growing technology needs.

    With Sourcewell, non-profit organizations can forget about all the time and money spent doing research for the best options before a purchase. It's all been done for you, ahead of time.

    Expertise

    Many non-profits can’t afford their own IT professional, and technology purchases can be pretty daunting. Your staff may be good at fundraising, but that doesn’t mean they know which router to choose for their network (if they even know what a router really does).

    Sourcewell partners with IT professionals who can help. They work with you to find a local professional who can provide the needed expertise for your organization.

    Proven technology, Effectively priced

    Making technology purchases when you are not well-versed in the available options can be intimidating. And it can also leave you with doubt about whether you made the right choice. If the hardware or software doesn’t perform as expected, you're likely stuck. And on top of that, you may not have extra budget to correct it.

    Sourcewell can help you avoid all of this.

    They have vetted the technology they recommend, and they have made sure you are getting a fair price - one that was established after they take care of negotiation. Sourcewell gives non-profits the confidence they need to know they're getting the best value when they make a purchase. Because they work with non-profit organizations on a regular basis, they understand your struggles and what you need to be successful. Get connected and start exploring how Sourcewell cooperative purchasing contracts can help your non-profit.

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    Topics: Sourcewell Contracts
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