Working with Consultants

Working With Consultants

Gaining External Expertise and Services

Consultants support the effectiveness of nonprofit agencies and grantmakers in many ways and on many levels. Organizations look to outside providers to access needed knowledge, analyze and make recommendations on significant issues, conduct pre-defined tasks, facilitate group decision-making, and much more.

Aligning the right consultant with an organization’s need, budget, and work style can generate significant benefits for all involved. Unfortunately, nonprofits and grantmakers generally build their skills for recruiting and managing consultants through engagements that are difficult – leading to frustration, limited results, and lost time and dollars.

Based on lessons we’ve learned as well as the experiences of grantees we support, the Foundation is generating resources for working with consultants. A first release is highlighted below, with subsequent items planned for fall 2018. These future releases will include essays on working with consultants who specialize in high-interest topics: communications and marketing, evaluation, fundraising, and strategic planning.

Well Done: Managing a Successful Consulting Project

This guide can help nonprofits and grantmakers take the necessary steps to find, hire, and manage a consultant who delivers what you need through a process that makes good use of your resources. It features nine steps that can help frame your approach, as well as links to helpful tools and information sources.