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10 Ways Your Nonprofit Can Use Google Forms

Does your nonprofit use Google Forms?

Google Forms is a form-builder app that comes with the Google Suite of products. It’s often used to create simple surveys.

Now, Google isn’t sponsoring this post. I’m not even claiming it’s the best survey tool out there. But I’m highlighting it here because 1) I use it all the time and 2) for three very nonprofit-y reasons:

  • It’s simple.
  • It’s free.
  • It’s accessible. Even if your org doesn’t use Google products, you could sign up right now to build your first form with no fuss.

Here are 10 common and not-so-common ways your org can start getting the most from Google Forms.

10 Ways Your Nonprofit Can Leverage Google Forms

Google Forms for Nonprofits - 10 Use Cases
Here’s the page/question builder for Google Forms.

1. Constituent surveys

The reporting make this an easy win. Google Forms analyzes and summarizes respondents’ submissions as they come in. The charts are a breeze to look at, and you can view results both individually and in aggregate.

If you want to hear from donors, volunteers or other constituents – and the pricier tools are out of reach – then Google Forms is the way to go.

2. Staff feedback

Maybe you already use a fancy survey tool, like Qualtrics or Surveymonkey. But when you need occasional input from your staff, those tools can be more advanced than you need.

Google Forms is a great alternative. Simply throw together a form and send the link out to everyone.

3. Client intake

For orgs without a proper constituent database, this is a great starting point. Add a Google Form link to your web page or incorporate it into your front-desk process, so that you have a place to collect info about community members and their needs.

In addition to summarizing response data, Google Forms will let you open those results in a spreadsheet. This shouldn’t serve as your primary database, but it’s a solid starting point.

p.s. Data entry isn’t always clean. Here are some tips for organizing any spreadsheet.

4. Board/Committee onboarding

Use a Google Form at the start of a group engagement to capture info from each member. That could be contact info, availability (the multi-checklist grid feature is great for this) and other survey data.

Use the free-text question option to let members express what they want out of the engagement, too!

p.s. Sometimes it helps to see things in action. Here’s a sample onboarding form you could throw together in under 2 minutes.

5. Event registration

Need a form for people to register for an upcoming webinar or event? Again, Google Forms is an easy & quick option! I’ve personally RSVP’d for many events this way.

6. To organize data entry

Once in a while, we may need staff or volunteers to enter data into our system. But rather than have them work directly in your database – which might be complex – you can set up that data entry project using Google Form fields.

7. Performance evaluations

Does your org want to standardize or digitize the performance review process, without investing a crazy ton of money?

Then Google Forms isn’t a bad way to go. Have each manager create a feedback form that they can send to their direct reports. Or, use a Google Form to collect status updates from those managers once their reviews are all done!

8. Lead capture

How are you collecting info on prospective volunteers, donors, and partners? These potentials are called “Leads” and if your org doesn’t collect them now, then a Google Form on your nonprofit’s website or Facebook page is an easy way to start.

9. Internal requests

Expense reports. Data requests. Tech support. Grant applications. Equipment needs.

Whether you’re in ops, comms or IT, Google Forms are a smart way to organize those staff requests. In addition to keeping your workload straight, it can also streamline communication (so that you’re not fielding requests verbally, via email, and every other which way possible).

BTW, request processes are tricky. Here’s all the stuff you should consider before setting one up.

10. Quizzes

In addition to your standard survey, Google Forms also has quiz functionality. Create questions, assign correct answers, points and feedback. This can be a great tool to adopt for your next staff training, tutoring session, or classroom assessment!

Bonus/demo: Think you know everything about this sector? Either way, take this sample quiz to see these features in action!

Hope you were able to get some new ideas on how this easy, free tool can work for your organization.

Interested in Google Products For Your Org? According to TechSoup, Google offers a selection of their products for free to certain, eligible nonprofits! This option is worth having your ops person explore, especially if you’re a new nonprofit looking to build that tech infrastructure. Here’s a link to the Google for Nonprofits homepage with more info on those offerings.

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