Welcome back to Metric Mondays! Check out our previous discussion on Independent Board of Directors. Today, we’ll tackle two metrics at once: Form 990 Posted Online and Audited Financial Statements Posted Online.
These metrics focus on transparency, i.e. the steps an organization has taken to allow donors, constituents, and other observers to better understand its operations and structure. For donors, it is vitally important to have easy access to a nonprofit’s financial data, as this data helps make informed giving decisions. Without the data available in these documents, it is difficult to know whether an organization spends donor dollars responsibly, or even if it spends them on their mission at all! In addition, charities are required to make their 990 data available upon request to anyone who asks for it, and posting this data online fulfills that obligation in an efficient way.
Organizations that do not receive credit for this metric may simply have lapsed in publishing the most recent documents, but it is still important that they do so, in order to be as transparent about their financial health as possible.
To learn more about our Accountability & Transparency metrics, take a look at our Accountability & Transparency Methodology.