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2014 NJ Non-Profit Trends and Outlook Report


New Jersey's Non-Profit Sector: An Economic Force


2013 NJ Non-Profit Trends and Outlook Report



National Council of Nonprofits
The Faces of the Nonprofit Sector

Nonprofits by the Numbers

Myths about Nonprofits

Urban Institute
National Center for Charitable Statistics

New Jersey's Non-Profit Community

"The Center helps me remember the bigger picture. It reminds me that what affects any segment of the non-profit community affects me."
-- James A. Hemm, Former Executive Director, NJ Association on Correction

Basic Facts/Figures

  • 30,000 501(c)(3) organizations in NJ
  • NJ 501(c)(3)’s employ 304,000 people – nearly 10% of the state’s private sector work force and more people than many major industries including construction, utilities, transportation, finance and insurance.
  • Over $37 billion in annual expenditures by NJ 501(c)(3) organizations – much of it within the Garden State
  • 88% of NJ 501(c)(3) organizations have budgets under $500,000
  • Over 1.5 million people volunteer at New Jersey non-profits annually, providing over 160 million hours of service valued at more than $3.4 billion.

Sources: Center for Non-Profits, “New Jersey’s Non-Profit Sector: An Economic Force, 2009-2010 Edition;” Urban Institute, National Center for Charitable Statistics; and Johns Hopkins University

New Jersey Non-Profit Issues/Trends

  • 82% of NJ non-profit survey respondents say that demand for services had risen in 2013
  • 80% expected demand to increase in 2014
  • 46% reported relatively level funding in 2013 vs. 2012, but 31% reported that expenditures had exceeded income in their most recent fiscal year.
  • 74% expected expenses to rise in the coming year (2014) but only 58% expected total income to increase
  • Although caution remained prevalent in the non-profit community, overall outlook for 2014 was more optimistic than in recent years.
  • Non-profits have adapted by taking a combination of actions, such as continuing to seek additional sources of revenue and recruit additional volunteers to support their work; adding new programs; launching new collaborative efforts; or exploring mergers/consolidations.

Top 5 issues affecting individual organization viability (aside from funding):

  • Financial uncertainty (55%)
  • Need for better branding/communications (50%)
  • Need for stronger board of trustees (49%)
  • Cannot afford enough good staff (36%)
  • Increased benefits/insurance costs (31%)

Top 5 issues affecting non-profit sector viability in the coming decade:

  • Attracting/retaining capable, committed board members (57%)
  • Non-profit infrastructure/capacity building (55%)
  • Foundation/corporate funding (47%)
  • Attracting/retaining qualified workers (39%)
  • Giving/volunteering incentives (33%)
  • Improving public understanding about non-profits (33%)

Source: Center for Non-Profits, New Jersey Non-Profits 2014: Trends and Outlook

Non-Profit Values

In some way or another, everyone’s life is touched by the work of a non-profit. 

Non-profits enhance our daily lives by:

  • engaging us in civic discourse;
  • assisting New Jersey’s most vulnerable people;
  • educating and mentoring our youth as well as adults who want to continue to learn;
  • providing stewardship to parks and other open spaces that provide respite from a busy world;
  • encouraging creativity and an exchange of ideas through public television and radio;
  • offering artistic inspiration and cultural enrichment;
  • providing an outlet for generosity through volunteerism and donations;
  • motivating social change; and
  • ensuring vital services that span a lifetime.

Non-profit organizations are an essential part of maintaining a strong quality of life in New Jersey, and they are also a valuable component of the state’s economic engine.  There are over 30,000  501(c)(3) non-profit organizations in New Jersey, not only providing essential programs and services in our communities, but also serving as a vital part of our economy.  IRS data show that New Jersey’s non-profits combined spend more than $37 billion annually, most of it in the Garden State.  New Jersey non-profits employ more than 304,000 people – nearly 10% of the state’s private workforce, and more than the state’s transportation and public utilities industries, more than the construction industry, and more than the banking and insurance industries.

Non-profits make up a vital sector that improves life for everyone. Non-profits are all about service to others, strengthening communities, finding common bonds across disparate personal and professional backgrounds, and enriching our society in countless ways large and small.  Every day, non-profits realize significant accomplishments that make our world a better place.