Lean Business Principles to Keep Nonprofits Ahead of the Curve

January 5th, 2024

What do we mean when we call an organization lean?

Lean organizations use fewer resources – employees, capital, equipment, office space – to create greater value than their peers. Because nonprofits are often in the position of having to do more with less, lean principles are especially important.

When organizations use less resources – hire fewer employees or conduct layoffs, keep office rent down, narrow product lines, cut back on spending, etc. – their costs are lower because they’re paying for less and being more methodical about expenses.

Toyota, the second largest car company in the world and a pioneer of lean principles since the 1960s, perhaps summarizes lean best: “Making only ‘what is needed, when it is needed, and in the amount needed.’”  These same principles apply to the services of nonprofits.

How 10x Management Keeps Nonprofits Lean & Ahead of the Curve

For over a decade, 10x Management has helped forward-thinking nonprofits like Idealist, The Gates Foundation, MIT and others pursue lean principles by reconsidering their hiring practices. Our case study on Idealist demonstrates how nonprofits can streamline and save with contract tech talent. “We saved a tremendous amount on technology costs working with 10x since our needs were met by a fraction of the number of people.”

We’ve helped nonprofits pursue an efficient alternative to full-time hiring by providing experienced and vetted freelance tech talent for one-off projects, specific deliverables, ongoing hourly work, part-time contracts, and full-time contingencies. Engaging freelance tech talent through 10x has allowed these nonprofits to address needs as they arise, or in the words of Toyota, “what is needed, when it is needed, and in the amount needed.”

Per the Daily MBA, outsourcing allows you to control costs, which is the largest reason that companies use it. You can pay for services as you need them and avoid making major investments in infrastructure, software, and personnel. Further, you’re able to increase the efficiency of your business by getting expert help without having to hire experts full-time.”

10x freelancers can be placed on projects within two days and require minimal onboarding, as they’re already well-versed in what it takes to work with organizations and companies of all sizes. So the time to productivity is exceptionally short, a serious advantage in lean principles.

Partnering with 10x

The first step in working with 10x is to specifically determine the need at your nonprofit and to list all the skills required. We’ll consider your needs and the skills required, ask further relevant questions about the project/role, and immediately match the right tech freelancer/team from our exclusive, vetted roster to the position, allowing you to focus on your customers and minimize overhead.
After more than a decade in business, we’re exceptionally good at quickly matching our talent to a need and helping nonprofits minimize waste. Let us help your nonprofit stay lean and provide the right tech talent for “what is needed, when it is needed, and in the amount needed.”