Forecasting voluntary income: donations and membership
This section covers how to predict voluntary income and external factors that are likely to affect it.
Organisations that have been established for a few years are likely to find it easier to predict voluntary income, especially if they compare tables of previous years' income. Younger organisations may need to be more cautious.
However, all organisations are affected by external factors. Combining this information with internal data (donor age, frequency of giving, size of gift, for example) can increase the reliability of forcasting.
NCVO's Almanac research shows that the main external factors affecting this voluntary income are:
- Voluntary income is often described as 'free' income, as it is not tied to a particular outcome. Increasingly, however, donors seem more inclined to give if there is a specific project.
- Organisations that appeal to the philanthropic motives of individuals are heavily dependent on the trust that has been developed.
- Public confidence in all types of public institutions continues to decline, which is likely to affect levels on giving.
- There is increasing competition, not only among voluntary organisations but with other types of activity, for the disposable income of individuals.
Find out more about NCVO's UK Civil Society Almanac.
SWOT analysis of voluntary income
- Direct action
- Trust and confidence
- Discretionary disposable income
- Feasibility study
- Target innovation
- Free riding
Back to what is a budget?
Advice and support
- Funding and finance
- Coping with cuts
- Addressing needs
- Managing change
- Planning for the future
- Involving people
- Public Service Delivery
- Governance and leadership
- Compact Advocacy programme
- Campaigning and influencing policy
- Collaborative working
- ICT (information and communication technology)
- Climate change
- People, HR and employment