The Organizational Mapping Tool (OMT) is an open-source, organizational assessment tool that is designed to help nonprofits identify and prioritize their organizational strengthening needs. BUILD grantees use the tool at the beginning of their grant period to help them better understand and prioritize their needs in key areas like strategy, leadership, finances, and systems. The OMT also yields data that the foundation’s BUILD team uses to improve its own responsiveness and performance.
Why we chose this tool
The OMT is designed to provide clear qualitative markers of organizational development, creating an assessment of an organization’s current state as well as a roadmap for its improvement. Administering the OMT leads to rich, productive, participatory conversations and insights. We believe the process itself is a form of institutional strengthening.
How it works
Unlike many other assessment tools, the OMT is designed to be a face-to-face, organization-wide process. With expenses covered by the foundation, organizations choose a trained facilitator to conduct a session where their entire staff completes the OMT together. The sessions vary in length, and depend on an organization’s preferences.
While Ford program officers do not see the individual results unless an organization chooses to share them, the OMT serves as an essential source of learning for our BUILD program, and the foundation as a whole. An external vendor provides us with anonymized, aggregate data about the overall characteristics, strengths, and weaknesses of BUILD organizations, so that we can identify patterns to help us better meet their needs.
Still have questions?
The OMT is a key part of all our BUILD grants, but as an open-source tool, it is available for anyone to use. It is currently available in seven languages, which you can access below.
Experience has shown that the OMT can open up very enriching conversations internally. These are not always easy conversations, but can lead to productive directions for the organization if they’re taken in a spirit of openness, improvement and collaboration. That’s why it’s important to have a facilitator lead the exercise, to have a skilled neutral party manage the discussion and ensure that all voices are heard.
Through the OMT process, we also hope to promote the best, and most participatory, strategic thinking behind the organizational strengthening component of your BUILD grant.
Your Ford program officer will not see the individual OMT results unless you choose to share them. After obtaining your review and approval of the final report, the facilitator will send an OMT report to an external vendor, who will remove comments and any identifying information. They will then provide anonymized, aggregate data to Ford staff about the overall characteristics, strengths, and weaknesses of the organizations chosen to participate in BUILD for the Foundation’s own internal learning. This data will help the BUILD team identify patterns in organizational strengthening needs and priorities, and mobilize resources to address them.