• Nonprofit Learning Lab

Program Planning, Scaling and Building: How to Build & Scale New & Existing Programs


Creating and expanding programs and services in a nonprofit helps lead to growth, innovation and delivery of services. Program development, expansion and scaling is a process and takes time for staff, board members and volunteers. Sometimes we find ourselves expanding or scaling nonprofit programs before we are fully ready to launch. Nonprofit program expansion and scaling may occur because an opportunity arises or a funder, board member or supervisor requests an expansion from an agency. Our checklist below serves as a resource to help you understand all the steps involved in program expansion.


Checklist for Program Expansion

  • Is the expanded or scaled program aligned with the nonprofit’s mission and vision?

  • Is the expanded or scaled program integrated into the organization’s strategic plan?

  • Has the expanded or scaled program been approved by the board of directors?

  • Has the expanded or scaled program been reviewed by the senior leadership team?

  • Have clients or the community been involved in giving input for the expanded or scaled program?

  • Has a beta test or pilot been conducted for the expanded or new program?

  • Does your expanded program have clear outcomes for the community that is being served that are also measurable?

  • Does your expanded program have clear goals that are a result of the expanded program?

  • Does your program have clear strategies so that goals can be reached?

  • Is your existing program serving as a model for your program expansion?

Being able to answer these questions in our nonprofit program expansion checklist will help guide you in determining how much more you need to put into scaling your nonprofit programs. You may not have all the answers to these questions right away but working through each of them can help you figure out the process in scaling and expanding your nonprofit programs.

Looking for additional resources on nonprofit program expansion or on how to scale nonprofits programs? We are hosting a workshop series: Program Planning, Scaling and Building: How to Build & Scale New & Existing Programs to Reach Your Goals. Learn more and register at www.nonprofitlearninglab.org/programplanning. In this workshop, we will explore: models for nonprofit expansion, managing nonprofit growth, and the steps in how to scale a program.

23 views

Recent Posts

See All