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Release Notes

View the improvements made to Charity Navigator's website, rating criteria, and methodology.

 
 

July 24, 2020 - V.01.04 Encompass Rating System

To learn more about our new rating system, read the series documenting our approach and process in our blog.

Ratings Updates

  • The top level Encompass Rating System score graphic is now visible on each profile page of a nonprofit that receives the new rating.
    • All passing scores will be marked with ?Give with Confidence? above the score. A circle around the numerical score is filled in based on the score received.
    • Passing scores will fill the scale in with a green color. Scales that don?t pass will fill in the scale with a dark gray color.
    • The passing score is 75. There is a mark on the scale to show the passing mark.
  • Encompass Rating applied to top level rating with a small helper link that brings the user to the brief description of the Ecnompass Rating System on the nonprofit profile page.
  • Final Charity Navigator Advisory System placement and graphics complete and rendered on page.
    • Low and Moderate Concern Advisories are overlaid on the Encompass Score.
    • Advisory description is placed above rating information on the profile page.
    • A High Concern Advisory will wipe the rating and any corresponding data from the page.
    • The side dashboard and advisory detail section wrapped in border with color corresponding to Advisory: Yellow - Low, Orange - Medium, Red - High.
  • Nonprofits have a badge accessible to them on their nonprofit profile page that they may use on their website, and other marketing and fundraising collateral.
  • Improved handling and messages for organizations that Charity Navigator does not currently rate.

Profile Page Updates

  • Redesigned header region is condensed to display the organization?s name without a background image.
  • Mission statement moved up the page to directly under the organization name.
  • Web address and mailing address moved together on same line in organization description section.
  • Small enhancement to spacing of dashboard.

July 17, 2020 - V.01.03 Encompass Rating System

To learn more about our new rating system, read the series documenting our approach and process in our blog.

Ratings Updates

  • We introduce the name for the system in this update! Encompass Rating System, is the new name, which will remain in a beta state until we have measures in each one of the indicator (beacon) areas.
  • The beacon icons are visible in the dashboard.
  • Advisories have been styled on the page
    • The Charity Navigator Advisory System received a redesign of the advisory visuals which overlay the Encompass Rating.
    • The Advisory Details section is placed underneath the organizational information section.
    • High advisory organizations will not be eligible to receive an Encompass Rating.
  • Our first placement of charts in a beacon report details section:organizational expense breakdowns for the last three years that can be found in the Program Expense section of the Finance & Accountability Report.

Profile Page Updates

  • Each beacon section has a color-coded border that wraps the beacon details sections.
  • Small improvements to spacing of information and other layout fixes.
  • Back to the top is included in each beacon section to support page navigation.

July 10, 2020 - V.01.02 New Rating System

To learn more about our new rating system, read the series documenting our approach and process in our blog.

Ratings Updates

  • Initial layout and explanation of the four indicator (beacon) system
    • All four beacons listed on ratings dashboard.
    • The beacons all have descriptions that can be accessed through the dashboard by clicking on “See Details”.
    • Initial description of each indicator is listed in the details section.
    • Note: Beacon names and topics subject to modification and change based on user feedback.
  • Impact & Results section created:
    • Programs listed with amount and percentage spent on each program. This data is drawn from IRS form 990.
    • Details section built with placeholders for partner data on program impact and results.  
  • Top-level ratings explanation developed that provides an overview of the new rating system, the overall score of the organization, and whether the organization passed the current version of the rating system. 

Profile Page Updates

  • Added additional organizational information including: organizational mailing address, IRS nonprofit designation and classification, organizational mission, and IRS nonprofit status ruling year.
  • All four Beacon detail sections now part of page layout.
  • Top-level ratings explanation section and score on page.

June 30, 2020 - V.01.01 - Public Beta Launch

To learn more about our new rating system, read the series documenting our approach and process in our blog.

Ratings Updates

  • Overall experimental rating score on 100 point scale provides to approximately 135,000 organizations, of which ~100,000 organizations pass.
  • Version 1 of Finance & Accountability indicator (beacon) released with five underlying measures that provide a baseline measure of organizational stability and sustainability:
    • Program Expense Ratio (25 points)
    • Liabilities to Assets Ratio (15 points)
    • Independent Board (25 points)
    • Independent Audit or External Financial Review (25 points)
    • Website Address Listed on IRS Form 990 (10 points)
  • This initial Finance & Accountability beacon is a completely automated measure leveraged data from IRS form 990.  Charity Navigator requires three years of e-filed IRS data, but there are no other eligibility criteria.  
  • Financial detail section completed with:
    • Financial scoring highlights with high impact, low impact and no impact. 
    • Underlying financial report that includes a detailed description of each metric with associated scoring.
  • Impact & Results beacon rendered without any data. 

Profile Page Updates

  • Completely redesigned nonprofit profile page released for 1.6 million nonprofit organizations.
  • Ratings dashboard as the focal point for our ratings that also acts as the page navigation that allows users to see more details within each beacon.
  • Responsive new theme implemented that adjusts cleanly across desktop, tablet, and mobile versions.
  • A revamped and more modern color palette to accompany modern page design.
  • Redesigned top menu and footer.

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