Free and low-cost tools to do more with your data

EMPOWER TOOLS

These are a collection of short, accessible handouts created by our team to help you with many of your common data needs, from understanding staff needs and goals to improving your data processes. We cover best practices, our favorite tips and tricks, and introductions to tools. We have dozens of tools ready to download, print and share with your staff. Check them out here.

DATA MANAGEMENT TOOLS

Data can be intimidating, and often feels like busy work. Data can also help you keep track of and demonstrate your achievements. While we offer various services to help you collect and manage data, we also love many of the free and low cost tools out there to get you started on your own. Check out our list of free and low cost data management tools here.

TRAINING RESOURCES

Need a little help learning how to use a data or research tool? Want to take your skills to the next level, or support your staff’s professional development? We offer one-on-one and group training on many skills and tools, and there are also many free and low- cost training web sites out there, and there are more options emerging all the time. Check out our roundup of free and low cost training sites here.

PUBLIC DATA SOURCES

There are many places to access local, state, national and international data–and many of those sources have data tools built right into their web sites to help you quickly find what you need. From U.S. Census data about the neighborhoods you serve, to federal data to compare your clients to national averages, data are everywhere. Check out our list of free public public data sources here.

SURVEY TOOLS

Surveys are one of the cheapest and easiest ways to get information from a lot of people. Survey platforms are widely available, and many are free or cheap (to a point). The world of survey platforms can also quickly get confusing. We can help you create and analyze a survey, or we have emPower Tools to guide you. Check out our roundup of survey tools here.

DATA VISUALIZATION TOOLS

Infographics, maps and other data visualizations have quickly become one of the best ways of getting stories across quickly, and with impact. Developing these on your own can be intimidating, and we can help you with your data visualization needs, but there are a lot of tools out there to help you tell your story with visuals. Learn more about our favorite free and low cost data visualization tools here.

Other Community Organizing Resources

Community Toolbox (from the University of Kansas)

Languages: English, Spanish, Arabic, Farsi

An immense (and free!) resource for community organizations working to create social change. From the web site: “Millions of people use the Community Tool Box each year to get help taking action, teaching, and training others in organizing for community development. Dive in to find help assessing community needs and resources, addressing social determinants of health, engaging stakeholders, action planning, building leadership, improving cultural competency, planning an evaluation, and sustaining your efforts over time.” Visit the Community Toolbox here.