Working Wardrobes’ strategy for the future looks to strengthen the core of operations in order to bring the largest impact and growth to the clients that need it. The nonprofit seeks to address the whole person — not just the physical tools that they need, but the emotional and relational tools as well. We believe that a healthy and diverse leadership and team will provide a cache of resources and knowledge that will reach every part of the organization. 2022’s strategic plan will hinge on four distinct pillars: sustainability, growth, people, leadership
Working Wardrobes will aim to maintain a strong financial position in order to help develop the workforce in perpetuity. The sustainability model of the nonprofit is based on 3 major streams: donations, grants/contracts, and social enterprise (retail stores). The goal is to increase sustainability in all three areas, keeping these 3-legged sustainability pillars extremely solid. In addition to securing Legacy gifts, those are planned giving donations, the staff will take great care to consistently demonstrate gratitude and appreciation to donors.
Working Wardrobes will sustain its operations through expanded and diverse revenue streams. 2022 will grow social enterprise revenue, identify new partnerships for higher-value donations, analyze retail pricing, and create a new digital loyalty program. The mission to grow fund development revenue will also include increasing monthly recurring giving. The nonprofit will grow cash reserves by ensuring it has a minimum of six months of operating reserve on-hand.
Sustainability is key because the more raised financially, the more lives Working Wardrobes is able to positively impact. “More money = more mission.”
Ultimately, Working Wardrobes plans to increase the number of clients served every year until 8,000 clients are reached every year starting in 2024. The nonprofit constantly updates in-person and online curricula and job training programs and will continue that work while also identifying the needs of the Workforce of the Future and then creating & providing programs that prepare individuals to meet those needs. Every relationship and connection with Working Wardrobes has the opportunity to expand the nonprofit’s ability to serve more individuals seeking to rebuild their careers. Whether it is an employer connection that leads to clients getting jobs, a corporate sponsor whose employees are inspired to provide coaching after a Corporate Social Responsibility day, or an individual who has a specialized skill to share or a source for donated product that we can sell in our retail boutiques and outlets – all connections help us grow to serve more people in our community.
Continuing to live the nonprofit’s values, and as one of OC Business Journal’s Best Places to Work in 2021, Working Wardrobes will continue to invest in the team. Workplace culture and total compensation are as important to the lives of clients as the nonprofit’s very own staff. The overarching goal is to inspire a collaborative, high-performing, mission-driven team. This starts by enhancing staff professional development to inspire retention with ongoing courses. In fact, the management team has already begun a soft-skill training program through USC’s Third Space Thinking Center.
Knowing that operations can always improve, the team will optimize and modernize processes so that they again translate to the increased ability to help more people rebuild their careers. Strategies include designing and implementing outreach and onboarding tools for volunteers and interns, improving volunteer recruitment and onboarding, and creating a culture of openness, inclusivity, and engagement.
In the Leadership focus area, Working Wardrobes will aim to grow the diverse Board of Directors to include even more of the high caliber professionals already dedicated to its mission. This includes recruiting new members with specific targets in mind. The nonprofit will ensure every position has a successor so that the leadership and support of Working Wardrobes, from the very top, is seamless. The Board will engage in generative conversations about BIG questions, and identify what it is that Working Wardrobes is world-class at, and then invest even more into that. Working Wardrobes’ Board will be defined by good governance practices and will ensure the nonprofit remains stable and secure.
All together, Working Wardrobes is strengthening Orange County’s community while rebuilding individuals’ careers. Join in the mission to make sure Working Wardrobes stands strong and empowers others with The Power of a Paycheck™.
About Working Wardrobes
Working Wardrobes is Orange County’s foremost workforce readiness nonprofit, providing the tools to at-risk men, women, young adults, and Veterans so they can achieve the dignity of work. Founded in 1990 by Jerri Rosen, Working Wardrobes has been serving Southern California for over 30 years by providing assessments, job training, career placement, and wardrobe services to almost 115,000 clients to overcome barriers to employment and achieve the Power of a Paycheck™. For more information, please visit www.workingwardrobes.org.