You never get a second chance to make a first impression. That wisdom holds true for the WorkwithUSAID.org Partner Directory too. Your Partner Directory profile may be the first glimpse that USAID—or a potential “prime” or “sub” partner—has of your organization. You will want to make sure that it reflects key aspects of your organization and its work.
Follow the tips below to make sure that your organization’s Partner Directory profile shines!
1. Image is everything.
Sometimes a picture speaks louder than words. If your organization has a logo, using this as your profile image can communicate professionalism and can help you maintain consistent organizational branding.
If you don’t have a logo, that’s OK! Just use a strong, high-quality photograph (<10MB, PNG or JPG) that represents the type of work your organization does. For example, if your organization supports maternal health, you might use a photo of a mother holding her baby. Your organization may have photos like these that were taken at a project site. Whatever image you choose, make sure you have appropriate permissions to use the image.
Tip: We recommend that you do not use photos of individual team members or photos of meetings, conferences, award ceremonies, etc.
2. Tell us a story.
The “About Us” section is your chance to communicate why your organization’s work is valuable, including your mission, vision, and, most importantly, impact. Our editors recommend using at least 70-150 words for your “About Us” narrative. If you have lots of valuable information to share, you can go up to a maximum of 750 words.
A good technique is to draft your narrative in Google Docs or Microsoft Word. Then use the “Word Count” feature to assess the length of your statement, and run a spelling/grammar check on the text to avoid typos and misspellings. Ask key members of your organization to review the narrative to make sure it tells the story that you want to share with the world. Your “About Us” narrative is your introduction to other organizations—take time to get it right.
Tip: Do not include registration numbers or information about specific personnel, such as founders or chief executive officers.
3. Get social.
The Partner Directory does not currently have an email link as part of the organization profile (we’re working on it though!). In the meantime, if you want others to be able to contact you, you need to include a website address and/or social media links.
For some organizations, a website may be too labor-intensive to maintain, but organizational social media profiles can be created relatively easily. Consider creating a LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram account for your organization and then add the link to your profile. For professional networking, we recommend that you start by creating a LinkedIn Company Page.
Tip: We strongly recommend that you do not add links to personal social media profiles in your Partner Directory profile.
4. Complete all fields.
Anytime you neglect to complete a field, it could be a missed opportunity. Don’t forget to select your type of organization, any relevant socio-economic factors, and your partnership status, and to enter your headquarters city/country and all of the countries and sectors in which your organization operates.
5. Revise and update.
After you submit your profile, it will be reviewed by the Partnerships Incubator editorial team. If it is complete and meets our editorial requirements, your profile will be posted to WorkwithUSAID.org. If corrections are needed, our editors will return the profile with suggestions for further revisions. We are here to help if you have problems or need support with your Partner Directory profile. Just email us at email@example.com. You can also review our FAQ.
Remember, your Partner Directory profile is a live tool for connecting with others, not a static one. Review it periodically, and update it if there are changes in your work. You can log into your WorkwithUSAID.org account and make changes to your profile anytime. Make sure several people in your organization know how to log in and update your profile.
Since the Partner Directory launched, we have heard from USAID Missions and implementing partners around the world that the directory is a useful tool to know which partners are operating alongside them in a particular country and/or sector.
Your profile can showcase your work and your country- or sector-specific expertise and raise your organization’s profile globally. Make the most of it!