Oct 28, 2013
While data is an incredibly important part of managing nonprofit fundraising efforts, many organizations struggle to understand their databases. As charitable foundations move into the Internet realm to utilize website marketing, social media engagement and online donation forms, they will see the importance of donor information. But it's not always clear how to clean that data and use it to improve the donation experience. Taking small steps to get databases under control will pay off in the long run.
Nonprofits struggle to harness data
AccountingWeb reported on a survey that revealed how nonprofits are unprepared to manage small or large amounts of data. This is a problem as using basic sets of data is essential to member management and fundraising efforts. If nonprofit organizations want to increase online donations and raise money for charity, they will need to understand their data processes better. Survey respondents said they are not satisfied with extracting donor information from their database, and they are unhappy with the technology they have to manage data.
Why data plays such an important role
Fixing data inadequacies and learning to integrate it will help the organization find more success with donors as well as overall management. Finances, fundraising, volunteer programs and more will all be affected by better donor information. AccountingWeb pointed out that there will be less redundancies in the system if data is cleansed, employee and volunteer roles and responsibilities will be more understood and future data initiatives will become much clearer.
One way to start a data management program is to recognize that data simply acts as a way to measure progress. Data analysis leads to actionable metrics, but only if that information is clean. Nonprofit Quarterly mentioned that trying out new techniques and then measuring them will lead nonprofit organizers to insight about donation trends and how to improve their efforts.