They’re basically extensions of our brains where we dump all the stuff we’ll “do later” or need to keep “just in case”. They also hold vital information such as who donated what and when Mr Smith was last contacted for a donation.

One of the best ways to organise your data is to have it all in one place ready to be used as and when you need it. Preferably this should be done before you have too many spreadsheets! That’s why small to medium charities are so well placed to invest in a CRM system.

First things first, who’s working/volunteering when and where? Which volunteer has the right skills for your current project? Has the DBS check come back yet? What about expenses?? Ribbon CRM will help you to organise timesheets, match relevant staff to relevant tasks, keep track of holidays and more so your charity can run as efficiently as smoothly as possible.

How much money do you have and how long is it going to last you? Ribbon CRM can handle your accounts and calibrate your income from fundraising and other sources, giving you an up-to-date working balance.

Building Relationships
You’ve probably heard already that this is the best way of gaining and retaining donors for your charity and that’s why it’s the biggest section here. Ribbon CRM will keep track of who you’ve contacted and when you contacted them. Sorting between types of donor Ribbon CRM will help you to send relevant communications to people, and stop you sending communications to those that don’t want you to. With the opting out scheme proposed by the new fundraising regulator this will be extremely useful.

By building profiles of your supporters you can start to really get to know them and make them feel a valuable part of your cause. Retaining donors can be difficult with 3 out of 4 new donors never donating again and finding new ones can be time consuming and expensive. Using Ribbon to build genuine relationships with supports can help you to retain donors and make those donors more interested in your cause. It will also reduce some of the leg work in recruiting new donors by recording all the people that contact you into the system so that you can start sending them relevant communications straight away.

Efficiency/saving money
Squirrels may come out of hibernation in spring but we don’t want them in our offices! Ribbon CRM means that people can no longer squirrel away information in their own silos where it can get lost and forgotten, especially if they leave. It also means that data is entered once into the system removing re-entry of data and saving time. Tidy data, ready to be acted on and no more lost opportunities. With all your data in one place it makes it much easier to check that it’s accurate and an accurate database means maximising your campaign effectiveness and ROI.
Once you’ve got all your data secure and in one place it will make it that much easier next year!

Let us know about any data headaches that you have here.