Before You Convert

As a donor database consultant, I’m often asked about database conversions and rightfully so.  I’ve seen the good, the bad and the ugly.  So, if you’re considering a change, here are some things to think through before you make a major change. What is the primary motivation for a conversion? …

Measure Twice, Cut Once

I grew up in a family of men who built/fixed things and women who sewed and baked (not to make gender stereotypes – just describing the specific people in my world).  The concept of precision was engrained in my head from an early age.  Not measuring or following the pattern …

Thoughts from the Jan 2019 Louisville AFP Luncheon

Last year, I had the opportunity to join the Greater Louisville chapter of the Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP). Getting to know more of the non-profit leaders in my area is a great opportunity to network and learn. January’s Greater Louisville AFP meeting was definitely no exception! As a database …

Baking Good Data

If I’ve had a particularly difficult day, you’ll find me in the kitchen baking bread.  For me, there’s something in the process of mixing the ingredients, kneading the dough and baking the final product that is relaxing.  By the time I’m done, I’ve been able to work through the events …

The Importance of Constituent Codes

Recently, I was asked by one of our clients (that shall remain nameless!) to create two reports with certain constituencies on each.  The information that they wanted was easily accessed by a canned report, so I attempted to use the filter to obtain what they wanted.  When I did, the …

Twenty Things to Love about Quick Letters

I’m a huge fan of using the “Quick Letters” Mail function in The Raiser’s Edge.  In my opinion, it’s one of the most underappreciated and highest functioning tools available in the software. Letters can be sent to Constituents, Relationships, Honor/Memorials or Participants. You can easily eliminate anyone with solicit codes …

Fake Phone Numbers

We all have our data pet peeves.  Some of mine include improper casing (you know – TYPING IN ALL CAPS or typing proper nouns in all lower case…), blank fields (it’s a pretty safe guess that someone whose name is Anna can be coded as female) and fake data that …