Prioritizing your database projects

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If you’ve had your donor database for any length of time, you’ve probably got some funky, dirty, broken or missing data. You’ve also probably got some new processes and tools you’d like to implement. And you probably have far more data projects on your hand than you have time. When you are deciding what to tackle first, how do you prioritize?

At Fundraising Nerd, we use three lenses to identify where to start:

1)     Donor stewardship

This is the most important factor. Anything that is negatively impacting your relationship with your donors comes first. Pay attention to data issues that impact the way you communicate with donors or your ability to accurately track gift history.

2)    Reporting/analysis

Anything that is distorting your ability to measure and analyze your fundraising performance is a strong candidate for improvement.

3)    Effectiveness

Anything that could make you faster and more effective at what you do goes on your list of improvements.

When I am looking at a list of potential data projects, stewardship is always my number one focus, followed by my ability to analyze my data. Effectiveness is a close third. A lot of projects will hit multiple categories – if you’ve got an issue that affects all three priorities, then that’s a great place to start.

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Amanda JarmanComment