Now Martin and her team are able to do a lot of quick analysis behind the scenes with the new software and explore the data to answer strategic questions both individually and for the organization as a whole. The data team can then publish the relevant data for everybody and bring it to the entire organization — information like how many weeks before an event participants register so the marketing can be more targeted.
“We’ve been able to segment and focus efforts and resources more rapidly. Instead of waiting until the end of the month for a report to come out, we can see it mid-month. We can monitor in real time,” Martin says.
The dashboard not only makes the data available and accessible for JDRF’s fundraisers, but it’s also shed light on how important data and data entry are. Just by putting these dashboards on a screen, visually seeing how data interacts, Martin says, people understand why the data team asks them to fill out all those data fields when entering donor data.
“They see that if they do it correctly, they get more return out of the data,” she adds. “It was an unintended consequence, not necessarily a goal, but we saw that the data wasn’t as clean as we thought. This helped encourage clean data.”
This has all led to a more efficient donor data process, which in turn has helped JDRF’s fundraisers learn more about their donors — and send them more relevant, more targeted messaging.
Embarking on this process, JDRF has gleaned many things when it comes to managing and utilizing big data. Martin shares some of the major takeaways:
One size does not fit all. Not everyone is able to digest data the same way, and when you are a larger organization like JDRF, there are a lot of people looking at data. That means you must provide a balance between giving turnkey information to people who aren’t that data-savvy, Martin says, but then also giving analytic capabilities to those who want to dig deeper into the data.