Webinar Follow-up: Gary Green on Choosing and Using Fundraising Software
Earlier this month, FundRaising Success partnered with technology-solutions provider Advanced Solutions International for a webinar titled “Choosing and Using Fundraising Software: Tips and Tricks to Demystify the Process”. Presenters included Gary Green, vice president for technology at the National Kidney Foundation; David Drinnon, pastor and director of information technology and Web sites at the Second Baptist Church in Houston; and Dan Germain, senior executive, strategic business development, at Advanced Solutions International.
During the webinar, attendees submitted questions for our experts to answer. We got to many of them, but here are Gary’s answers to some of the ones that weren’t addressed.
Q: How many demos should we look at before deciding [what fundraising software to use]? What should we have done before checking out demos?
A: Enough to match your comfort level. If you’ve really researched the field and really know what your needs are, you may only need to look at three. If you aren’t sure yet, maybe many more. Often, online demos or demos on CD can be very helpful, too.
Q: How much should a nonprofit organization expect to pay for contribution transaction fees?
A: Unfortunately, the processing for a nonprofit and for a commercial organization are not much different, at least from a technology point of view. So you won’t generally find nonprofit rates from card processors, etc. However, sometimes a bank will donate the service, especially if the nonprofit is a client, or perhaps in exchange for sponsor recognition at a special event. I think generally fees in the 2.2 percent to 2.5 percent range are usual and customary; AMEX is half a point higher.
Q: Once an organization makes a commitment to donor relationship management technology, how long — realistically — should they expect to be in the training/implementation stage, before it’s all up and running smoothly?