“The Perfect Donor Management System Doesn’t Exist”

That’s the conclusion of one key missions staff person after having analyzed tons more than his weight in gold. Do you agree or disagree? If you think there are still some good options, just start a search for “best donor system.” In the meantime, please let us know your results by clicking the comment box that follows the web version of this item.

2 Responses to “The Perfect Donor Management System Doesn’t Exist”
  1. Charles Cherry Reply

    I would tend to agree. The “one-size-fits-all” approach of many software companies usually results in either way too much complexity or not enough. They all usually require an organization to modify its practices to match the software, and not the other way around.

    I am a software engineer by trade, and a volunteer director of a non-profit. I have analysed quite a few COTS (commerical off-the-shelf) donor management systems looking for that perfect solution that would meet our needs. I’m still looking.

    We started out with a custom Access database that I developed and maintained for several years. It did everything we needed, but I never had the time to integrate it into an accounting system, and that was a major problem.

    We tried a couple of online systems that promised to do everything we needed, as well as hook into the accounting software to eliminate double-entry, but they never worked out. They did eat up a lot of my time with data conversion and cleanup to match their system, etc.

    Right now we are just using QuickBooks Online, which does a lot of what we need but also leaves a lot to be desired.

    The fact that I know how software works and can troubleshoot issues has been a great help to our admin staff (i.e., my wife). I’m not sure how other small organizations get by without a dedicated IT person.

    I’m still waiting for the perfect solution, so hopefully someone will comment with that silver bullet.

  2. Patrick Wensel Reply

    I agree, so about a year ago I built one based off the design of Salesforce.com’s Non Profit Success Pack that many organizations now use for thier back office. I have 3 major mission organizations now using it with integrations into thier back end systems. I would love to demo it!

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