Growing a nonprofit organization relies on practicing effective constituent relationship management. Having a complete picture of your constituents, including donors, volunteers, and the other people that support your organization, is critical to your success. Unfortunately, this is difficult when information is in fragments, in different formats, spread out across multiple platforms, living in spreadsheets, on sticky notes, or if working with a ‘duct-tape’ system.
Worst of all, when data exists in silos, you miss a complete view, campaigns do not perform as well, you miss opportunities, and your mission suffers.
You may be using a duct-tape fix to manage your constituent data. Meaning, you adopted a quick-fix solution or work-around, and it works for today, but everyone is aware that it’s a problem. You’re relying on manual data entry, which takes a significant expenditure of time and is prone to errors, or you’re using native import tools, which often result in unexpected outcomes.
Unquestionably, the duct-tape way of managing constituent data isn’t going to be able to hold it all together for long – figuratively and literally. You can’t track the various dimensions of programs, activities, communications and provide the experience that your donors and supporters deserve.
Fortunately, with an industry-specific constituent relationship management integration solution like Salesforce NPSP Integration powered by Omatic Cloud nonprofits can easily “connect” multiple systems, simplify operations, gain greater visibility into their constituents, and deliver an exceptional supporter experience.
What is Constituent Relationship Management (CRM) Integration?
In general, CRM integration is the seamless connectivity and practice of getting data that lives in other places structured in a particular way to be consumable in your CRM. It allows your various data management systems to “talk” to one another, giving your organization a clear, more holistic view of your constituents.
In this post, we take a close look at five truths about Constituent Management Integration and the benefits of adopting a system integration solution like Omatic Cloud.
Keeps Records Up to Date
Data volume is growing leaps and bounds and has become unwieldy and difficult to manage. CRM Integration makes sure that your main CRM, like the Raiser’s Edge or Salesforce NPSP, is always up-to-date with the latest biodata changes. Changes include those found in names, addresses, emails, phone numbers, and related statuses and preferences – e.g., seasonal addresses.
Catches Duplicates Before They Happen
The expense of a database bulging with duplicate records is a waste of resources and can cause embarrassment. By effectively integrating, you can catch and manage duplicate records ahead of time, so you only add new records to your primary CRM system.
Imagine this: Your organization just launched a new email campaign to say thank you and drive more donations. Little did you know, there are three records for one donor. One as “Peggy James,” another has her actual name “Margaret James,” and a third has “James Meg.”
How do you think Margaret will feel when she opens her email and sees James Meg?
She’ll probably feel frustrated and disappointed. How can the organization she has been supporting for years not get her name right? And, if that’s the case, are they just as careless with the funds she donates??
Protects Your Data Standards
Protecting your data standards is an exhaustive task. You should be able to pull your data as needed without having to wait weeks to clean, dedupe, and normalize.
For instance, many supporters provide information that may not conform to the standards you prefer when filling out online forms. CRM Integration enforces those standards for you by transforming data to fit your criteria as it integrates.
Enables You to Master Proper-Casing
The data that flows into your organization comes in various formats and can quickly become a hot mess. Think about it, when completing a form online, are you taking the time to ensure capitalization is correct?
Frequently, data is inconsistent, and capitalization is all over the place. Some people enter their information in all caps, others in all lower case. Example: SUSAN ONEAL Vs. Susan O’Neal.
Normalizing this type of data can be a massive headache and consume all sorts of time and resources. But luckily, modern data integration solutions like Omatic Cloud can detect improper case errors that online forms miss, such as those who enter all lowercase or all uppercase. Also, it will clean up names like McHenry Vs. Mchenry.
Saves You Time
As you can imagine, manual data integration consumes a lot of time and is the bane of your team’s productivity. Alas, this time challenge will only increase as more siloed applications are onboarded.
Cutting-edge data integration tools allow you to step away from manual data collection and eliminate sporadic information distribution. You can spend your time and resources carrying out marketing and operational strategies.
For those organizations aiming to personalize their donor experiences, processing data quickly, getting back the time they don’t have now, and eliminating data-entry errors is what makes a CRM data integration solution worth the investment.
Conquering Constituent Relationship Management Integration
Data siloes exist in almost every organization. But there is an increasing need to step away from the time devoted to gathering and cleaning data. Organizations want to spend more time connecting the dots between donor data and building better donor experiences.
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Stacy Caponetti is a Marketing Manager for Omatic Software where she is responsible for monitoring industry and technology trends to help deliver value-based content for nonprofit organizations.