Accounting and donor management may seem on different ends of the spectrum, but when fundraising dollars start to come in, both teams need to work together to ensure those contributions are accurately accounted for and effectively managed.
Without a consistent data structure and a smooth hand-off between your teams, accounting can spend hours doing duplicate data entry and chasing inconsistencies, while the fundraisers struggle to provide donors with the accurate reports and proof of compliance necessary for strong relationships and repeat donations.
So, how do you make sure the two teams work in harmony? Fortunately, donor management and accounting processes and systems can be configured to support collaboration. I’ve outlined three major focus areas to help you maximize your contributions.
The Importance of Seamless Integration
It’s critical that the multiple systems handling different parts of the contribution process – online submission forms, a fundraising platform, and your accounting system – work together. It’s important to maintain consistent data across both fundraising and accounting solutions, so that all systems remain aligned. Here’s what you’ll need:
- Consistent Donor ID, general ledger codes, and payment information across systems
- Real-time integration between fundraising and fund accounting systems
- Appropriate access controls and scheduling to ensure every team member can focus on his or her job
Just as accounting relies on development for accurate donor information, the development team relies on the accounting system to ensure adherence to all donor requirements. Whatever the size of the fundraising program, tracking and managing donor details is essential to maintaining strong donor relationships. Manual gift tracking and other outdated solutions can leave holes in both the donor and financial experience.
True fund accounting™ tracks and enforces compliance with donor requirements, encouraging donors to give year after year or commit to ongoing gifts.
Planning and Managing for Spikes in Giving
Seasonal, event, and peer-to-peer giving can be major sources of revenue, as well as improve donor acquisition and help engage existing donors. But, I know many nonprofits struggle to keep pace with spikes in giving and incorrect data can pass unnoticed, causing problems later on. Strong business processes are needed to scale up during busy fundraising times!
If you’d like to learn more about how integrating your donor management and accounting systems could help your organization, we’ve put together a short paper that can help. “Maximizing Donor Contributions: Hand-in-Hand: Fund Accounting and Donor Management” covers the issues many nonprofits face while keeping up with money sourced from contributions. Want to ask our experts? Register for our live webinar, “Fund Accounting and Donor Management: Working Hand-in-Hand,” on Wednesday, May 30 at 1 p.m. CT.