There are many types of organizations that can use a CRM (customer relationship management) software to simplify their interaction with the public and monitor crucial details about their social or commercial transactions and exchanges.
Nonprofit organizations are amongst the ones that need this kind of management the most, since they often have a huge base of people in their network, they move finances around and organize events, fundraisers and other initiatives. Transparency and efficiency are very important for the good functioning of a nonprofit, which shows how much a good CRM is needed.
Nonprofits already face numerous challenges trying to manage their financial and customer data. They need technology that makes their work easier not to complicate their lives. In this article, I will look at the unique challenges nonprofit organizations face and how Dynamics 365 can help address them.
What Is a CRM, Exactly?
First, let’s explain what a CRM is and what it does, then we will see how its features can boost a nonprofit’s activity and help it be more efficient. A customer relationship manager is exactly what its name says: software that keeps track of all your contacts and manages your relationship with them.
As a nonprofit organization, your types of contacts can vary, from online donors to donors coming to fundraisers, big investors, key actors in public administration, peers from other organizations you collaborate with, people who contacted you taking an interest in what you do, etc. As you can see, there are so many possible categories of contacts that you can gather in your network, that it would be a very good idea to have this information so well structured that you can create reporting tools, custom address lists, filtered actions, etc.
Knowing who the people in your network are, and what is the current status of your interaction with them allows you to make the best decisions on both short term and long term.
Here is a brief view of the most common challenges faced by a nonprofit and how the Dynamics 365 CRM can help them.
Types of Organizational Challenges of a Nonprofit
Here are the most common challenges faced by a nonprofit organization.
If you are financed through donations or your activity is raising funds for social and humanitarian causes, managing donations properly is a big challenge, especially if you are already reaching a large number of people. Donations are often emotionally charged, but also represent a very big responsibility. People who donate their goods or their money want to know that their value is put to good use by the nonprofit they chose to trust. A CRM like Dynamics 365 can help you in this regard.
Keeping in Touch with Donors and Volunteers
If you are a nonprofit organization, then you know that the donors and the volunteers are the most important “clients” you have. Without this ability to attract value through a common cause, nonprofits would not have the means to sustain themselves or their activity.
Keeping in touch with donors and volunteers is extremely important for a nonprofit. Dynamics 365 allows you to manage all your contacts and create custom categories for them. Starting from that, you can send personalized contextual messages to your contacts, engaging with them at a more personal level. This kind of management is very effective in keeping a strong relationship with the donors and volunteers, and convincing them that their resources are managed efficiently.
Streamlining the Grant Management Process
Dynamics 365 has integrated grant management tools that will help a nonprofit focus more on its mission than the administrative process. If you are a nonprofit, offering grants, you know how important and challenging it is to keep them streamlined and to monitor each individual grant.
A CRM like Dynamics 365 is ideal for managing your grants, from application to closing. On the Dynamics 365 dashboard, you will find great visual representations of your grants, trends, and processes that you can use when making your next decisions.
Tracking its members and their engagement is one of the top priorities of a nonprofit. By using a CRM like Dynamics 365, the organization has much more insight into the preferences and needs of its members, like preferred channels of communication, seniority, donor status, most liked method of making a donation, etc.
A CRM might be optional for commercial organizations making a profit, but for a nonprofit, I think it’s a vital tool. The reason I recommend Dynamics 365 is that it successfully covers the most common challenges for a nonprofit, and makes it easy and fast to monitor and evaluate its performance, based on the size of its network and how engaged are the people connected to it. Such a tool is affordable and it helps nonprofits organize better and function better, which indirectly supports their cause and helps reach their goals faster.