Whether you are curing children, helping the elderly, saving the environment or fighting poverty, your non-profit faces one big dilemma. The challenges you confront are equivalent and in some cases surpass those of for-profit businesses but the resources at your disposal (time, people and money) are painfully limited. Working out the same level of productivity with less resources prompts a nonprofit to one solution: Technology.
According to research by ‘The Center For Effective Philanthropy’, “77 percent nonprofit leaders said they needed help with technology to improve their organization’s effectiveness”.
The challenges of reaching out to donors, managing donations, handling memberships, handling cases and services and building deep community relations are ubiquitous across all charity organizations. For these and many such challenges, more and more nonprofits want to adopt CRM solutions that can adapt to their unique needs.
Why SugarCRM for Nonprofits?
In this post, we will discuss how SugarCRM proves to be a great solution for nonprofits by offering them a 360-degree view of their organization’s processes and provides them with a unified platform to manage everything from online fundraising to donor event management and from volunteer management to effective marketing outreach and results tracking.
Why SugarCRM, you ask?
One of the key strengths of Sugar is its adaptability as a CRM platform and this is why businesses in several industry verticals are extending Sugar to meet their unique business requirements. First, we will explore what SugarCRM can do for your nonprofit and then see how some non-profits have used Sugar to their advantage.
So let’s see what SugarCRM can do for you. You should note that this is by no means an exhaustive list of all the features/activities that non profits can manage using Sugar. In fact, we are just scratching the surface when it comes to SugarCRM Customization capabilities.
Manage Complete Donation Cycle
Pledging donations is one thing; making final payments is another. Non profits understand how hard the management of the donation cycle can get. For this reason, an effective system is needed which gives your managers the ability to follow up on each pledged donation while making use of the automatic notifications and automated workflows to escape manual data entry.
Moreover, there is no single way of collecting donations. Sometimes you simply collect cash donations, sometimes you are selling products (t-shirts, etc.), and at other times, your organization is receiving grants from big organizations. Managing all these different sources can be a cumbersome process without a system which provides you a complete picture of every donation and its associated information. This is where SugarCRM plays its role and gives you complete control of your donation management cycle.
Fundraising Marketing Campaigns
There are several segments to which your fundraising campaigns are targeted. This is true for both volunteers and potential donors. Reaching out to all segments requires effectively segmented marketing campaigns. Doing this manually or using ineffective software makes it almost impossible to run effective marketing and fundraising campaigns. Moreover, using two solutions simultaneously wastes a lot of time.
Sugar resolves this issue by integrating with great marketing automation platforms and web to CRM connectors. You can track the results of each campaign you run from either Sugar or the integrated marketing automation platform. SugarCRM integration with virtually any third party software makes all of this possible.
Moreover, with Sugar, you can have a single database of all your funds including peer-to-peer fundraising and online fundraising. This gives you better insight into what works for you and what doesn’t and thus, you can always improve on your marketing campaigns.
Case and Service Management
Countless hours are wasted by not-for-profit organizations on inefficient manual systems when it comes to case management. Similarly, if you operate a call center to provide information on your programs, services and events, a lot of time is consumed when you don’t have quick access to the required information instantly.
Sugar helps in this aspect by making it extremely easy to retrieve any information, hence saving time on each call. Having Sugar makes it possible to provide these services from anywhere at any time. This lowers the cost of service substantially and helps deliver the best experience to both the existing and potential clients.
Recruitment and Management of Volunteers
Non profit teams usually do not have highly specified job roles. A single manager might be looking into event management as well as volunteer management. Working in two or more job roles is difficult without a system that automates the tasks that you need to do repeatedly. Sugar lets you have complete command over each job role that you’re looking after and allows you to fulfill your responsibilities with just a few clicks.
For example, volunteer management becomes as easy as it can get. You can post volunteering opportunities, recruit skillful volunteers, gauge their performance and retain them all from your CRM. From a single screen, an HR Module lets you manage everything inside Sugar including recruitment, scheduling interviews, assigning tasks, appointing teams and viewing real-time performance reports.
Fundraising and awareness-raising events are an important part of any charity. Having an efficient CRM such as Sugar allows you to post new events, manage events calendar, track RSVPs and assign team members to cater to VIPs with great ease.
For effective event management, your team needs access to all the information on the go. This is made possible with a Mobile CRM App that ensures that you have the right information at your fingertips at all times.
A Single Window for Your Nonprofit
To succeed in your CRM strategy, you need to make your CRM work for you. This is only possible if it grants you complete control over each and every aspect of your nonprofit. A CRM should provide you with a single window from which you can essentially manage everything. This is where SugarCRM integrations come into play.
Usually, every successful non-profit uses one or more of these cloud-based apps/tools:
- Accounting apps like QuickBooks or Xero
- Marketing Automation tools like Hubspot, Act-On or Marketo
- Email outreach tools like MailChimp
- Payment Gateways like PayPal or Stripe
- Survey apps like Survey Monkey
- Social Media for better engagement with your community
- Online fundraising pages
It becomes a cumbersome process when you have to manage two or more of these tools individually for different purposes. A great CRM like Sugar integrates all of your tools in a single platform so you don’t have to switch between windows but instead have a unified system to make you more productive and in complete control of all your business functions.
Custom Built Reporting
The 80/20 principle states that roughly 80% of the successful outcomes come from 20% of the efforts. Your nonprofit is no different. But in order to figure out which 20 percent efforts yield the desired results, you need detailed insights.
Using default and custom built reports, you can easily visualize insights like which programs have the greatest impact or what types of events bring in greatest fundraising or which strategy is getting the most traction from donors. With Sugar, you can visualize your data stored from a variety of sources and unlock actionable insights.
This Is Where Sugar Makes All the Difference!
One of the key strengths of Sugar is the extent to which it can be customized. With Sugar, you don’t work with the CRM. Instead, it works for you. This makes it the best CRM as compared to other CRM software. Any CRM that makes you spend more time looking into its own intricacies and less time focusing on the needs of your not-for-profit organization cannot be the right solution. Contrarily, a solution should be chosen which helps you build and nurture lifelong relationships. Lately, we have seen some major SugarCRM updates that you must check out to leverage it fully. Do have a look at the new product by SugarCRM called the Sugar Serve and see how it can help you to tremendously improve your organization’s processes.
Some Nonprofits Making Use of a Custom SugarCRM Solution
Rolustech has previously helped several charities with their CRM needs. All of these have had unique needs and required custom built solutions on top of SugarCRM. Two of these are briefly discussed below.
1. House of St. Barnabas – London Charity
The house of St Barnabas (HoSB) is a charity organization which fights homelessness by supporting people affected by homelessness and social exclusion into lasting paid work opportunities. HoSB manages a members’ club to support homeless people in London. They confronted a lot of problems before approaching Rolustech to effectively manage their membership lifecycle.
Rolustech implemented a completely Customized Sugar to meet the needs of their charity. We integrated SugarCRM with Xero Accounting. Payment gateways including GoCardless and Sagepay were also integrated to streamline their donations processing.
2. Children’s Cup
Established in 1991, Children’s Cup is a non profit which supports throwaway children in Swaziland, Mozambique, Honduras and Mexico. Rolustech integrated Children’s Cup’s WordPress website with Sugar to create an information sync between the website and their Sugar. Moreover, to facilitate recurring online payments, Authorize.Net integration was done with their system which made it possible to store all the sensitive billing information while making the system PCI compliant.
Rolustech is a SugarCRM Certified Developer & Partner Firm. We have helped more than 700 firms with various SugarCRM Services. Get in touch today for your FREE Business Analysis. We will be happy to assist you!