web 2.0

How To Handle Your Nonprofit's Technology When Staff Members Leave

You already know that your staff members are your greatest asset, and you've got a great group of people who are passionate about your cause. That's probably why you never want to think about that time when they might leave. But people do leave, and your organization needs to be ready to handle it. [More]

Three things that make your database painful to use, and how to fix them (Part 3 - Indecipherable Codes)

Do you ever want to break up with your database? Sit it down and give it the "It's not you, it's me," speech? Ever thought that it might actually be you? I've been working in the nonprofit technology world since 2004 and I've met many organizations who want to break up with their databases. Sometimes it's the database's fault, but sometimes the organization is doing things that makes the database suck. In this series I've talked about what could happen if you don't have any standards or if you keep secret stashes. In this third installment I'm going to talk about... [More]

Three things that make your database painful to use, and how to fix them (Part 2 - Secret Stashes)

Since you clicked on the link to this blog post, chances are you are having trouble with your database, or maybe you know someone who does. Well you aren't alone. In this series we're looking at three things that can make your database suck be less than ideal. Last time we looked at what happens to your database when you have no standards. Today we're going to look at...

Part Two: Secret Stashes [More]

Three things that make your database painful to use, and how to fix them (Part 1)

Some people hate their databases. If you are one of those people, it's OK to admit it. This post is a safe space. Having worked in the nonprofit technology world since 2004, I've met a lot of people who, for one reason or another, hate their database.

I want you to love your database.
In this three-part series, I'll be looking at three of the most common things that cause problems with nonprofit databases and CRMs - and how you can fix them. [More]

Bringing Rogue Databases Into the Fold: A Case Study

The Center for Youth Development (CYD), an organization housed within the University of Minnesota and consisting of many smaller units, had a lot of contacts and relationship data to manage. They tracked program participants, event registrations across many types of events, professional colleagues, and committees, to name a few. The problem was, every unit - and in some cases each staff member within a unit - had their own way to track the data. While they may have stopped short of labeling these files rogue databases, the Center's fragmented data management system was not as systematic as they wanted it to be. According to Dale Blyth, who was Associate Dean at the time, "As the programs and technology evolved, everyone found a solution. But they were all different and idiosynchratic, based on the staff member's expertise and history. We wanted to do it in a more unified way." [More]