Hi! I’m a brand-new mentor and I’m trying to help the business group on our team get more organized. What tools are other teams using to track activities/progress for sponsorships and grants? Thank you!
In what way are you looking to track? Progress toward a dollar value? Task assignment and percentage to completion? Labor hours for the robotics team and volunteering at outreach events?
We have used asana.com in the past for some project tracking. It’s a pretty slick interface. Google Drive is also really useful - just make a spreadsheet or form for input.
Google Docs is easy to organize a spreadsheet list of sponsors between multiple people.
We have started using Trello this year to organize our tasks .
Thanks so much for the feedback! We have tracked sponsors in the past in a spreadsheet in Google docs, but are looking for a smoother way to track who is doing what and what stages of the sponsorship process we’re at for each, down to sending thank yous and newsletters etc.
We would also like to track this against what our fundraising goal is for the year - which would include tracking progress of other fundraising activities that are not sponsor or grant related.
We’re going to check out asana to see if that fits our needs. I’ll also check out Trello too! Thank you!
I am beta testing parts of a Fundraising Toolkit before it is released out to teams later this fall. I believe this document is something you would be looking for. Feel free to make a copy of it and put it on your own drive!
You’re looking moreso for an Opportunities tracking tool with pipelines. This way you can see your fundraising in its stages and build pipeline reports on it.
Salesforce offers 10 free licenses if you’re a registered 501©3 - NE FIRST uses it as their backend for their heavy-duty pipeline tracking. Check it out at http://www.salesforcefoundation.org/
I also use Smartsheet at work for Gantt charting but they also have templates around Pipelines - https://www.smartsheet.com/sales-pipeline. That service has unlimited sharing as long as you purchase one license and is ridiculously easy to use.
Doing a quick search brought up Zoho CRM - which is free for 3 users and does opps. I’ve played with it and it’s not bad, but can have a steep learning curve.
I would also dig around the google apps marketplace and see what you like from there. Good luck!
I am fully behind the decision that we at NE FIRST made to implement Salesforce.com, it is an extremely powerful tool that will enable you to do pretty much anything you desire in the fundraising space (and beyond).
As Jessica indicated, Salesforce.com is the foundation for our operation and management - if it isn’t in Salesforce, it didn’t happen.
However, if you are just starting out… I would highly recommend that you start simple with a spreadsheet or simple database (if you are comfortable with databases). As you grow (and even in your first year), you will realize the type of information you want to track, and you will essentially begin to develop your “requirements” for a more advanced or sophisticated system or toolset.
Much like designing robots - start simple, master the core techniques, and then begin to grow and experiment.
And please share your experiences, selection and process…
Thanks for the salesforce.com information! The non-profit group I am part of needed software that did just this!
Thanks Jess! Actually Salesforce was my first stop as we use it at FIRST HQ and I love it, but our team isn’t its own 501c3 so doesn’t qualify. But it’s a great tool for those teams that do qualify!!
Thank you everyone for your tips. I’ll let you know what we end up using!
Plus one for Trello. As I’m working with others to get a new team off the ground, we have found it instrumental in keeping our collective act together. I can see many uses for it, from fundraising to brainstorming during build. (You know how everyone gets impatient to throw their idea out right after you read the manual? We now have a fix for that.)
The best thing is, it’s free for the very useful basic tier. You could get Business Class once your needs require it.
Curious if anyone has any additional ideas here. FRC #0238 (Cruisin’ Crusaders)
- what did you end up using? We are in the same boat and looking for a simple CRM tool that we can use to track contacts we have made.