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How to...save time on admin

Working in a development or fundraising team? Chances are that admin is taking more than its fair share of your time. Find out how you can spend more time creating value for your community.

Many development or alumni teams are very small -  some even consist of a one-man band -  but still have to handle huge amounts of records and data requests. A lot of time can be spent searching through data that historically hasn't been organised in a format that is conducive to facilitating online or digital marketing, and often new staff can inherit data fields that don't fit into new systems. 

Data and database management can feel like an overwhelming and risky part of a development role, particularly when dealing with high-net worth individuals and representing your institution or community. The main pitfall of poor data admin is the inability to confidently account for a single source of truth, which is especially important when managing prospective or existing donor records. No one should be presumed to be an expert in data alongside their day job, which is why ToucanTech offers tailored guidance from data strategists as part of our basic customer service package. 

How can I save time on admin?

The best way to save time on admin is to have a database that literally works for you, by building the information held on alumni and donor records every time people in your community interact with your content, comms and events. Managing the system itself can also be a challenge, and if lots of manual input is required, some 'time-saving' systems can create more admin than they prevent! Instead, you need a system that is set up to make it really easy to add new records, match them to online profiles, and connect ‘the ask’ with the activity. 

"We've found the ToucanTech database and search filters so much easier to use than other databases, saving us time in a busy development office."

Marianne Bradley, Alumni Officer, The King's School Gloucester

When you join with ToucanTech, you will receive guidance from our data director Sam Bellringer, who boasts 20 years working to organise data in schools, to format your data in an easy and accessible way, making future admin an easier process. Storing your data in one, user-friendly, secure system will save you precious admin time, and with ToucanTech you can customize your fields, pick-lists, registration questions and permission levels. Powerful functionality also enables you to import, link, merge and clean records and run sophisticated search queries, mass updates and reports.  

If you’re looking for a database that does it all, ToucanTech’s clever CRM system automatically tracks email opens, unsubscribes, event sign-ups, connections and downloads. You can easily set up campaigns, allocate funds, log pledges, build detailed financial reports, reconcile payments, manage tax relief and track all donor communications securely in one system, leaving you more time to focus on building connections in your community through your content and opportunities. 

"We have been very busy at school during the COVID crisis, getting virtual teaching up and running, sorting out a key workers' programme and putting lots of great content up on HollesConnect. I can’t express how pleased we are with the new ToucanTech website; it has completely changed how we are able to contact our alumnae and our level of engagement is soaring." 

Jenny Blaiklock, Lady Eleanor Holles

Saving time on admin allows you to prioritise creating value for your alumni, resulting in a highly engaged community that is more likely to donate: a win for everyone. It also allows you and your development team to get creative with donor outreach, and channel your efforts into adapting your events programme for online delivery, as so many are in the current climate. 

We would love to tell you more about how we have designed ToucanTech training, customer service, support and data teams to offer the maximum assistance possible to new customers, including data reviews, migration plans, and providing guidance for anomalies in the data. If you're considering adopting a new data, community or communications system, but are concerned about this step, we can talk you through how we've supported community organisations that are new to software or data management systems, and hopefully reassure you that we will manage the process with you. Get in touch to book an intro to ToucanTech or ask any questions.

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