FundRaiser Blog

The FundRaiser Software Blog is an excellent resource for nonprofit organizations looking to learn more about fundraising, donor management, membership management, and much more.

2 Situations When You Might Want to Consider Using Access or Excel for Donor Management


With the proper template (and there is one for nonprofits included with Access), it's not too difficult for someone with a modicum of computer savvy to put together a program to handle the basics of fundraising using either Excel or Access. However, remember that the fundraising world is not static, and neither should be your fundraising program—continuing maintenance could become a drain on your time and resources.

In our opinion, there are two situations in which using Access or Excel (or similar products) might make sense.

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8 Ways to Know If You've Outgrown Your Homegrown Software


In this modern technological age, even the smallest nonprofits are likely to use some type of software to help with fundraising. These fall into two general categories:

commercial "off the shelf" donor management softwarehomegrown or custom programs.

The homegrown varieties are most often constructed using Microsoft's Access or Excel because they are the most readily available products from which to create a database. In our many years working with small to medium-sized nonprofits in various capacities, many organizations have come to us looking for a solution to having outgrown their homegrown programs. This experience has taught us a number of lessons that may be helpful if you are thinking it may be time to purchase fundraising management software.

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In the beginning... how network technology change has effected FundRaiser

When I first created FundRaiser in prehistoric times, it was cutting edge (this was way before Windows), but time passes and things change, fastest of all when it comes to computer technology. Since those DOS days, enormous changes have occurred, many of which affect our use of single/multi-user vs. client/server for FundRaiser, which is what I want to talk about today.

For many years, FundRaiser has offered users the option of using either client/server or single/multi-user for network setups. Both worked fine most of the time on local networks, although client/server was always faster and more reliable.

Single/multi-user was actually a carry-over from the DOS version of FundRaiser. For those of you who skipped computer history in school, DOS was before you could use a mouse and before graphics or images of any kind could be displayed on the screen. You used only the keyboard to enter commands and data.
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Volunteering in Joplin - My Impressions

On Wednesday (June 1, 2011) FundRaiser sent a carload of volunteers to help with the disaster relief in Joplin, which is just 3 hours from here.  I was one of them.  These are my impressions…

We worked with a crew of about 20 from one of several disaster relief centers (I would estimate that there were about 200 volunteers just at this one, which was coordinated by the Baptist convention).  We were working on the outskirts of the worst of the damage – where there were still houses standing.  The houses might have lost parts of a roof, or had part of the house caved in, siding blown off, windows blown in, etc, but they were habitable and the occupants were there.

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From the Developer: What is FundRaiser Online

FundRaiser Online works exactly like the current version of FundRaiser installed on your computer. The difference is that you can run it from anywhere that you have internet access:  home, office, library, hotel room.... you name it. You can let board members or other people have access to it, and you can limit what they can do and what they can see in the program, just like with the regular version of FundRaiser. Read more...

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From the Developer: What is FundRaiser Online

FundRaiser Online works exactly like the current version of FundRaiser installed on your computer. The difference is that you can run it from anywhere that you have internet access:  home, office, library, hotel room.... you name it. You can let board members or other people have access to it, and you can limit what they can do and what they can see in the program, just like with the regular version of FundRaiser. Read more...

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