Melody Arnst, Administrative Assistant at Meta Peace Team, says her specialty is diving in and figuring out how to make things work better, primarily in the office. “That’s why I am working in the database. Things need to work and be streamlined there,” says Melody.
First thing as she started working at Meta Peace, she found herself untangling database issues. Meta Peace, FundRaiser Software users, had decided to give another donor database a try. “We attempted to move to Network for Good. It was a frustrating experience. As the process unfolded, I thought, ‘maybe we shouldn’t have done this,’ " says Melody.
“The decision to move to Network for Good was made just as I was coming on board a year and a half ago. It appeared when we first went into Network for Good, that it would be easy to use. In some ways it was, and it really looked good. But when we started the transfer from FundRaiser to the new platform, another side appeared,” says Melody.
The first issues showed up when Melody tried to get some help. “Network for Good’s support systems left a lot to be desired. It was a recurring problem. Every time I was trying to learn something, they referred me back to a video. I took their classes and it didn’t get into the nitty-gritty of how to work with the database and use it to do what I wanted,” says Melody.
“Trying to get someone to really truly help was almost impossible. I said, ‘I’ve watched the video, and it isn’t clear with what is going on. I need someone to walk me through it,’ but no one was available for that,” says Melody.
The final straw came when Melody began to prepare for a big mailing. “We found out that all our members marked as deceased or inactive in FundRaiser had been imported into Network for Good as active. I was extremely unhappy. Their technical support said they could create a field for deceased and inactive… but I was going to have to get the information out the previous database myself in order to use the field they were going to create. If I hadn’t still had the old installation of FundRaiser, I’d have been in trouble,” says Melody.
As a result of this experience, Melody started looking back at FundRaiser and saw that Meta Peace Team could do what they wanted with it. “I am not an expert and have a ton to learn, but as I started looking back at FundRaiser, I kept saying, ‘yes, it can do this… and it can also do this. It can do the things that we moved to Network for Good to do.’ So, we started making the change back to FundRaiser. Now we are using even more of the FundRaiser capabilities.”
“FundRaiser Support has been so great to work with. Having great support to call on is amazing. Recently, I was trying to sort my data in FundRaiser. I called FundRaiser Technical Support. I thought it was going to be complicated, but they said, ‘oh you just click here and then do this’… They explained the whole thing. I actually was told how to do it by a person and not told to go to a video,” says Melody.