One of the most common questions that customers ask is: what’s the difference between a report and a grouping? When someone needs a list of people, for example like a specialized mailing list for donors, they talk about needing a “report” of those donors. A lot of the difference between reports and groupings is simply a matter of terminology, so let’s break that down within FundRaiser Software.
A report is a list of people who match certain criteria. Within FundRaiser reports can be printed, exported to Excel or other formats, or simply previewed on the screen. The report is static and cannot be used with other functions. It’s simply a list for review.
Common uses of reports include reviewing information or sending donor details to others such as to board members. They allow you to count the number of donors, or gifts, within the list, as well as obtain other analytical and statistical information depending on what report you run. Reports are used for analyzing and reviewing information.
A grouping, on the other hand, contains a list of people in the database who meet certain criteria. Once the grouping is made it can then be used to export into a CSV of names and addresses to send to an outside mailing vendor, to create a report, or to produce a mailing. Groupings are much more flexible than reports and are a great way to maintain lists of individuals and organizations that you’ll use repeatedly.
When determining whether to use a grouping or a report, decide if the information is something you’ll want to use again. If so, then creating a grouping will be the most efficient way of keeping this list of people so you can utilize it in various parts of the program. If it’s just a single report, or single list of people, then most likely a report is what you’re looking for.
If you have questions about when to use a report instead of a grouping, or vice versa, please feel free to reach out to our support team.