One of our Advisory Board members called me and told me the following:
“When we hire a new fundraiser we give them a portfolio that consists of about 200 of our top donors. We expect that this brand new employee will contact the right donors, in the right order, at the right time, while asking for the right amount of money in the right context. And we expect all of this while only providing these important employees with a CRM that I still don’t really know how to use and an excel spreadsheet that we hope they can format in a way that will empower them to raise the money that we absolutely need to operate. That's a lot of pressure and, although I know it’s crazy, we go through the exact same process every time we hire a new fundraiser. Inevitably, after four or five months, that new fundraiser becomes frustrated by their lack of progress (which is usually the beginning of the end of their time at our organization) and the cycle continues.
Over the years it’s become painfully obvious to me that my fundraisers are working hard but they might not be focused on the right donors at the right times and consequently are not closing gifts as efficiently as they could. The question I ask myself now is if I drive fast but I’m driving in the wrong direction, will I get to my destination any quicker? No, obviously not and this is the challenge that our fundraisers face. They really need a road map that updates regularly to help them focus on the right donors at the right times. I think Gravyty can point fundraisers in the right direction from day one - you should explore this ASAP because we would buy that solution today.”
This was a powerful conversation that really inspired us. Here are some facts:
According to the Chronicle of Philanthropy, the average amount of time that a fundraiser stays at their job is 16 months. On the other side of the employment cycle, an article in the Harvard Business Review indicates that it takes between six months and a year to onboard employees so they’re fully integrated and are contributing members to your organization.
Amazingly, this only leaves between four and ten months of impactful fundraising per employee spanning over two fiscal years. Obviously, this is really bad for nonprofits that rely on these fundraisers to raise up to 90% of annual donor revenue. Worse, with NPOs losing almost a full year of fundraising per fundraiser every three years, it’s no wonder that retaining top donors is becoming harder each year.
As we’ve gone through the process of building Gravyty, we’ve gotten amazing feedback (like the call I had today) from our Exploratory Board of Advisors who are testing our software. They have unanimously confirmed that Gravyty has a clear application in helping NPOs onboard fundraisers faster while empowering fundraisers to be more successful closing gifts earlier in their careers. Nonprofits are desperately trying to find ways to onboard fundraisers faster, make them more successful earlier in their tenure and keep them in their jobs longer, and we believe that Gravyty is the first tool that can truly make a difference.
So, the next time you hire a new fundraiser (which statistically will be in the next 3-6 months), consider contacting us to learn more about how Gravyty can help onboard your fundraisers quicker and more efficiently so they can raise more money for your organization sooner!