Consulting and Training

Consulting and Training

This is our highest level of service. We provide high level consulting and training for Raiser’s Edge and Education Edge users. This includes comprehensive database cleanup and restructuring, and conversions to and from Raiser’s Edge. We can provide training to any level and teach our clients industry standards and best practices along the way.

We help you understand what you need from your database and how you can get it. With Activist Consulting, your database becomes the central point for all your fundraising efforts. Our consulting and training turns Raiser’s Edge into the engine that drives your entire fundraising operation.

After 17 years in business, we know that there can be no one-size-fits-all approach to working with clients to achieve their unique needs. We are flexible in the way we conduct projects and can work to whatever level your organization needs, from a couple of specific clean up projects or training topics, to a complete database assessment and overhaul, followed by total staff training and ongoing support. Once we’ve identified what you need, you get a specialized project plan.

Often, we will get call from an organization who knows that their database is not functioning properly. Reports are a mess and no one on staff has sufficient training. They don’t know where to start or even what questions to ask. This is when we do assessments. Working through a full assessment toward a project plan goes something like this:

  • First we do interviews with all staff that uses Raiser’s Edge, and any other staff that has needs from the database. We ask what they are trying to achieve and what they need to do with data from RE. What is working, what isn’t. What seems harder than it should be, or takes longer than you want it to.

  • Next we look at the types of fundraising reports your organization uses. How are you summarizing funds in your reports? How do you look at groups of people? What are you using for reconciling, and what does that process look like? What reports would you like to see that you can’t or don’t know how to get now?

  • Compiling this information helps set us on a diagnostic path. After we have distilled the goals and shortcomings of your data set up, we can look through and understand why its not working well for you and come up with solutions for a new data structure that will achieve your data needs.

  • At this point the assessment/project plan is written, with time estimates where they are available. We discuss each item on the assessment and talk about hours, budget, and project duration. Then we get going on transforming your data and conducting the training sessions that your staff needs.

Our training sessions take place using your real data, on real projects, because we believe that is the best way to learn. Experienced professionals walk you through the projects step by step, answering all your questions along the way. We have found that this approach leads to higher retention of knowledge and skills, while accomplishing much needed improvements to your database.

We are always growing and adding skilled consultants to our team, with a variety of experience and background so that we can help our clients with all of their data needs, whether that is supplementing their data team, training their employees or staffing to meet their data needs.