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What You Need to Know: Hiring a Fundraising Consultant

Hiring a fundraising consultantNonprofit organizations may consider hiring a fundraising consultant for large projects, such as during a capital campaign, but they may overlook the other ways in which a consultant can help improve fundraising strategies. Hiring a consultant can add additional resources to a fundraising team without committing to an additional staff member.

During strategic planning, team or board members may propose lofty fundraising goals that seem unattainable with the available staff. If a nonprofit is located in a geographic area where qualified candidates for specific positions are scarce, hiring can be challenging.

Fundraising consultants often work remotely or travel to a nonprofit organization’s location for big projects such as conducting feasibility studies or campaign management.

Hiring a fundraising or database consultant can help fill roles for specific project management, like database clean-up, syncing data between systems, or prospect research for campaign planning. Don’t forget that fundraising consulting firms should be carefully evaluated as part of fundraising planning and may be the answer to achieving great fundraising results.

Types of Fundraising Consulting Services to Consider

Four types of fundraising consulting services exist. These include a general fundraising firm, a specialty fundraising firm, a vendor + consulting firm, and a capital campaign firm. Each of these services can serve a different niche in fundraising efforts.

When hiring a fundraising consultant, ensure they have proven experience working with nonprofits and consider asking to speak to references when possible.

If choosing a capital campaign consultant, you will want a seasoned, professional firm to help raise major gifts and discover new major donors through tools such as a feasibility study or campaign planning. During large fundraising campaigns, the consultant may even be on-site long-term.

Fundraising consultants can help fill gaps in your team’s experience, raise funds, and elevate overall fundraising efforts. They may also help relieve stress from the fundraising team and provide insight and education to everyone involved.

Types of Database Consulting Services

Regarding database consultants, there are database consulting firms and independent contractors. Each of these may assist with projects like database clean-up, assessing a specific situation requested by the nonprofit organization related to donor data, or large-scale projects that the nonprofit doesn’t have the staff capacity to complete independently.

One common project is syncing data when a nonprofit changes its finance software. These projects can range from $2,000 for some basic data clean-up to $50,000 or more for large-scale projects.

Outsourcing Database Administrator Position

One growing trend in the nonprofit sector is outsourcing the database administrator position. There are several reasons for this, including a movement to remote work.

The database administrator role is becoming more of a leadership role because it is data-driven. However, it can be difficult to hire high-quality, experienced database administrators in certain geographic areas and to train people for this crucial role.

When a database administrator is on-site at a nonprofit organization, they only know what they know and don’t have a team to rely on to assess specific problems that occur. A database consulting firm has a team with years of experience to rely on.

With a database consulting firm, there is no downtime for vacations or medical leave. They can quickly process donation forms, recurring donations, and donations that come in through social media posts or landing pages. These firms have a team that serves as a backup for one another. This can be a significant attribute when choosing a database consulting firm.

Consultants can assist in increasing the fundraising revenue for your organization’s mission. Through clean data, they can assist your fundraising team to reach more existing donors or complete donor research.

To learn more about achieving fundraising success with the help of fundraising consultants and database consultants, check out this webinar: Hiring a Fundraising or Database Consultant – What You Need to Know – AskGenius.

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