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CiviCRM: A Top 10 Solution for Nonprofits

Sheila Burkett//Donor Management
CiviCRM: A Top 10 Solution for Nonprofits

CiviCRM

Idealware.org and NTEN.org released a study called "A Consumers Guide to Low Cost Donor Management Systems" in 2011. Idealware, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, provides thoroughly researched, impartial and accessible resources about software to help nonprofits make smart software decisions. NTEN  (Nonprofit Technology Network) aspires to a world where all nonprofit organizations skillfully and confidently use technology to meet community needs and fulfill their missions.

The report indicated that CiviCRM is a good choice if:

  • you are a tiny but growing organization, and price is critical
  • you are pretty tech savvy, and want a free system
  • you want to track all your constituents in one system
  • you need to integrate the system tightly with email and your website
  • you need something highly configurable

In a side-by-side comparison of key functionality, CiviCRM received the highest rating, EXCELLENT at:

  • Querying
  • Reporting
  • Payment and Website Integration
  • Customization
  • Integration
  • Product Background

CiviCRM was also rated GOOD at:

  • Adding and tracking donations
  • Managing donor information
  • Prospecting and Proposals
  • Permissions
  • Mail-merging Letters
  • Emailing
  • Tracking Events
  • Tracking other built-in interactions
  • Ease of use
  • Extent of support and training

Since CiviCRM is an open source, free software, your total cost of ownership is greatly reduced over time. Examples of what your initial costs will include are:

  • web hosting
  • software installation and custom configuration
  • data migration from old donor management system to new donor management system
  • public facing website integration
  • training

Examples of ongoing costs for using CiviCRM annually are:

  • web hosting costs
  • upgrades of software to new version (including testing and making sure customization still work)

CiviCRM doesn't limit you on the number of users, number of donor records, new events or eCommerce integration.

Read the full report from Idealware.