Intro to CRM Resources

These resources were originally intended to supplement the Intro to Data workshop given by Jack Aponte, theory practice and Jon Goldberg to grantees of the NYC Capacity Building Collaborative in December 2015.

Workshop Slides

You can download the slides as a PDF document or in the Open Document (ODP) format.  You can open the ODP file with Microsoft Powerpoint 2010 or later, or using LibreOffice, an open source office suite that you can download and use for free.

CiviCRM & PowerBase

Palante Tech usually recommends CiviCRM or the community-organizing-centric PowerBase, which was demonstrated during the workshop, to nonprofits and community organizations. Those are also the tools that we implement ourselves.


10 Things To Consider in a CRM
Laura Quinn, October 2014. A must-read for those considering a jump to a CRM, or who don't feel like they've fully realized the potential of their CRM.

A Few Good Constituent Relationship Management Tools
Eliabeth Pope, 2013.  This short article from Idealware discusses specific CRM tools, and the price you might expect to pay for each.

A Grassroots Fundraiser's Guide to Choosing a Donor Database
Jonathan Goldberg, July 2013.  A beginner's guide to choosing a CRM, with a focus on the needs of grassroots organizing groups and on donor management in particular.

Social Source Commons: CRM tools
Organized by Aspiration Technology, this site is for non-profits to share the tech tools their organization uses.  Very helpful is the ability to see how many "toolboxes" a tool is in!

Ten Common Mistakes in Selecting Donor Databases (And How to Avoid Them)
Robert Weiner, 2012. An excellent primer for the CRM selection process.  This is applicable to all CRMs and not just donor databases.

2011 Nonprofit Data Ecosystem Report
The Nonprofit Technology Network (NTEN) surveyed many nonprofit organizations about their data management tools and compiled this report to give nonprofits "a resource for helping make better software selection decisions." The report provides a great deal of information on each tool covered, including many of the tools that we discussed in the workshop: how many organizations are using them, what they're using them for, and how happy they are with them. The report is presented as a downloadable PDF and is free for members of NTEN and $50 for non-members.

In Search of CRM Part 1: Understanding Constituents and Processes and In Search of CRM Part 2: Searching for Software
Two great articles from Paul Hagen for Idealware that explore issues behind CRM. Though they're written in 2007, they're still very relevant and helpful! Just understand that specific software descriptions or recommendations in older articles might not be up-to-date.

Creating the Relationship-Centric Organization: Nonprofit CRM
Another great article for Idealware by Paul Hagen. This one is from 2006 but again includes some very handy and still-relevant information.

Cheap, Fast, and Good. Can Nonprofits have them All?
An article from Michelle Murrain in which she discusses the "Cheap, fast, good: pick any two!" concept that we discussed in the workshop. Good food for thought when going into any software implementation project, including CRM.

Aspiration Tech's How to Write a Nonprofit RFP webinar recording and RFP Template
These great free resources from Aspiration Tech can help you write an RFP that will get your organization's real needs met. Also check out their free services for nonprofits, which include price checks and quickie proposal reviews that help you gauge whether proposals that you receive are reasonable.

Indexes of nonprofit CRM related posts from various sources: