New Researchers Symposium | Schedule of Events | Faculty

New Researchers Symposium
May 27-28, 2014



This symposium catered to research and fundraising professionals with less than two years of experience. This program covered the entire spectrum of prospect research, including web research, relationship management, prospect identification and analytics,  corporate/foundation/individual research and provided a new opportunity to network and discuss best practices related to institutional databases. New researchers learned about the integral role research plays in successful fundraising efforts and established connections with others who are new to the field. Participants left with additional resources to locate valuable information on prospects, staying organized and increasing their contributions to their organization.

The Role of Research in Fundraising 
Discussion of the role research plays in the fundraising cycle and how we are professional partners with fundraisers and organizational leadership.

Ethics, Risks, Confidentiality and Donor Privacy 
Discussion of the contemporary issues in ethics and privacy facing the nonprofit community today and review of the ethical principles of the fundraising research profession. Examination of case studies regarding best practices and guidelines for protecting donor rights, including how to manage day-to-day activities and establish appropriate guidelines.

Prospect Identification/Data Mining/Analytics
Review the essential components of traditional prospect identification techniques, including reading and extracting information from newspapers, magazines and industry journals, and conducting list reviews, industry or occupational analyses, and extracting and analyzing information from database queries. We will also discuss ways data modeling can be applied in the fundraising office, approaches to analytics, and the partnership between analytics and research.

Researching Individuals Fundamentals 
Discover the resources, methods and strategies for unearthing information about individuals including understanding what you need to know before getting started and how to verify basic biographical and contact information. Learn how to determine the best sources for finding biographical information, approaches for finding new prospects and how to equip fundraisers with meaningful information that promotes relationship building with prospective donors. Understand how to discern various types of requests and create customized reports and formats for relaying information to fundraisers.

Researching Individuals – Wealth Indicators/Capacity
Review sources for locating common wealth indicators such as income, real estate, public stock holdings and private company information. Examine other indications of wealth observed by philanthropic behaviors, political contributions, and private and family foundations. Understand the fundamental concepts and receive an overview of creating estimation strategies and rating methodologies for determining gift capacity.

Relationship/Moves Management
In this session, learn how to plan, record and report significant movements in the relationship between your organization and your prospects. Topics will include how to establish policies for portfolio accountability, how to manage and direct prospect assignments and tracking, how to coordinate prospect moves, how to establish and maintain portfolios for fundraisers, while working as a team and how best to communicate information that assists fundraising strategies.

Putting It All Together
Now that you have a basic understanding of resources and the principles involved lets go through the processes that is involved in researching an individual. We will through internet resources, printed resources and interactive discussion/engagement of how one would assemble a profile on a prospect.