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How to Optimize Blackbaud CRM™ Revenue Configurations for Your Organization

By Amanda Cose, Principal Consultant

When a donor overpays their pledge installment, does your organization apply the excess amount to the next installment or to the pledge balance? Does your organization auto-create matching gift claims for match-eligible gifts? If you don’t know the answers to these questions, fear not! They are easily found in your Blackbaud CRM™ revenue configuration options. 

Within Revenue in Blackbaud CRM™, you will see a list of configuration options. You likely determined these in your conversion to Blackbaud CRM™, but it is helpful to understand the impact they have on your business processes. As processes evolve over time, you may need to update these settings. 

Read on to learn about a few of the configuration options and their business applications.

Matching Gift Preferences

Every organization handles matching gifts differently, and there is no right or wrong way to do it. Matching Gift Preferences allow you to create some rules for matching gifts. For example, you can set a rule to auto-create a matching gift claim for any new revenue from a constituent whose employer matches employee gifts (identified through a matching gift relationship). This is one way to track match-eligible gifts and could be used to segment and develop outreach to donors who are eligible for a match but have not yet submitted the request to their employer. Alternatively, you may opt not to automatically add claims and instead add them once a donor submits a matching gift request with their employer. 

Also within Matching Gift Preferences, you can set the recognition defaults for matching gift claims as well as payments applied to those claims. The options here allow you to credit the donor only or create recognition credits based on the original revenue recognition. Be careful with the second option - if you opt to base your matching gift recognition defaults on the original revenue, the original donor will receive the same recognition credit they did for the original gift - which is often “hard” credit at many organizations.


Pledge Overpayment Options

The next configuration option has implications for pledge management, including reminders. Under Pledge Overpayment Options, you can specify how to apply overpayments (payments that exceed the installment amount due). If you apply the overpayment to the next installment, it will be applied to the next scheduled installment. If you apply the overpayment to the pledge balance, it will be applied to the final scheduled installment.

If your pledge reminders reference the installment amount due, think through which setting is best for you. For example, if you apply overpayments to the next installment, the next reminder a donor receives will show a lesser amount due. If you opt instead to apply the overpayment to the pledge balance, the next reminder a donor receives will show the full scheduled installment amount due. In the second scenario, your organization collects more toward the pledge earlier.

This setting may also impact your organization’s forecast, showing cash payments anticipated sooner or later depending on the setting you choose. Your Finance team may have a preference, so it’s important to include them in the discussion. 

Recognition Settings

Once you set your primary donor recognition credit type during conversion, it’s unlikely you will change it. However, some of the other options under Recognition Settings may change as your business processes evolve. For example, as you build relationship types in Blackbaud CRM™, you may need to update your default relationship recognition credit options, and Recognition Settings is where you would do that.

Some examples of using relationship recognition credit defaults might include:

  • Spouses receive recognition credit for each other’s giving

  • Individuals receive recognition credit for their family foundation giving

  • Corporations receive recognition credit for their corporation foundation giving

  • Individuals receive recognition credit for their donor-advised fund giving

Reason Codes

If your organization categorizes different types of write-offs, adjustments, etc., this configuration option allows you to create reason codes for each type of change. Under Reason Codes, navigate to the Revenue tab, and view your options.

In practice, some revenue adjustments are prompted by data entry errors, but many are not. A list of adjustment reasons codes might include but is not limited to the following:

  • Data entry error

  • Designation change

  • Appeal code change

  • Pledge installment edit

  • Refund

  • Returned check

(By the way, if you want to understand what triggers an adjustment, check out this helpful blog post).

Custom Revenue Configurations

Do your revenue business processes require customizations beyond the out of box options in Blackbaud CRM™? We can help! Please contact us to learn more.


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