Best practice use of bar coding and scanning

Does your non-profit organisation use bar coding to scan response devices for the tax or Christmas appeals?

I give to hundreds of charities a year – partly for the FundraisingForce mystery shopping study and others for personal reasons. Very few of the organisations supported through the mystery shopping study or on my own use bar codes on response devices.

Endeavour Foundation utilise bar coding on their lottery mailings.

Bar CodeBar codes are generated by the organisation’s CRM and often times contain components the organisation wishes to track, including supporter number, campaign, designation, appeal, segment, package and other important metrics. Some organisations use bar codes for ease of data entry for acquisition campaigns. In this case, the CRM recognises who the person is, and the associated workflow creates a new supporter record in the CRM, and records the other components at the same time. Imagine the time savings for your supporter services team. Time which can be spent ensuring the donor receives a receipt within the required 48 hour time frame and time which can be spent on other matters.

Your non-profit organisation may already have the tools to create the bar code and a CRM which will consume the bar code. A little time invested in establishing the workflows in your CRM to manage the process described may pay multiple dividends in the long run. This time of year, time is money. Actioning this process will be a nice year-end gift to your supporter services team and…to your donors.