The world is changing too fast Industries have had to adapt to entirely new communication channels in a single generation, with several areas to consider. Some industries work for the world of entertainment. Others take care of the health of the population. But others work for the future of society by educating and dignifying human beings and giving opportunities to those who need them most. These are the industries that enclose higher education institutions and non-profit organizations.
For these entities to succeed, they need to reach the right audiences, connect with students and talented people in the case of universities, and have a proper relationship with donors in the case of profitless organizations. Identifying these groups can be challenging, and generating new opportunities is difficult. Therefore, it is vitally important that these organizations and institutions ensure excellent database management, hence optimal follow-up. The reality is that human talent is not enough. They can only achieve their goals when they get help from technology.
But how can technology help agents and administrators trust their data and get more donors and applicants to apply? In this blog, Plauti shares how companies in the industry can ensure they have reliable data in just five steps.
1. Know where the records come from
One of the many things these industries have in common is the excessive communication channels. This happens digitally and analogously. Universities obtain records when they attend fairs, offer talks at schools, get inquiries through digital forms on their websites, or when candidates ask for information at their campuses. And this still needs to change much when it comes to organizations, which still capture data through webinars, online fundraisers, and in-person agents, who still opt for the traditional duty of stopping people in shopping malls. These entities must have full knowledge of where the data is coming from. While this still does not solve the problem, it does help to have control over incoming information to lay the groundwork. It is, therefore, essential to categorize by naming each of these entries.
Having a native and holistic digital space helps companies keep all this data in one place. Cloud services undeniably required, such as CRMs (Customer Relationship Management). Entities need solutions that allow them to store large volumes of data. It is certainly not advisable to rely on something other than paper. Digitizing may sound time-consuming and complicated. However, using the right solution creates a better overview preventing possible drawbacks.
2. Validate the information
For agents to be able to provide follow-up, they need to have accurate data. They can make calls, emails, and letters, among others. While this human talent dedicates time to planning and decision-making, AI (Artificial Intelligence) ensures data quality. Platforms that read the records and verify them do exist. Many companies already make use of them. By verifying any data record from the beginning, entities can know whom to contact and how to do it. Whether semi-automatic or automatic, this creates valuable data.
3. Standardize under a single format
Records coming in through multiple channels will likely be presented in different formats. This used to be an issue. All departments within a non-profit organization or institution need their databases to communicate with each other — “Pears to pears and apples to apples.”
Standardizing records gives the data direction. This action saves agents time and effort. If, for example, a university works with student grades (GPA), digital solutions can handle a single scale, regardless of the country of origin, thus facilitating the organization and data reading.
4. Identical records
One of the most common challenges in the industry. In both sectors, having multiple contacts for the same donation or admission process is expected. Because several people are involved, detecting duplicates at the point of entrance is almost impossible using analog tools. In addition, opting for digital platforms makes reaching goals easier for the team and companies. Integrated solutions detect the existence of identical records in the databases and give you multiple options depending on the case (Delete, Merge, etc.). First, it will ensure that the data is good or junk before taking action.
A duplicate-free database guarantees that the business records everything discussed with the donor or student. This way, there will be no room for double versions or ghosted follow-ups.
5. Handle bulk data
All the above steps sound simple regarding one or two registrations. But what about bulk data entry? As mentioned in the first step, entities need practical, easy-to-interpret, and user-friendly platforms to handle bulk data. These make it easy for agents and administrators to search, organize and modify large volumes of data—especially given the volume of students or daily donors. In addition, this should be done in the shortest possible time without the need to jump from application to application.
In the future, organizations and institutions may need to upgrade databases or migrate workspaces. Besides the fact that it is not a safe option, jumping from app to app to run a job takes too much time. Valuable information is even lost in the process. Holistic solutions allow entities to perform all actions in one place. Giving them the option to customize the way they look and function.
Time to step forward
The steps to follow are clear. Technology places solutions at the feet of industries. The only thing that separates organizations and institutions from contributing to the growth of society while obtaining benefits is the lack of initiative and/or misinformation. A solution that enables a true customer 360 experience is one that will provide the answer to all data problems.
Trust your data by trusting technology.