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Fundraising assessments: 3 questions

Fundraising assessments are some of the most fun (I'm not joking!) and challenging projects clients hire Sarah J Consulting to work on.

Nonprofits harness fundraising assessments--aka fundraising audits--to step back and carefully review all aspects of their Development operations. Ideally, this process will identify strengths, illuminate weaknesses, and help determine concrete steps to improve results. 

Typically, organizations call on outside consultants to conduct fundraising assessments; as experienced and objective third parties, we often act as the proverbial fresh eye. We also make sure every assessment answers three key questions:

1. What's been done already to build toward successful fundraising? We review giving data for the past several fiscal years. We look at totals from various constituents--major gifts, foundation grants, and annual fund donors, for example--and we review the activities and steps taken to secure these gifts. How many appeal letters were sent and wh…

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