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MGOs See More Pressure and Less Time According to Report

Major gift and planned giving officers feel pressure from and frustration with the time they have available for solicitation, according to a recent survey.

In Advancement Leaders Speak 2017, more than half of 270 major gift and planned giving officers surveyed responded that they don't have enough time to successfully solicit the prospects in their portfolio. Major and planned gifts accounted for the vast majority of higher education fundraising in 2016.

The Ruffalo Noel Levitz survey reports many challenges for gift officers. Respondents  did not frequently report using metrics aimed at tracking productivity, and they also expressed only moderate confidence with the wealth and propensity ratings used. Respondents also showed concern with the effectiveness of major and planned giving marketing tactics.

Other key findings include:

  • Fifty-five percent of gift officers said they don't spend enough time on solicitation.
  • On average, the gift officers surveyed made personal visits to only 52 percent of their assigned prospects each year.
  • The majority of prospects are reached through direct mail, email and special event invites.
  • Only 27 percent of respondents reported that wealth ratings were quite effective or very effective for focusing on the right prospects.

This article is from the July 2017 BriefCASE issue of BriefCASE.