One of the best parts of my job is taking time out to chat with the users of JCA Answers. We obviously keep in touch during the implementation process and subsequent support and upgrade conversations, but we also make it a point to check in from time to time, just to see how things are going. These calls typically result in suggestions for future functionality and reviews of past projects. Along the way, I often hear about interesting ways that organizations are using Answers. I am frequently surprised to hear about usages we’d never really considered when we were developing Answers. Over the next few days I thought I’d share two such examples of JCA Answers for The Raiser’s Edge users who have leveraged Answers in unique ways for their businesses.
Today’s case is from National CASA, an organization with headquarters in Seattle and chapters throughout the United States. National CASA uses The Raiser’s Edge as their fundraising system as well as tracking [class participation] using RE [attributes]. They have more than a dozen staff members who have no reason to use RE other than to look up constituents to see their registration histories. While RE is a great place to store this information, being able to quickly look up a participant and see their registration history in a very simple layout was a challenge, especially for this group of users with no familiarity with The Raiser’s Edge. National CASA’s clever use of JCA Answers addressed this problem. Starting with a standard web-based JCA Answers Profile Report, they created a new report that allows users to look up a constituent and quickly see a list of their registration information. As it is web-based, the National CASA staff can access it through their intranet. While the source data is housed in Raiser’s Edge, the staff can get the very specific information they need with just a few clicks and without ever logging into Raiser’s Edge.
This example shows how JCA Answers can help users at one extreme of the technical spectrum: Accessing Raiser’s Edge can be made nearly as simple as a Google search for a completely non-technical staff. Next time, we’ll explore an innovative use of JCA Answers that helps users at the opposite extreme.
Jacobson Consulting Applications, Inc. provides strategic consulting to the world’s leading nonprofits.
JCA Answers is a user-friendly reporting and data analysis product that empowers your organization to make effective and strategic decisions.