Reviews (1-23 of 23)
January 06, 2020
My organization made the switch from an older, more basic database, to Blackbaud during the Summer of 2017. I was in charge of the process and the reason we made the jump was that the other database was too simple, didn't have enough functionality, or even multi-user access. Since making the transfer, the organization added more and more functionalities.
Read Steven Senft's full review
If you are a middle-sized organization, Blackbaud will offer you several options where you can find the right solution for you. Once you join the Blackbaud product line, I consider it very viable for you to jump up or down between the different products. Sometimes you may need more functionality or less. If you are a small organization, with little contacts, it might not be appropriate for your organization to make the jump to Blackbaud.
December 12, 2019
We use this CRM as our main database in our Philanthropy department. Our data department supports not just our fundraising team but our hospitals and schools as well. We are an academic hospital and university. It helps us track our donors, alumni, employees, and grateful patients in one location. While other departments (like student records) have their own software to store student info, the schools use our database (Blackbaud CRM) to pull lists and reports to communicate with their alumni.
- Queries and exporting is a breeze once you are familiar with the product. It helps us pull out exactly what we need.
- The integration of this CRM with so many other products and enhancement plugins has been vital in streamlining many of our processes.
- Some of the online products by Blackbaud, such as Luminate, do not integrate so well.
- When using complex/long/or multiple negatives in a query we sometimes are not able to get the results we intended.
Read Angel Quinn's full review
Blackbaud CRM is a great program for any nonprofit looking to jump into modern times and house their records in a place where they can be easily found, updated, organized, and data pulled for analytical purposes. It is a complex program but easy to use. It has many features that would help/apply to various non profits across the board not just hospitals or schools. It allows for membership, volunteer, and event tracking.
December 04, 2019
Score 7 out of 10
We used it to collect donations and donor information for our non-profit. It allowed us to store, categorize, and sort data across the organization in one platform.
Read Abbey Dufoe's full review
We used it to collect donations and donor information for our non-profit. It allowed us to store, categorize, and sort data across the organization in one platform. However, the reporting section left much to be desired. They are also hard to get ahold of when you need to speak to someone about your account, and they weren't very flexible in offering solutions to our problems.
January 17, 2020
Our organization uses CRM for admissions, the business office, and education departments.
Read this authenticated review
Blackbaud CRM is well suited for reporting! It is also well suited for. It makes it easy for multiple people to manage one student and is great at managing fundraiser goals. However, we had issues with our system during the import process, and phone accessibility is lacking.
February 27, 2019
Blackbaud CRM is "the" software for large and complex nonprofits such as universities, hospitals, and national organizations. It is a full-featured CRM that manages everything from mailing lists to planned giving to grant management with deep reporting potential. The major contribution to a well-managed department of philanthropy is transparent accountability for fundraisers, processes and donor communication. That said, it is not a quick, easy or cheap implementation. You get what you pay for, and I believe this is a great product.
- Managing a large development/fundraising team's goals and outcomes
- Working hand-in-glove with various types of fundraising activities: research, on-line, direct mail, events, grants, and planned giving
- Layers of security that enable user groups to get what they need and nothing more
- Reporting! Reporting! Reporting!
- The marriage of event registration (on-line) and CRM needs some work.
- Challenges to adapt to organization culture surrounding things like "naming conventions", specialized reporting needs, some bugs in roll-up reporting on couples or families.
- Tribute giving tracking/reporting is awkward.
- Better shared language of function between BBCRM and other BB products like Netcommunity and Raiser's Edge. Can cause some errors in the implementation process.
- Netcommunity functionality pushing data to CRM is messy and fraught with challenges.
Read Wendy Johnson's full review
Complex fundraising - Perfect for hospitals, universities, and large enterprise or multi-site nonprofits. Not an out-of-the-box implementation - Organizations must plan, invest, and dedicate time for implementing this CRM. Budgets should include outside consultants and/or Blackbaud specialists to help in every step.
January 25, 2019
Blackbaud CRM was used to help manage funding and outreach efforts with a client that was a medium-sized non-profit organization. It provided a wealth of features and was sometimes a bit overly complex. Organizations that are looking to grow both financially and with its membership base will find a great deal to like about the product.
- Blackbaud CRM works really well with large member bases and outreach efforts.
- The program offers great CRM fundraising features for in-depth marketing campaigns.
- Blackbaud CRM can also be utilized and integrated alongside other Blackbaud products. This can make the product highly desirable for pre-existing Blackbaud product customers.
- The product is fairly complex and powerful. The implementation process can be difficult if not adequately prepared for in advance.
- The product really requires a dedicated staff to support it as an ongoing effort. It's not something can be left alone after installing.
- Training costs can be higher than other, less powerful CRM packages.
Read Bruce Emmerling's full review
It's great for large marketing and fundraising efforts. It can be quite powerful with a number of tools to support larger sized organizations. For smaller organizations, it might be an overkill of features. Organizations or companies with small supportive staffing may want to stay clear as well.
Score 1 out of 10
We use it for email newsletters to donors, donation forms on our website and for data management. It's being used by our Communications and Development departments. It addresses the business problem of emailing our audience and allowing donors to safely make online donations.
- Personalization in emails
- Support articles
- Hard to use interface
- Outdated front end
- Importing contacts takes multiple steps, is not easy or intuitive
- Hard to teach others how to use Blackbaud
- Difficult to find what I need
- Very hard to segment out inactive emails
Read Debbie Gillum's full review
Well suited for a small non profit that is looking for a basic software to help with sending out mass emails and for managing donation forms. Less appropriate for teams of people, a large non profit who wants to stay up to date with marketing trends. Blackbaud is outdated, antiquated and difficult to learn.
April 24, 2017
We are pretty much a Blackbaud shop, using Blackbaud products for finance, development, and student management. The push to go with Blackbaud has been mainly to build as seamless an interaction as possible between the needs of those three departments. We are soon going to implement the next version of the finance and fund development software, and are currently implementing the worlds-of-difference replacement Blackbaud is developing for their student management solutions.
- Help desk. Can't praise that enough. As the main in-house resource for figuring out all things Blackbaud, when something "interesting" occurs their online chat is both responsive, helpful, and delightfully prompt.
- Reaching out to customers to get their input. Particularly in the past 5 years, Blackbaud has vastly improved their interest in listening to their customers.
- The interface is overly complex - intimidating for the new user. That said, they are working on improving that with the next generation. It will be interesting to see what abilities will go by the wayside in an effort to simplify.
- Setting up user access is complex, and not complex enough in some cases.
Read Petra Hall's full review
Blackbaud is very good for the finance and development office, but lacks some basic flexibility needed for a school: such as payment plans and the ability for parents to choose a payment plan, provide a credit card, and have the installments charged automatically. From what I understand, Blackbaud knows that is an issue and has partnered with another company to overcome it. However, it is not available in Canada: which brings up another issue. Blackbaud is US-based software. There are going to be compatibility issues, such as things that deal with banking.
January 15, 2016
Blackbaud CRM is being used by participating Federations (separate organizations) as their sub ledger for fund raising and overall constituent management. It provides the ability to have a comprehensive view of constituents and is customizable to meet additional needs.
- The user interface is user friendly, intuitive and customizable through security. Reduces the change management obstacle in training.
- The application is both configurable and customizable. This presents significant benefits in addressing unanticipated needs, once the proper resources, and training are established. Examples are creating custom reports, adding functionality, interfacing with other applications / platforms.
- Support and application enhancements. Blackbaud support is effective in addressing out of the box functionality and overall supporting customizations as well. Blackbaud's knowledge base and community provide several resources that can be leveraged in support and enhancing the application.
- As an enterprise application, I would like to see additional application administration functionality incorporated as part of the application. A specific example is providing additional functionality to address database maintenance.
- Additional report development tools to allow users (non technical) to create dynamic reports. Currently you can use MS Report Builder and leverage an adhoc query but believe this can be enhanced further.
- Surface the Financial Transaction Model to the application further. This would allow users to see revenue changes overtime better when reconciling revenue.
Read Salvador Orochena's full review
The Blackbaud Internet Solutions (BBIS) platform is still being evaluated as it provides external web presence (content management system), donor self service, event registration, email marketing, revenue processing and has an interface with the application.
March 04, 2016
I was implementing and training Blackbaud users at a non-profit client of mine. It was used as a donation and fundraising tracking system for a community college foundation. The system was very powerful, especially against the background of the client's former software infrastructure which consisted of an Access database combined with QuickBooks.
- Very flexible configuration options.
- Excellent reporting options.
- Tight accounting system integration.
- Learning curve steeper than other competing products.
- More expensive alternative to other systems.
- Social media functionality not there yet.
Read Laurence Sarner's full review
With Blackbaud you are basically talking about a system meant for a larger organization in terms of functionality and price. So, for example, a smaller non-profit would find the many features to be overkill. The Blackbaud platform is so flexible that it can really be molded to fit the needs of many types of non-profit organizations.
February 19, 2016
It is used in several departments within the organization, serving multiple purposes. It addresses the business problem of housing donor and prospect data.
- I like how user-friendly and intuitive BB CRM is. A new user can learn quickly, which is a useful strength in our department.
- I like the customization of the features. What I want my layout to look like can be different than my colleagues.
- I also think Blackbaud is great at allowing you to get only want you want out of it. With such a large database, the ability to drill down to specific data records is super helpful.
- Querying for data is a complex process- one that requires much time and practice to get good at it.
- We have issues with our system during the import process- duplicate records are not handled well by the system.
- We're only just learning about export definitions, but once we know more, it seems to be a much better way to organize data output than query.
Read Caitlin Tom's full review
I honestly have never seen an alterative, as I've been a user since I began working with my current company. That makes it difficult to give a specific scenario where BB would be better or worse.
June 01, 2016
Score 4 out of 10
The organization I was at used Blackbaud CRM for record management, processing of gifts, events, reports, etc.
- Support is second-to-none.
- Blackbaud CRM is one of the more customizable options. Since you can't always be sure of future needs, this is a must-have.
- It is one of the easier systems to learn. Many CRM options are cumbersome and require much more training. I had no issue training individuals with varied experience levels.
- As with most (read: all) Blackbaud products, the pricing is a bit high. There are other options that are significantly cheaper - which makes Blackbaud CRM a much less-likely option for smaller organizations.
Read Katalin Sankowich's full review
Honestly, I didn't hate it. Do I think that you can get essentially the same product for a much more manageable price? Yes.
April 19, 2016
Score 10 out of 10
Blackbaud CRM is being used to track and inform our advancement and alumni activities for our department.
Read Tim Ambrose's full review
- Blackboard provides great training for their products which is important when introducing new team members to the necessary software.
- Blackbaud CRM allows easy web access to our database which is important when out in the field for real time updates.
- Blackbaud CRM improves team time management by allowing the inclusion of important and efficient reminders.
- I have no feedback in this area at this time.
June 25, 2014
We use eTapestry as our donor database and as our moves management system for the entire organization. This includes the development department and well as marketing, mission services and our commercial services department, which has more sales functions. The main problem that it helps to address is lack of organized communication. With one search of the database, anyone can tell all of the activity that has been done with a constituent throughout the entire organization.
- Customization of fields is really awesome - you can do basically anything you can think of
- Report pulling is super useful and you can analyze any information that is in the database
- Mobile/remote access is particularly useful in our organization
- Reports can be tricky to get correct
- Mass imports are hard to get correct - you often have to refer back to the fields, which means you have to start over completely
- Sometimes, the system just runs super slow
Read Rebecca Armstrong's full review
I think a much larger organization (in terms of fundraising) might want something a little more savvy. We use a lot of different customizations so we find the software perfect for us, but a solely fundraising-based department might not find that as useful.
June 30, 2014
Score 3 out of 10
Our organization used it as the database for donors. We used it across the organization, but primarily by fundraising and marketing staff. It addresses the problem of storing and retrieving information about donors and prospects, and then using that information for historical perspective, as well as sorting for mail lists, invitations to events, etc.
- Plenty of space to add detailed notes
- Easy for different members of the staff to see the same information
- Can be used well by trained staff to pull reports for management
- Not always easy to use when trying to find a new function that one was not previously familiar with
- No ability to use via iPhone or other mobile device
- Not easy for remote users who are not inside the secure company network to print reports - too many steps to go through the VPN, etc.
Read Jeff Swan's full review
How easy is it for remote home-office staff to use? How is access on mobile devices? How easy is it for remote home-office users to translate the data into an email list or printed mail list? How easy is it for remote home-office staff to move straight from the Blackbaud database into Outlook to draft and send an email, and then have that recorded automatically in the database?
June 25, 2014
Score 6 out of 10
I was using a specially developed version for helping the Salvation Army deploy emails and landing pages for various corps.
- Constituent Management - It's a great database to store donor information
- Email Deployment - Since joining with Convio there are a lot more functionalities
- Landing Page Provisioning - It's a great place to keep all assets in one place
- The main area for improvement is with access for agencies. Seeing that Salvation Army utilized many agencies it was hard to make sure that assets stayed unique to one place.
Read Lin Wormley's full review
Budget is the main question I would ask when making a decision. It's a great tool. However, depending on what you have available there are definitely other options to consider. If budget is no concern I would look at a platform that is more "Engagement Marketing Focused" as opposed to just being a lower cost alternative that focuses on Non Profits.
July 08, 2014
CRM was used by my organization to hold constituent data and to track interactions, activities and financial contributions.
Read Kammie Russel's full review
I think it is an excellent product. Very user friendly!
June 24, 2016
Score 4 out of 10
Blackbaud CRM is used in the business office for financial data and our development office for fundraising.
- Geared for smaller organizations
- Has majority of fields to store data
- Needs to update system for speed in running data through
- Needs to update system to show new interface
- Needs more ability to customize system
- Needs to flush out purchasing/PO module
- Needs better ability to write custom reports and data fields
Read this authenticated review
More suited for smaller organizations
February 12, 2016
Score 2 out of 10
We are the philanthropic arm for a local community owned hospital. Blackbaud's Raiser's Edge was used as our donor database for record management, gift processing, reporting and events.
- Pledge reports are clear and easy to run, as well as a few other financial reports.
- Records are clearly organized with tabs to select your area of interest
- Record searching is all inclusive
- The platform for event management and registration did not work as promised. Data being imported was all wrong and had to be removed
- Poor customer service
- Social fundraising aspect did not work as promised
Read this authenticated review
We felt that this platform was built for a larger organization. They do not understand the smaller grassroots organizations and overlook our needs. Overall it was just too complex a system for our uses and the simple things- event registration linking to a donor record- did not work.
January 08, 2016
We used it while I was at UGA. They still use it [as] a broad based donor and constituent management database. It is used to track donor contact reports and giving information and a broad spectrum of alumni and donor information. It is used to run reports and in overall relationship management with key people.
- The product was very good at maintaining records and information. The information was agile and simple to retrieve and operationalize.
- The system is user friendly. We implemented across an entire campus and more specifically within a division with hundreds of employees. Overall people took to it quickly.
- The product I think does a more than adequate job of managing contact tracking which is key in all kinds of fields. This is critical because either for your own reasons, or as you depart from an organization, you are able to leave an accurate track record of your activities for the organization's continued success.
- Three words. Desk. Top. Queries. I advocated for this the whole time I was there. Was told that users querying information from their desktops would crash the system. Can't believe it. Product like this shouldn't have that problem and as a user, my job would have been made infinitely easier had I been able to query information on the desktop.
Read this authenticated review
We used Blackbaud CRM in a large scale setting. My sense is it would be better suited there than in a smaller setting.
April 08, 2015
Score 6 out of 10
Almost our entire organization uses Blackbaud CRM to manage our participant database for our clients' fundraising events, including event registration (teamraiser), donations, email campaigns and websites (PageBuilder). It is a one-stop shop for event fundraising and communications.
- It integrates your database, allowing you to collect registrations and donations online, and then build email communications and websites that integrate with those contacts, so you don't have to import/export between tools.
- It also provides tools for your participants, so they can customize their experience with your website and your communications, manage their own fundraising and participation, and conduct their own peer-to-peer fundraising efforts.
- Blackbaud's responsiveness to their clients reporting issues with their CRM is notoriously delayed. It often takes them years to address bugs, and if the issues reported are just "nice to haves" and non-urgent, they often never get addressed.
- The system has required significant customization on our end to make it work for us. While we've had clients who are smaller organizations use it right out of the box, if you are a larger organization with more specific needs, you're going to need a consultant or a IT department to help you customize the system.
- The help feature built into the system is not very helpful and often outdated, with information that doesn't reflect the way the system currently operates. (They are also doing updates but not updating the help.) The online trainings that Blackbaud offers are pretty superficial and often don't speak to the way an organization uses the system. I've trained myself to use the system, through trial, error and explore, and our organizations trains all of our employees and clients on Blackbaud ourselves. Blackbaud does not provide that.
Read this authenticated review
It's very useful for a non-profit organization with a fundraising event (or events, or a series). When choosing which modules to purchase, consider whether you will be using it for your entire operations (registration, donation, eCommunication, website). It doesn't fully integrate with social media yet, but there are many consultants and other organizations that will provide that customization.
December 18, 2014
Blackbaud CRM is being used primarily as a constituent management tool. The problem it addressed was the lack of a CRM that could record moves for individual and foundation prospects. It is not integrated with other revenue systems.
- Application is robust in terms of performance and lack of downtime.
- Application can be used after brief training.
- Application is powerful in that it can easily create constituent groups and the prospect management applications are strong.
- Great room for improvement on reporting capabilities.
- The foundations module is not worth the price, is very hard to use.
- The concept of research groups needs to be rethought, as they are very hard to utilize by users.
Read this authenticated review
It is not well suited for small organizations. It is likely suited for larger organizations that need all staff on one CRM.
July 02, 2014
Score 3 out of 10
I used it in the development department in a variety of ways:
- Donor information-donation tracking, contactable information
- Website platform
- Membership selling and tracking
- Managing campaigns
- Event registration
- BBMS (merchant account)
- Locked configuration strategy- if you have a high turn over, or an undocumented culture you will want to find a solution that supports change management. The config files are locked in Blackbaud which means some things you can't change. For orgs that have frequent turn-over this strategy is helpful.
- Blackbaud has tutorials online as well as classes in person staff can take. They offer certificates so supervisors know that staff have been exposed to a body of knowledge. When staff members take the workshops it is important to provide them the time to practice and use what they just learned. We purchased (for a high fee) a pass for any of our staff to take as many of the workshops as possible. We also offered this to key volunteers- as more knowledge makes folks more employable and more comfortable.
- Blackbaud has a very strong team of sales staff. Make sure you demo and that you know what you want. Fees are sadly complicated so use a spreadsheet. Once a quote is sent in writing my experience is there was very little flexibility in pricing. So your first call is really important. Do your homework.
- The Sales experience is rough. Be prepared. Write everything down. It is rough because if you are new you do not know what to ask for. You have the purchase of the function and the maintenance of the functionality you purchase. It is complicated and tricky. It is also frustrating.
- Costs are not consistent. Caution...you are on your own to set your limit or what you can pay, If you are not a techy and new or uncomfortable with negotiations you probably should involve others. Make them explain each line item to you. Do not sign until you know you have everything you will need to achieve your goals.
- There documentation is old school and lacks graphics, workflow and is loaded with text. I would like to use user videos with click through demos.
Read this authenticated review
A three as in not very likely. I have converted over to Salesforce. You will have to pay for each license and each functionality or module and my experience as a consultant is to help you get things to work well. With Salesforce you may still want an implementation consultant but you get 10 licenses for free annually if you are a 501(c)(3) non profit. Their documentation is easy to use. Additional licenses are more than 70% off and their Dreamforce conference is outstanding. My loyalty has moved to Salesforce Foundation. I implemented the same functionality for less than 1/2 the costs in the same amount or less time.
Blackbaud CRM Scorecard Summary
About Blackbaud CRM
Designed for large, complex organizations as well as federated and international nonprofits.
Categories: Nonprofit CRM
Blackbaud CRM Technical Details