Tech conference 2018 - CRM and Building Blocks stream

A new CRM and fundraising platform is one of the most critical decisions you will make. Hear from sector professionals on how they built up their fundraising department's engine room, and take away a trainload of practical tips to set you on the right track for long-term success.

The following are speakers in the IoF Technology conference 2018 'CRM and Building Blocks' stream

10.15 am Session 1

Dawn Varley

Dawn Varley of FPM Dingo:

 ‘The secrets of success for CRM (that no-one ever tells you about)’

About the Speaker: Dawn is a recognised sector name in terms of all things data, systems and fundraising strategy. She has spent time as Database Manager, Director of Fundraising and Marketing, Lead Consultant, Trustee, volunteer and of course donor, and understands business processes and strategy from all positions. She works to help organisations of every size use data and systems to maximise impact and income to deliver their mission. CRM is at the heart of that, and she has worked at and with organisations including WaterAid, Battersea Dogs & Cats Home, Christian Aid, Age UK and UNICEF in this area@nfpdawnv

About the session: CRM is talked about a lot, often by people who don’t really understand what it is. What isn’t talked about are the distinct stages of getting your org to CRM state (both system and culture) and how you need to ensure all stages of approach, from RFP to implementation to business as normal, include the ‘secret sauce’ that goes with it. Including people, processes, coffee, donuts, documents, agendas, notes, and of course the system approach itself, Dawn will advise on how to maximise your chances of long-term success and change, based on over a decade of experience in this area.

11.30 am Session 2

Iain Pritchard (Adapta) & Rachel Vincent (Christian Aid):

‘Benefits mapping, prototyping & other CRM procurement tools’

About the speakers: 


Iain Pritchard specialises in information systems solutions for charities and other not-for-profit organisations. He has more than 30 years’ experience in the industry, having started in a software house, before training as a consultant with KPMG and then holding senior management positions both in a number of high profile charities and in the commercial sector. Most recently, Iain was a partner with Sayer Vincent for over 10 years, where he led the information systems consultancy team which later became Adapta. Iain draws on his uniquely deep and wide-ranging personal experience of the sector to guide charities to develop their own achievable strategies for information systems and technology. His technical background means that he is able to combine a full appreciation of the technical and commercial issues with an understanding of the culture and context in which charities try to operate.


Rachel Vincent has been working in the charity sector for over a decade and over that time has developed a deep understanding of supporter-facing work. Rachel uses that knowledge to help Christian Aid with two of its major projects; GDPR and replacing their CRM. She brings her own experience of being an end-user and combines that with an analytical approach to systems and processes. For Rachel, relationships are key to successful projects, and she works to develop strong working relationships with people across partner organisations and Christian Aid, ensuring that staff buy in to new systems by giving them a voice in development.

About the Session: Recent advances in information systems technology have raised supporter expectations as well as enabling charities to meet them. Larger charities are leading the way with investment in CRM systems that can integrate with marketing automation and artificial intelligence tools as well as with some of the more established digital products. Christian Aid used a “Benefits Mapping” technique to establish the business case for what was going to be more than a new fundraising system and then employed a combination of “Business Process Mapping” and “Proof of Concept” / “Prototyping” as key elements in the supplier selection process. The session will explain those techniques - with examples - and will explore how the outputs helped Christian Aid make the right choices for the organisation.

14.20 Session 3

Alex Smith (Harrisons Fund)

‘How Harrison’s Fund Chose their Payment Processor’

About the Speaker

Alex Smith

Alex Smith is the Founder and Chief Executive of Harrison’s Fund, a medical research charity launched in 2012 after his eldest son Harrison was diagnosed with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy, a fatal, life limiting muscle wasting disease. Alex gave up his job in the branding industry to focus full time on raising money for, and awareness of the condition. Alex’s charity is known for its shocking adverts and brave awareness campaigns. He has spoken in the House of Lords and at Parliament on the need for innovation in medicine when the need is great, and alongside Lord Maurice Saatchi and MP’s successfully brought a medical innovation bill into law.

About the Session: Choosing a payments processor can be an overwhelming task for charities both large and small. Having gone through this process successfully Alex is keen to share the insights from Harrison’s Fund and point out the key considerations that other charities may not have considered when selecting their platform. The list of considerations appears to be never-ending including everything from CRM integration and gift aid processing to data ownership and donor fundraising.He will share his journey and how, since implementation, their platform has seen an increase in donations by 600%.

15.35 Session 4

Anthony Fawkes and Mike Guy (Actually Data) with Caitlin Ross (Think Forward)

‘CRM Implementation for Smaller Charities’

About the Speakers: 


Anthony Fawkes has spent over 10 years in database management specialising in address enhancement, data manipulation and deduplication. He decided to set up his own business and has spent the last 10 years working with data, specialising in database and CRM management mainly for the nfp sector. His services range from procurement of CRM systems through data strategy to implementation, migration, testing and training. @actuallydata


Mike Guy has over 15 years of experience working in the NFP sector  He has been involved in many IT projects at all levels and from all sides as the supplier, the customer and now agency. Before working with Actually Data, he worked as database officer for the Stroke Association, during which time he led the implementation of a thankQ system, bringing together 20 teams who had previously used independent systems. This project also included the data migration and integration with a Microsoft Dynamics CRM application used by the business. At Actually Data he is the lead technical consultant working with Anthony on migrations, implementations as well as needs analysis and training days.



Caitlin Ross is Performance and Impact Manager of ThinkForward. She creates and leads on all monitoring and evaluation, impact management and data solutions to track ThinkForward's performance against its goals and maximize its positive social impact for young people. ThinkForward prevents youth unemployment by placing highly skilled Progression Coaches in schools to support young people identified as most at risk of becoming NEET (Not in Employment, Education or Training) at age 14. 

About the Session: Actually Data will present the 5 top tips that they have learnt from running procurement sessions with charities, their 5 reasons why implementations fail and the way to manage and motivate your team and vendor through this change.