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Médecins Sans Frontières: Supporter engagement enhanced by data

Medecins Sans Frontieres

The developments that MSF and Valldata have implemented on the database have ensured we have real-time access to critical supporter data. This allows immediate response to queries and ensures that we continue to provide high levels of customer service to our supporters.

Louise Greysmith
Fundraising Manager, Médecins Sans Frontières

Medecins Sans Frontieres

The outcome

  • MSF rarely sends queries to Valldata relating to supporter details, transactions or fulfilment which saves both parties time
  • Valldata is able to reconcile all payments for MSF freeing up vital resource at the MSF headquarters and enabling the relevant departments to focus on other priorities
  • Supporters can be re-thanked and their queries dealt with even quicker and with ease, resulting in more positive long-term engagement

The team at Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) relies on Valldata's data systems to derive critical information about supporters and to manage the thanking process from beginning to end. This case study outlines the next stage in the evolution of MSF supporter services, the primary objective of which was to enable more efficient in-house query resolution, developed alongside a number of other enhancements.

As a result, MSF has improved query response times and eliminated manual reconciliation, resulting in the freeing up of vital resource and increased supporter trust.

The brief

MSF centres supporter care at the heart of its fundraising programme. Being able to respond to supporter’s questions and queries in a timely manner is extremely important to the MSF team.

The team at MSF uses Valldata’s in-house developed database module as its primary data-stream. Every transaction is managed in a uniform way. To enhance the system further, MSF wanted to be able to answer its supporter queries in real time and decided they needed to develop their ability to resolve queries themselves which was difficult to action at that point.

The solution

Extended Search Functionality
Firstly, MSF wanted to be able to look things up quickly. Not all supporters know everything about their transaction. They rarely know their supporter number and sometimes an address just isn’t enough. The search function has been extended, particularly around payment information.

Search History
Valldata has added the ability for individual users to look at their search history. Both MSF and Valldata use this a lot when dealing with multiple queries at the same time. This function can be used to search by URN or previous search criteria.

Merge Contacts
MSF manages a lot of supporter interaction and a lot of unsolicited transactions. Merging Contacts is a way for MSF to ‘clean’ the data where duplicates have been created in error. This ensures improved synchronising of databases and more accurate fulfilment of records.

Charity Voucher Reconciliation
Like most charities MSF has to reconcile payments and charity vouchers which often proves difficult as they can take a while to be paid. The additional functionality allows MSF to send Valldata all the voucher payments received so that the export flags them and MSF knows which vouchers are yet to be reconciled.

Bounced/Refunded Donations
Payments can be flagged as having bounced or as having been refunded so that the value shown in MSF’s bank account reconciles exactly to the value on DAT (Valldata’s reporting tool) and shows accurately on the supporter’s record.

Re-Thanking
Re-thanking makes it easy for Valldata to re-issue a letter. MSF uses this new function when a supporter has said they haven't received a letter and Valldata uses it when rejects are received in-house.

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