Top 10 most common trouble spots for school fundraisers:

1) What fundraiser?

Most district administrative team members are unaware of all fundraising efforts occurring at an organization. There tends to be a lack of approval process and lack of campaign management.

2) Where did half the money go?

Schools only keep an average of 50% of the funds raised from traditional fundraisers for products like cookie dough and gift wrapping paper. Parents are fed up paying for over-priced products and would rather just donate the money.

3) Sending kids into the unknown.

Parents are concerned about their children’s safety when it comes to selling products door-to-door.

4) Waking up to campaign fatigue.

Community members and businesses get frustrated with the lack of coordination of fundraisers. The unprofessionalism is viewed as negligence.

5) Cash is NOT always king.

Much of the theft, fraud and loss that occurs with fundraising occurs because cash is involved. Having children run around with hundreds or thousands of dollars is neither safe nor responsible.

6) The online fundraising (crowdfunding) train has left the station.

Online fundraising campaigns can be set-up in minutes and can generate funds almost immediately. Yet, very few districts have processes or controls in place to manage them.

7) You expected a report?

Making management decisions is difficult without data. Most districts don’t have the tools or experienced staff to manage fundraising.

8) Who is watching the cookie jar?

Most fundraisers lack a system of checks and balances to track transactions and deposits, which may lead to errors, or worse, theft.

9) Shift to credit cards.

People are carrying less cash. When students, parents or community members come to events, they want to pay with credit cards. Very few districts have a system for securely accepting mobile credit card payments.

10) Dude, where is my receipt?

Donors want to be able to write-off donations and have proof of payment. “Stopping by the school office” for a receipt is not convenient, and having staff email receipts is a waste of time and financial resources.

Whenever you mix volunteers with product sales, many things can go right – and even more can go wrong. From promoting the fundraiser to ensuring all funds find their way back to the school, fundraising could be a full-time job.

With an all-in-one fundraising management system, district administrators, schools and volunteers can enjoy the process and ensure their “customers” continue to support their programs.

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