Senior Director of Annual Giving and Digital Strategy

Posted on 12/16/2021

Grand Valley State University

Allendale, MI

The Senior Director of Development Services manages the information services support areas of University Development and directs the support and coordination of all information services for the division. The Senior Director plays an integral role in designing, implementing, and maintaining data and information solutions for the department. The position is responsible for creating and implementing systems and processes to ensure accurate gift entry, cash reconciliation, accurate and relevant reporting, and effective prospect research and management. In addition, the Senior Director works with all development users to respond to information requests and to enhance the value and use of the information for all alumni and development programs. The Senior Director will advance strategic insight that enhances constituent and individual prospect research and propels fundraising.

The role provides long- and short-term planning for development services, reporting and insights, and supervises the staff that processes gifts and manages data. Additional responsibilities include prospect management, prospect research support, scholarship and endowment management, financial reporting, data analysis, and data integrity for the division. In collaboration with various constituents, the Senior Director oversees the development of policies, such as gift acceptance policies, data access policies, and counting guidelines.

As a work function area that provides data management, data services, and other reporting, the Senior Director maintains close working relationships with liaisons across campus including Alumni Relations, Information Technology, Business and Finance, Financial Aid, Athletics, and academic departments.

Responsibilities – Essential Functions:

  • Lead the division’s data and information management/reporting function inclusive of gift processing, data analytics, prospect research, budgeting, and financial reporting.
    • Develop an annual plan and objectives for the development services area that coordinates with the entire division. Provide regular communication to directors and users about systems support projects and services.
    • Assume direct responsibility for all development systems and systems services in order to meet short- and long-range goals and objectives of the development division, and the university.
    • Direct and oversee the procurement, implementation, and maintenance of applications that support fundraising, gift processing, acknowledgments, and alumni and donor records assuring the proper allocation and accounting of gifts. Optimize use of its functionalities to support fundraising and constituent relations goals.
    • Establish strategies and plans for the maintenance, use, and development of information systems including new technologies that will directly benefit the users and programs.
    • Establish capabilities and standards for providing computer hardware and software support to the department that are in accordance with the university’s technology acquisition policy.
    • Direct and manage all aspects of data analysis and donor segmentation. Coordinate and develop analytical reports in support of the University’s fundraising efforts inclusive of individual, foundation, and corporate strategies.
    • Direct the recording and accounting of gifts and pledges and acknowledgements and monitor the timeliness and efficiency of these processes. Ensure that all gifts reconcile with Business and Finance, the Office of Sponsored Programs, and other campus entities.
    • Oversee prospect identification and research in support of major and leadership gift fundraising. Work with the Assistant Director of Prospect Research to ensure that strategies are developed to direct cultivation and solicitation activities.
    • Develop policies and procedures to support the University’s advancement work inclusive of gift acceptance procedures, data management policies, and financial policies related to accounting/monitoring of scholarships, endowments, etc.
    • Ensure timely and accurate regular reporting. Respond to ad hoc information and reporting requests. Work in collaboration with the entire division to advance and disseminate data insights that will drive fundraising success.
    • Participate in and advise on the division’s budgetary processes. Work with the Administrative Assistant to ensure that the department’s budgets, facilities, equipment, and human resource needs are met and in compliance with University, State, and Federal standards
  • Lead the development services team and liaison with partners across campus.
    • Supervise, train, and manage the development services team that has responsibilities for gift and biographic data, data integrity, financial reconciliation, and reporting; business and information analyses and reports, research and the development software system.
    • Develop and implement training classes for end-users. Training topics should include dashboard and other reports, all supported software systems, and the development CRM database.
    • Work with the institution’s central information technology staff to ensure that appropriate information is shared among administrative systems in compliance with industry practice and institutional policy.
    • Establish and maintain a high standard of service, providing information and user support for all alumni/development systems.
    • Contribute to the identification of strategic initiatives within the University Development Department, and work collaboratively with the team to increase support for the mission of GVSU.
  • Assume responsibility for other projects as assigned by the Vice President for University Development

Required Qualifications and Education:

  • Bachelor’s degree.
  • Three- to five years’ experience managing systems and support for development programs, or comparable experience in a related field.
  • Demonstrated experience in leading a professional team and office.
  • Proven computer systems experience, knowledge, and technical abilities to manage complex information systems and electronic databases.
  • Ability to communicate effectively and bridge both technical and non-technical staff.
  • Working knowledge of fundraising support services ranging from prospect identification through donor stewardship OR equivalent knowledge of the sales cycle/buyer’s journey.
  • Basic accounting experience and knowledge.

Preferred Qualifications and Education :

  • Highly organized with the ability to manage several projects at once and consistently meet project deadlines. Project management experience with technical products, processes, or services strongly preferred.
  • Demonstrated ability to plan and implement major systems and projects and provide significant levels of support to end-users.
  • Prior experience leading or supporting a CRM conversion.
  • Experience working with and directing staff in data management, report writing, systems management, and benchmarking.
  • A comprehensive understanding of Advancement Services as a functional area, including gift processing, stewardship, donor relations, customer service, prospect management, information security, and data maintenance.
  • Understanding and expertise in completing cash reconciliation processes. Comprehensive knowledge of accounting principles in relationship to IRS regulations and nonprofit GAAP.
  • Strong organizational, managerial, verbal, and written communication skills.
  • Self-motivated with initiative and a capacity for hard work within an intensely goal-oriented and complex environment.
  • Highest level of integrity and commitment to working across departments to drive solutions. Excellent customer service skills and a commitment to continuous improvement.

Salary: Commensurate with experience

Job Type: 12 Months Full-time Monday – Friday 8am – 5pm

Grand Valley State University has a COVID-19 Vaccine requirement that requires all faculty, staff and students to be vaccinated. New hires will be expected to adhere to the policy unless they are eligible for allowable exemptions or postponement. We will require proper documentation upon hire.

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