Why non-profits work with a CRM system

When we talk about a CRM system, terms such as sales support and lead generation often come up. That’s all well and good, but does a CRM still have added value for a non-profit, such as a healthcare institution or a government? There are no commercial objectives behind this.

Why non-profits work with CRM

Although non-profits do not have objectives in the commercial sense of the word, they do have things they want to achieve. Like creating grassroots involvement. Informing citizens about a new change in the law. Involving tenants in the renewal of their neighbourhoods. Members who think about how the association can remain financially healthy. Or a healthcare institution that wants to know what the needs of patients are. A CRM system can be used to achieve these things.


Informing everyone about everything is like spraying with buckshot. You therfore choose your project, formulate a measurable objective and determine the traget group. Not a rock-solid guarantee of project success, but a good start, and the CRM can help. The system is used to select residents to involve in neighbourhood renewal. Or past and present patients for the hospital that wants to improve care. Framing makes it clear what you can use the CRM for. A good start is half the battle.

Relevant interaction

Interaction is important, but the sheer volume of information on offer and our urge to find out for ourselves online also present an increasing challenge. How do you still reach your target group? A CRM tool helps non-profits keep the relationship personal and relevant. Especially if there is a link to social media and other systems. This helps non-profits to keep their supporters involved and even to increase their size, because needs, actions or uncertainties can be targeted.

A study by Heller Consulting in 2012 showed that non-profits often have to deal with various systems and data flows that are not integrated. This poses a great challenge in creating interaction with their target group. Non-profits increasingly see added value in optimising the use of a well-functioning CRM system, as it helps them to improve interaction. It is therefore advisable to take a critical look at all systems and integrate them into the CRM where possible.

Targeted information

Non-profits that use a CRM tool benefit directly. They can alreay unlock a lot of information form the system. What is already known? For example, have people been involved in a similair project in the past? What is their relationship with your organisation? Has there been previous interaction and was it positive or negative?

What data are you still missing to make the project a success? Here, too, the CRM offers a solution. You can target people very specifically. It is precisely patients who have made complaints that can help the hospital to improve care by going into depth with them. Former members can be encouraged to join again or existing members can be motivated to recruit members for their association with a nice campaign.

Whatever project it is or whatever systems you integrate, the goal is to enrich the CRM system with relevant information that will help your organisation now and in the future. Whether you are a commercial organisation or a non-profit.