Case Study

Success Story | BBCRM Implementation at University of Arizona Foundation

Liz Murray

Director, Data Ecosystem Consulting

Liz works closely with clients to align their people, processes, and information systems to maximize fundraising and engagement activities.
June 04, 2020

With a new university president focused on technology and optimized business practices and plans in progress to modernize its fundraising and engagement information systems, the University of Arizona Foundation invested in implementing a new enterprise CRM system. The system would significantly expand the Foundation’s ability to deliver on its strategic goals while positioning the university to thrive in the Fourth Industrial Revolution.

Starting in 2017, the Foundation engaged JCA to provide implementation services to support its transition from The Raiser’s Edge (RE) to Blackbaud CRM (BBCRM) and supporting systems – Blackbaud Internet Solutions (BBIS) and PaperSave (PS). With more than 300 users across campus and over 64 million system records, the project was both expansive and complex to navigate. JCA leveraged its technology and fundraising expertise and past experience with BBCRM implementation projects to help the Foundation across all areas of the project, leading to a successful go-live launch in February 2020.


Pre-Implementation Planning

  • Performed an implementation readiness assessment to provide recommendations on critical process and organizational refinements, data clean-up activities, and resource planning to enable the Foundation to plan effectively and proactively address gaps and potential risks
  • Co-developed an implementation project charter to establish objectives, success criteria, scope, milestones, risks, constraints, and assumptions to govern the project internally
  • Co-developed a project stakeholder and communication plan to outline project team and resource requirements, assign staff to roles, and identify communication expectations to ensure quality representation across the Foundation and key campus partners

Project Management

  • Partnered with Blackbaud and the Foundation to monitor project health and control project performance and outcomes
  • Worked with the Foundation Project Management Office to establish project ‘swimlanes’ to organize and scale all of the Foundation deliverables and resources into manageable groups by subject matter
  • Collaborated with the Foundation’s Business Owners and Project Leads to create swimlane sub-project plans and schedules, and compiled them into a master project schedule managed by JCA
  • Led weekly project management calls with each swimlane and the entire project team to actively manage deliverables, budget, and risks

Data Conversion

  • Leveraged expertise around the original data source (RE) and the target system (BBCRM) to provide guidance to the Foundation on data clean-up/ mapping strategies
  • Worked directly with test leads and end user testers to plan and complete conversion validation runs to ensure the Foundation’s data was successfully migrated to the new system and mapping rules were applied as expected
  • Translated feedback into tickets for Blackbaud to centralize communication and streamline the review process

Business Process Design

  • Supported the Foundation’s Business Owners in redesigning and refining business processes to leverage BBCRM functionality and new capabilities
  • Developed and organized business process and data definition documentation to support knowledge transfer and decision-making and to archive project outcomes
  • Provided BBCRM training to testers to help them better understand BBCRM and the differences from RE, which in turn allowed for deeper participation in design discussions

Revenue Operation Support

  • Led cross-functional working team focused on revenue data conversion and business process refinements for this high-priority, high-impact area
  • Provided testing and requirements analysis support in the development of a Post to GL Integration between BBCRM and The Financial Edge
  • Acted as supplementary subject matter experts during peak gift processing times, freeing the Foundation’s resources without compromising the project schedule or deliverables

Blackbaud Internet Solutions (BBIS) Implementation

  • Leveraged knowledge of BBCRM and BBIS to implement BBIS concurrently, providing business process continuity across both systems
  • Provided strategic leadership on form redeployment to streamline efforts and reduce duplication across 300 unique forms
  • Worked closely with test leads and end user testers to triage and troubleshoot issues across business processes during end-to-end testing

As evidenced above, CRM implementation is a complex, resource intensive undertaking, but one that can have an incredible impact on the the success of your fundraising and engagement efforts. If you have any questions about CRM implementation, please email us at We are here to help.