Tag Archives: Audit Trail

GDPR and Consent in Raiser’s Edge

I have been really busy of late. While many an EU non-profit have been kept awake at night because of GDPR, I have not quite been kept awake but nevertheless been very involved in implementing GDPR into our products. This has taken the form of the new consent module.

If you are not in the EU or otherwise not on the latest version of RE7 then you may wonder what I am talking about when I mention the new consent module. I am not going to go into too much detail here as Blackbaud have some good resources that cover it here.

What I will say is that the implementation of consent is very different from many other modules in RE. Luckily there is less and less scope for RE7 API developers as Blackbaud moves towards NXT and expands the REST based SKY API. So I am wondering if as, a last challenge towards those remaining in the RE7 API game (myself included), Blackbaud decided to make the new consent module even less consistent than previous modules.

Here are a few of its features:

  • The consent collection cannot be found within the regular BBREAPI assembly. You have to look elsewhere for it.
  • It does not save alongside the rest of the constituent records but has its own save routines. What this also means is that the VBA events are not fired when a consent record is saved.
  • In the first release it does not cause an exception when you do not supply a valid combination of channel and category as it does in the UI but if you are really clever (or decipher the sample code), you can determine how to do your own validation.

Now I should not be too harsh on the BB developers. Introducing a new module like this is extremely difficult. There are so many intertwined areas that must be accounted for and I am sure that the design decisions were taken for a reason. (One of which being that it is much easier this way to work with very many consent records if they are a standalone entity)

How are we updating our applications to work with the consent module?

Audit Trail:

As you would expect changes made on consent records will be tracked but because consent records are saved as a standalone entity they will only be saved if the constituent record is also saved afterwards.

Validatrix:

This is a tricky one. We have included consent records as part of Validatrix but because they are a standalone entity and are open and saved in their own rights, they do not fire the VBA events that tell Validatrix to prevent a save. That means that a user can add a consent record and shut the constituent without saving the constituent. You cannot therefore have a consent record as the primary criteria. However, if you have the consent record as a dependency of a constituent based field then it will be included in the criteria when you save the constituent.

Importacular:

As you would expect, Importacular allows you to import consent records. You can match on any combination of channel, category, date, response and source to ensure that you are not creating duplicate consent records (although by default it matches on channel, category, date and response).

Chimpegration:

This is perhaps our most ambitious development. Until Blackbaud add consent information to query and export you are not able to export consent records to MailChimp. However it is probably more useful to export the outcome of the consent records i.e. solicit codes which show you a good picture of a constituent’s intentions.

On managing campaigns you can add a consent record based on the action i.e. if a subscriber unsubscribes you may want to add a consent record.

Sync is where the most complex piece of development occurs. We allow you to map individual groups and group items to the addition of different types of consent records. Equally when specific solicit codes are added (in response to consent records being added previously) these can be mapped to group items. We have a longer description of this on our knowledgebase.

When is this available? Importacular, Audit Trail and Validatrix are already live. Chimpegration is live for self-hosted and will go live in the near future for hosted organisations.

Performance Management using Audit Trail – slides available

For those of you who were at BBCon 2013 (and for those of you who were not) Mohammed Dasser and I presented a session on performance management using the Audit Trail. The slides are available here: http://www.slideshare.net/blackbaud/performance-management-using-audit-trail?from_search=1

If you have any questions about what Mohammed has done then I would love to be able to answer them but to be honest he overwhelmed me with the sophisticated use of Audit Trail and you would be better of asking him! That being said feel free to post your comments about the session or ask directly and I will try and get an answer.

Validatrix – Complex Business Rules with ease for The Raiser’s Edge

I am really pleased to announce that we have released our latest plugin – Validatrix. (Or jump to the fancy animation). It always bothered me how so many business rules built into The Raiser’s Edge were arbitrary. You have to supply a surname but not an email address. You have to give a gift amount and date but not specify which segment it belonged to when given (as some organisations would do by adding an attribute).  It maybe that somebody is a VIP because they give over a certain amount of money or because they are a specific type of prospect or because they attended a VIP dinner. You cannot enforce these rules in The Raiser’s Edge as is. You can, however, with Validatrix.

Continue reading Validatrix – Complex Business Rules with ease for The Raiser’s Edge

Audit Trail – with undo

I am really pleased to announce the long awaited feature of Audit Trail Professional. We have been talking about adding the ability to undo changes to Audit Trail for almost as long as the product has been around so I am really pleased that we are now releasing the first version of the undo functionality (yes there will more soon). The reason it took a while to do was two fold. Continue reading Audit Trail – with undo

Audit Trail on the Infinity platform versus The Raiser’s Edge 7

I was prompted to write this after seeing a tweet highlighting Altru’s history function. The tweet pointed to the Blackbaud Know How article about how you can see who changed what and when on a record. For those of you unfamiliar with Altru, it is one of the more recent applications released on the Infinity platform.

Continue reading Audit Trail on the Infinity platform versus The Raiser’s Edge 7

Audit Trail for The Raiser’s Edge – A new customisation (free too)

Zeidman Development are pleased to announce the release (well re-release) of our Audit Trail customisation. The Audit Trail tracks changes made to records on The Raiser’s Edge. The three versions come in varying degrees of complexity.

Audit Trail Free – tracks constituent deletions and reports them to a log file

Audit Trail Basic – tracks constituent deletions, additions and updates and records them in a table that can be reported on, filter by, sliced and diced etc

Audit Trail Professional – does all of the above but also tracks gifts, relationships, actions and participants.

All three versions tell you who made the change and when. They also tell you the previous values and the updated values.

Audit Trail no longer requires the VBA module – so the free version is truly free!

Check out an overview video. Warning –  it’s cute.

For more information including a breakdown in the differences between the versions and to download Audit Trail check out the product page on our website

Top Plug-ins of 2008

A few days shy of the end of the year, I hearby present to you the top visited plugins of 2008 (unless of course there is a sudden rush on any of them before midnight in which case the list will be adjusted accordingly). This list is based on the top number of clicks through to the more information about each plug-in supplied by each plug-in author.

Audit Trail
Blackbaud NetCommunity Integration
Bank Checker Solution
Clear Invalid Spouse IDs
Constituent Document Linker
Code Insert Custom Part
Convio DataSync Connector RE
ID Lookup
Action Reminder Updater
CanadianUpdateRE

Thank you to all that have added to the directory during the year and to those that have rated the plug-ins.

Adjust that tax claim at your peril

This is perhaps more of a rant than anything else but after being so pleased with the way Blackbaud introduced Batch into the RE:API I now found myself stuck with another piece of Raiser’s Edge functionality that I am less than pleased with.In the UK Gift Aid is big business. In the States (and possibly elsewhere) the donor can claim tax back from charitable donations. In the UK it is the charity that can claim the money back from the government for UK tax payers so this can amount to a very large sum of money if it is handled properly. There have been several changes to Gift Aid over the past four or five versions of Raiser’s Edge. One problem that was not addressed until recently was when Gift Aid had been taken in error and then claimed back from the Inland Revenue. If a gift was given in error then the Gift must be adjusted or written off and the Gift Aid must be reversed. If the Gift Aid was claimed in error (for example the donor was not a tax payer) then the Gift Aid alone must be reversed.
Continue reading Adjust that tax claim at your peril