Database — Do You Use It?

There is a lot of chatter in organizing movements about data, how to use it, where to store it, and what to track. Hundreds of different systems exist that help organizations manage data (as well other aspects of organizing work) at different price points.

Navigating these systems isn’t easy and of course, you can probably already tell that NationBuilder is our go-to choice.

The reason for that is price-point and user-functionality. A lot of cool tools out there help staff do their best work but it can be hard convert to new systems when the old one is doing “okay.”

One key project that we helped the Alberta Federation of Labour with was converting to NationBuilder from Expression Engine. This wasn’t just a data dump from one platform to another, we worked with the AFL team and provided a full-scale training initiative to ensure all staff knew how to operate the new system.

Buy In

There is absolutely no reason to convert to a new system unless the entire staff is ready to buy in.

What’s the point of working on a new platform if Glen is going to keep updating his donor file in an Excel spreadsheet that lives on his computer, and his computer alone?

When it comes to institutional memory Glen’s ensured that as an organization you’re hooped.

Leaving fictional Glen aside and going back to the AFL…

Building a New System

Expression Engine had proved to be very clunky and inflexible which is why we began to move the data, email and calendar, and workflow over to NationBuilder.

Since campaigning doesn’t stop, nor do the daily tasks of the average office, so we arranged a time that was most suitable for the AFL to do in-house training with them.


For three days, we worked with staff get the new database system and backend of their website up and running. From updating content to tracking membership, to building a fully functional calendar the staff was empowered to convert completely onto the new system, knowing that we were just a phone call or email away to help them out if they had more questions.

Online tutorials and webinars aren’t always the best way forward for many staff teams — so let us build a custom training that will work with your staff where they are, at all levels of ability.

Looking for a better data management tool? Let’s talk options.


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