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Author: Kristenson, Joel
Last Updated: 2017-05-22
This article will teach you how to setup a new pledge (which can be a single or recurring payment pledge) in a donor’s record. Then it walks through the steps to apply payments (donations) to open pledges from the Contributions list.
The article also touches on how to search for donors who have unpaid pledges, and view detailed pledge reports in the Pledge Details list.
Tip: Prefer video? This short video tutorial shows how to apply payments (donations) to open pledges.
#1 Create a New Pledge in a Donor’s Record Card
#2 Applying Donations to Open Pledges from the ‘Contributions List’ (Single Apply & Mass Apply)
#3 Running Reports for Donors with Unpaid Pledges, and Pledge Detail Reports
#4 Related Resources
#1 – Create a New Pledge in a Donor’s Record Card
Navigate to the Contacts (Donors/Voters) list.
Search for and open the donor’s record you want to create a new pledge for. Or create a new donor record if they don’t exist – my example is below.
Navigate to the Pledge tab and click the [+ New] button.
Tip: It’s very useful to link the pledge to an ‘event’ (the source), to accurately track where the pledge came from, and then link the donation (payment) to the same ‘event’. The example used in this tutorial was an event called ‘2017 Pledge Drive (Direct Mail)’:
Fill out the pledge input form (single payment or multiple payment, amount, first payment due date, the event, etc.), and then click [OK]. My example is below for a $1,200,000.00 pledge broken into 12 months that came from the 2017 Pledge Drive (Direct Mail) event.
After creating the pledge you can view the details under the Payment Schedule tab. My example is below.
You can make further adjustments under the Summary tab.
One common change is the date of the pledge (which is the original pledge date, not the due date). It’s common to change this if you are backfilling data and the person pledged prior to the date you are entering it. It’s critical you enter the pledge date prior to the contribution date or it won’t apply correctly when the payment (donation) comes in.
You can add special instructions under the Special Instructions tab. My example is below.
When the payment (donation) for a pledge comes in, open the donor’s record card, navigate to the Contribute tab, and click the [+ New] button.
Fill out the donation input form and click [Save and Close]. If your pledge is linked to an event, make sure the donation is linked to the same event. The donation date must come after the pledge date. My example is below.
Close out of the donor’s record card before proceeding to apply the donation towards the open pledge. The process won’t work if the donor’s record card is open. If you’re going to mass apply multiple donations make sure all of the donor’s records are closed. This article shows how to mass ‘unlock’ donor records.
The next section walks through the steps to apply a single donation to an open pledge and how to apply a list of donations to open pledges en masse.
#2 – Applying Donations to Open Pledges from the ‘Contributions List’ (Single Apply & Mass Apply)
Navigate to the Contributions list under the Application Menu.
Run a search query for the donation you want to apply to an open pledge.
Some common examples would be by date or by the donor’s name. The columns for open pledge amount, and amount applied will display by default. In this example I searched by the donor’s name and they currently had one donation present.
Click the [Apply to Pledges] button at the top of the screen.
By default a box will be checked to enforce strict event assignment between pledges and donations. Typically you’ll leave this checked *unless your donation and pledge have different events recorded, or one has an event linked and the other doesn’t and you still need them to apply.
Click [OK] to proceed. In my example the pledge and donation had matching events (which is the most common).
Click [OK] once the operation has finished.
Back in the Contributions list, click [Search] to refresh the list and the amount applied values for pledges will update.
Run a search query for a list of donations and click the [Apply to Pledges] button at the top of the screen. The system will only apply donations where applicable so it’s quite likely there will be some donations that populate your list that won’t apply to open pledges. In this example I searched for all donations since 1/1/2016 which produced 114 results.
Choose your option for how to apply pledges and click [OK]. (Typically you’ll leave the default box checked to apply strict event assignment).
Click [OK] once prompted that the operation is complete.
Click [Search] to refresh the list and the values will update accordingly.
You can open a donor’s record card and view their pledge payment schedule to verify the payments were applied correctly. My example is below for Warren Buffet where the first payment was applied out of 12 payments.
The next section will show you how to search for donors who have an outstanding pledge and how to view the details of the pledges in the respective lists.
#3 – Running Reports for Donors with Unpaid Pledges, and Pledge Detail Reports
View Donors with an Outstanding Pledge in the Contacts (Donors/Voters) List
View Details (Line Items) for Pledges in the ‘Pledges, Details’ List
View Donors with Outstanding Pledges and a Summary of their Pledge in the ‘Pledges’ List
Checkout the Related Resources below for many other useful articles and videos related to this topic.
Article: Enter Contributions
Article: Contribution Year-End Report
Article: Delete a Contribution
Article: Matching Contributions
Article: Importing Pledges – Best Practices
Video: Contribution – Apply Contribution Payments to Open Pledges
Video: Getting Started 106a – Entering contributions (NON PROFIT ONLY)
Video: Pledges – Close out a pledge that has payments on it
Video: Getting Started 102 Beginning Queries – Nonprofit
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