Donor Management System (DMS): What do I need to know about DMS data?

The Donor Management System (DMS) is the source for accurate and up-to-date information on alumni and donors to the University of Minnesota. DMS is the CRM that is used to support your unit's institutional advancement, or donor/alumni relations functions. Many units communicate to their alumni and friends using data stored in DMS, hence the reason for using DMS for a large portion of your external relations efforts.

Specifically related to email communications, DMS is the source of information about alumni in their life-after-college and is kept up-to-date by development officers, alumni relations officers, UMF Annual Giving, University of Minnesota Alumni Association (which uses DMS as its source for alumni), system campuses, athletics, as well as University of Minnesota Foundation (UMF) data improvement strategies.

Records are kept up to date

  • Single record for an alum
    • A person has a single record throughout their academic career and life after college (e.g.Undergrad student receives scholarship, graduates, starts career at UofM, becomes a donor, receives an advanced degree through one of the professional schools).
    • Contact information is always being updated (see below for specific contact channels).
  • Grad/alumni degree/major
    • Daily PeopleSoft interfaces bring updated academic degree information, as well as contact into DMS.
  • Name(s)
    • Name changes, marriages, prefixes and suffixes.
  • Postal address (and changes)
    • Daily Address Correction Service (ACS) with USPS, manual updates as units discover changes
    • Maintaining postal address information also supports regional fundraising, faculty and Dean/Department Head travel, or legislative initiatives
  • Email addresses (changes which also include preferred email)
    • Life after college may include other or more appropriate emails
    • Undelivered emails are corrected/removed
  • Email unsubscribes
    • A complete subscription structure is maintained inside of DMS that stores recipients' unsubscribe requests for specific branded emails, unit emails, or opt-out of all emails (University level) sourced from DMS.
    • A link to is strongly suggested in email footers when data is sourced from DMS, to facilitate demographic changes and their update in DMS.

Ad hoc or Automated Data Extension builds

Email lists can be generated from a single/ad hoc request, or from a weekly automated build (which adheres to CAN-SPAM laws and is up-to-date with unsubscribes, name changes, new alumni, etc.).

Highly segmentable

DMS data can be segmented to create the exact list you need for your solicitation, engagement, reunion or annual event invitations. Lists can be segmented by academic degree data, grad year, or the alumni preferred reunion year, in addition to many other data points in DMS. Engaged individuals vs. not engaged can also be used as needed.


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