In This Article:

    Summary Letters or Receipts: Create Year-End Letters or Receipts

    In This Article:

      New software enhancements are in red.

      US-based non-profit organizations that effectively manage donor interactions are more likely to generate leads and raise more money in the future. This is especially true during Tax Season. The question is, what are some of best practice steps and Salsa CRM tools you can use to astutely manage the interactions that you have with your donors? This article walks you through the process of...

      1. Creating a year-end summary letter of all donations for your supporters.
      2. Printing from Salsa CRM or using Salsa CRM's email function to email your supporters. 

      If you are a US-based organization and interested in a Video presentation of this process, please click here to go to Salsa Scholars.

      Note: If you are a Canadian organization and you want to use the Summary Letters/Receipt Wizard, you must apply summary receipts to gifts as you enter them into CRM and in chronological order. Do not start attaching receipts with the newest donation and working backwards, especially across the new year. The receipt numbers that Salsa CRM assigns to donations are sequential.

      The process has three phases:

      • Create and upload a form letter (if you have already uploaded form letters, you can skip this step).
      • (U.S. organizations only) Either attach your summary letter to each donation for each donor who will receive the summary letter or alternately send letters to groups of donors. Find and group donors using the Advanced Query Wizard.
      • Apply year-end summary letter to the donors and donations and print. Processing or queueing this number of letters for your printer might take several hours (especially if your letter has extensive or large graphics); you cannot restart the process if a previous process is still running and would have to go to the Long Running Processes menu (Tools > Long Running Processes) to cancel the process.

      Summary Letter Donation Table

      Salsa's summary letter or summary receipt templates contain a special table that includes the following columns of information regarding the previous year's donations,

      • Received Date
      • Amount Received
      • Non-Deductible Amount
      • Tax Deductible Amount
      • Fund Name

      When you generate your summary letters, Salsa CRM will auto-populate the table with that donor's previous calendar year's donation information. You may modify the table column headers by changing the wording, but do not modify the number of columns or the number of rows. Leave it as a single-row table; do not attempt to add rows to the table.

      If you choose not to use one of our summary letter or receipt templates and want to use your own creation, you can insert a variable in your letter that substitutes the total amount of last year's gifts to your organization. Add the variable {{Total Amount}} to your Document. Make sure to add your currency symbol such as a dollar sign before the variable, because it is not included in the variable substitution.

      Create and Upload a Form Letter

      Using Salsa's templates to start designing your Form Letters or Receipts will be easier and help to ensure success. Our summary letter template files have tables in them that will populate with all the donations for that donor for the previous calendar year. To create a summary letter... 

      1. This page contains templates that you can modify and then upload into Salsa CRM via Google Docs.
      2. Read the best practices section.
      3. Select and download the template that you want to use. Note that there are different letters for organizations in the United States and Canada.
      4. Open the downloaded template in Google Docs.
      5. Edit the template by modifying the text and adding your corporate artwork as needed.

        Note: You'll find a table at the bottom of each template. When you generate form letters, Salsa CRM will auto-populate the table with donor information. You may modify the table column headers by changing the wording, but do not modify the number of columns or the number of rows. Leave it as a single-row table; do not attempt to add rows to the table.

      6. Save the template using a new filename that you will remember and which will be easy to find.
      7. Open Salsa CRM.
      8. Follow the instructions for uploading a file via Google Docs here.
      9. Save your modified template file as a form letter as described here. Select Donation as the Type of Form Letter.

        NOTE: Canadians will want to choose Receipt. Receipt Form Letters appear in the Receipt drop-down field on the Donation screen. Canadians will want to choose the appropriate tax deductible designation. Ensure that Summary Letters is selected.

        2017-12-21_1559.png
      10. Select Mail as the delivery method. (Alternately, you can choose Email. If you choose to email, you will have to have a TXT file that contains your email content, that can be uploaded to provide the body of the email. Your Google Doc file will then be an attachment to your emails. You will also be given options for necessary email fields.)
      11. Click the Select Document button to open the file browser.
      12. Find the edited template that you want to use (which you uploaded earlier in the process). and double-click it. You'll be returned to the Add form Letter to Screen window, and the filename will be listed beneath the Delivery Method.
      13. Click Save

      Find and Group Donors (U.S. organizations only)

      US organizations that are not attaching summary letters directly to donations would use this process.

      In this phase, you'll want to organize your constituents into easily manageable groups of 500-800, using the Advanced Query Wizard. You can find additional help in the application itself. Click Help > Tutorials to access Advanced Query Wizard walkthroughs.

      Before you complete the steps below, ensure that you have a Group ready into which you will put constituents. Click here for information about adding groups.

      1. Click Reports > Queries > Advanced Query Wizard.
      2. For Query Type, click Constituent.
      3. For Purpose of Query, click Assign Constituent to Group/SmartGroup.
      4. Click Next. The Wizard will advance to Step 2.
      5. With the Output radio button selected, double-click First Name and Last or Org Name. These will be added to the Output Fields frame. You can add any additional fields (for example, Postal Code) that you want to use the help you to create smaller sets of constituents.
      6. The Salsa Scholars training video linked above uses postal code to filter constituents into manageable groups. For these directions, we'll filter using the first letter of Last or Org Name. Click Last or Org Name so it is highlighted in the Output Fields frame.
      7. Click the cog icon at the top of the Output Field frame, and then click Filter from the drop-down list that appears. The Add Filter Criteria dialog box appears. This is where you will define the criteria according to which your constituents will be divided. For these directions would create two groups, A-K and L-Z. You may create as many groups as you like and/or sort on different values (such as Postal Code). For the sake of brevity, we will create only one of two groups. In real life, you will create as many as you need.
      8. For the filter Operator, select begins with.
      9. Enter the value A for your filter and click OK.
        Summary_Letter_AQW_Filter.png
      10. Repeat steps 7-9 to create new filters with the value B and so on until you reach the letter K.
      11. Add an opening parenthesis ( to the first filter on Last or Org Name and add a closing parenthesis ) to the last filter on Last or Org Name.
      12. For each filter after the first Last Name filter, change the AND/OR value of that filter to OR by highlighting the filter and clicking the OR button.
        Summary_Letter_AQW.png
      13. Click Next. The Advanced Query Wizard will advance to Step 3, where you will see a list of all of the constituents that meet the filter criteria (in this case, everyone with a Last or Org Name beginning with letters between A and K).
      14. Review the list to ensure that you've captured the constituents that you want, and then click Next. The Advanced Query Wizard will advance to Step 4.
      15. Click Global Update, and then click Assign to Group. The Assign to Group dialog box will appear.
      16. Select that group that you want to use, and then click OK. Salsa Recommends that the group name references that it is a summary letter group and the appropriate letter range, for example, 2018 Summary Ltr A-K.

      NOTE: It's best to print your labels now for the summary letters, since there is no label printing functionality in the Summary Letter generation screen.

      Print Summary Letters Using the Summary Letters/Receipts Wizard

      In this phase, you'll bring everything together to create your summary letters (or receipts).

      1. Click Manage > Documents > Summary Letters/Receipts.
        2017-12-20_1221.png
      2. This step is different for U.S. and Canadian organizations.
        • U.S. organizations...
          • Select was a Summary Form Letter if you did attach a summary letter to your donations.
          • Select may not have been a Summary Form Letter if you did not attach a summary letter to your donations.
            • Select the Summary Form Letter was for donors in this group.
            • Select the group you created above.
        • Canadian organizations - Select was a summary form letter.
      3. Ensure that the Donation Received date range is correct.
      4. (U.S. organizations only) Include Donations even if a Letter or Receipt was already printed should remain checked if you want constituents to receive a comprehensive summary letter even though they received individual letters for each donation.
      5. Click Search. Search results appear. Results are aggregated into how many donations and donors are counted for your letters. The number of letters and/or receipts to be printed also displays.
        Summary_Letters.png
      6. If 'was a Summary Form Letter' was selected, the letters were already applied to each donation. If 'may not have been a Summary Form Letter' was selected, you will need to select the summary letter to use for the donations returned by the query. Since the 'Selected Letter or Receipt was not a Summary Form Letter', the donations reflected in each summary letter that you process here will not have their letter dates, receipt dates, or receipt numbers updated upon processing.
      7. Click Process Letters. Your letters will appear in a new browser tab (make sure that pop-up windows are not blocked) called the Letter Processing Window. It may take some time to display all letters depending on the template file and how many large graphics are in that file.

       Letter Processing Window

      The Letter Processing Window contains merged versions of your letter in PDF format. At the top left of the screen are buttons you can use to display all your letters, either one after another or all at one time. Other buttons help with the following...
      Letter_Processing_nav.png

      • The Edit button allows you to edit the letter that is currently displaying on the screen.
      • The Log button displays information about the current set of letters that will help Salsa Support decode any issues you may be having with your letters.
      • The Print button will print the current letter but not mark Salsa CRM that you have printed the letter.
      • The Print (Email) All & Save button will print the printable letters, email the emailable letters, but it will not save corresponding Letter (or Receipt) Sent Dates unless 'was a Summary Form Letter' was selected originally.
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