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eRate Newsletter | April 15, 2021


Overcoming Challenges of Endowment Fundraising

You work at a nonprofit that has an endowment. You know you should be part of the solution to grow it. Or perhaps you work at a nonprofit that doesn’t have an endowment, but you think it’s a missed opportunity that you want to rectify.

What’s holding you back? What institutional decisions are making your job harder? How can you get on with the business of closing transformational gifts to your charity?

We hope that the ideas and guidelines in this article will help you and your organization to increase your chances of growing your endowments significantly. The attempt here is to demystify endowments and set out some best practices for fundraising for them. This writing is primarily aimed at fundraisers but does contain ideas that will require coordination and implementation from other areas of your charity.




Notice: To accommodate clients currently not able to view PG Calc webinars in a group, all registrants will receive a link to a recording of the webinar that they can share with colleagues at their organization. Ordinarily, the recording is available within 1-2 weeks of the live session. Alternatively, additional participants at the same organization who wish to attend the live session may do so for just $25 each.

State Regulation of CGAs: From Simple to Downright Complex

Presented by
Edie Matulka

April 29, 2021
1:00 - 2:30 pm ET



PGM Anywhere and Gift Annuities

April 27-28, ONLINE (4 hours over 2 days)

PGM to PGM Anywhere FREE

May 6, ONLINE (90 Minutes)

PGM Anywhere and Gift Annuities

May 11-12, ONLINE (4 hours over 2 days)

GiftWrap Fundamentals

May 26-27, ONLINE (6 hours over 2 days)


Quick Tip: PGM Anywhere’s Enhanced Exporting Capabilities

The web-based version of our flagship software, PGM Anywhere, has some exciting exporting capabilities that are not available in PGM desktop. Specifically, in PGM Anywhere you can export directly to a PDF and email a presentation to yourself, a colleague, or a donor.

Here are the Export functions in PGM Anywhere:


It is easy to export presentations directly to PDF without having to export to Word first. If you save in Microsoft Word or Microsoft Excel format you can make edits to the presentation.

Many tablets, such as iPad, do not support Word or Excel. In this case, only the export to PDF format will work. If you wish to export a presentation to Word or Excel, you may have to do this by running PGM Anywhere from a browser on a laptop or desktop computer.

The email function (icon of an envelope above) opens an email window with the PDF of your presentation attached. You may enter any email address you wish, and the subject and message fields are editable.

We hope you enjoy these features as much as we do! If you have questions about these export functions, contact Client Services at or 888-474-2252.



From the PG Calc Blog: It’s Tax Season, and Timing Is Everything This Year

Everyone knows by now that the IRS has extended the filing deadlines for 2020 federal income tax returns for individual taxpayers; the normal deadline of April 15 has been extended to May 17, giving all of us an extra month.

But less widely known is that the federal tax filing deadline for trust tax returns has not been extended.

2021 Tax Filing Deadlines




Please Hold on to PGM Desktop a Little Longer

We are planning to officially retire our desktop Planned Giving Manager (PGM) at the end of 2021, and we are encouraging users to transition to the online version – PGM Anywhere – as quickly as possible. However, for a couple of reasons, we strongly recommend that users keep the desktop version installed on their computers through the end of the year.

The first reason is that there are a handful of functions in PGM desktop that have not yet been fully implemented in PGM Anywhere. In particular, there are some testamentary gift plans that still exist only in the desktop version. Also, the more advanced gift planning models involving transfer taxes are not yet available in PGM Anywhere.

The second reason – and perhaps the more broadly applicable one – is that we are currently working on a utility that will allow cases saved using PGM desktop to be converted and saved in PGM Anywhere's case database. Typically, the cases that users have saved in the past are stored in the same PGM folder – on the C drive of the computer – that PGM itself resides on. Generally speaking, when the user (or the user’s IT group) uninstalls PGM desktop from the computer, the historical gift files are deleted in the process. Holding on to PGM desktop until the conversion utility is available will give you a chance to save your past cases in PGM Anywhere before they go away with your copy of PGM desktop.

Please email us or call 888-474-2252 if you have any questions or concerns about keeping desktop PGM installed on your computer through the end of 2021.

Why I Like Donor Surveys

Businesses and researchers across all sectors conduct surveys to uncover answers to specific questions, which in turn help them build stronger relationships. A donor survey allows you, in an unobtrusive way, to learn what motivates your donors and collect valuable demographic information that may be missing in your database – for example, whether a donor has children or other heirs.

When a donor takes the time to help your organization with feedback on your mission and improve your fundraising, you’ll be surprised how comfortable and honest they are in the non-intimidating survey environment. One of my favorite questions to ask is if they have ever included any gift in their will or trust to a non-profit or institution they care about. It’s a general question about giving to charity but with the added twist of planned giving. Wouldn’t you like to know which of your donors has a history of planned giving?

Did you know PG Calc does donor surveys? Contact me, Andrew Palmer, at for more information!





Please Participate in the ACGA’s Survey of Charitable Gift Annuities

The American Council on Gift Annuities (ACGA) is conducting its latest nationwide survey of charitable gift annuity programs. The data collected in this quadrennial survey have helped thousands of charities build, evaluate, and/or strengthen their gift annuity programs. The new survey report will be published on the ACGA website and sent to all ACGA Sponsors in April 2022.

Please consider participating in this enormously valuable survey. The ACGA is administering the survey online from April 2, 2021 to May 15, 2021.

You can take the survey now.

It will be useful to have information about annuity activity from your most recent fiscal year handy as you begin the survey. You can also access a PDF of the survey. It will help you prepare your answers prior to beginning the online survey. You will be able to exit and re-enter the survey, as needed, until you click Done.

If you experience technical issues accessing the survey, email or call Alicia Gilbert at or (770) 874-3355. For all other inquiries, contact Kristen Jaarda, Chair of the ACGA Research Committee at

How Fast Are We Going, and When Are We Going to Get There? The Value of a Planned Giving Dashboard

The dashboard on your car tells you how fast you are going, the status of your engine, and in new cars, much more. Your vehicle dashboard gives you the information to know how well your car is performing and the general health of the vehicle. Likewise, a planned giving dashboard can provide feedback on the performance of your program.

Tracking the Dollars
A planned giving dashboard should include dollars raised (broken out by gift type, bequests, CGAs, etc.), including the current period compared to the prior year. Don’t forget to include a category for gifts of complex assets and estate administration facilitated by the planned giving team. The dashboard should include results that reflect the totality of planned giving activity through gifts raised by or with the assistance of planned giving.

The dollars realized by planned giving reflect activity by fundraisers and marketing efforts of fundraisers who may be long gone from the charity. Therefore, the planned giving dashboard should also reflect key metrics that correlate fundraiser activity that fills the planned giving pipeline of the future.

It’s More Than Money
The old favorite metric of fundraisers everywhere is number of donor calls. That becomes a numbers game. At the end of the month development officers are feverishly scheduling calls and visits with donors who won’t say no. Solely counting contacts doesn’t capture the reason for or quality of the contact.

Consider a metric such as number of proposals delivered. The number of proposals should correspond to the number of cultivation calls necessary to get in a position to deliver a proposal. Such a metric is an effective measure of activity likely to lead to a gift.

The number of discovery calls also corresponds with fundraiser activity. Adding new prospects and moving on when a prospect isn’t progressing keeps the portfolio fresh. Too often a fundraiser gets comfortable with their portfolio and existing prospects.

In fact, you might consider a metric to measure disqualifications. Fundraisers have a hard time letting go, even after it's clear the prospect is not viable. If that's a problem, consider a metric to encourage fundraisers to make those tough calls to cut off unproductive relationships.

PG Calc’s consulting group can help you design a planned giving dashboard to measure and improve the performance of your planned giving program. For more information contact Jeff Lydenberg at 617-497-4997 or at



Hope Health

HopeHealth Sees Planned Giving Growth with PG Calc’s Marketing Services

“With PG Calc, we get the benefit of decades of expertise in planned giving and marketing—and a true collaboration. They are responsive and creative. They are also proactive, reaching out with insight and ideas. The website they designed for us is customized, on brand, and beautiful, as well as easy to navigate. Print pieces are beautifully designed and effective—we began getting responses almost immediately. We are a small client, but they make us feel important. Our planned giving program is growing and we look forward to a long partnership with PG Calc.”

Suzanne Fortier
Chief Philanthropy Officer

Learn more about HopeHealth.

Learn more about PG Calc's Marketing Services.