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Best Practices & Resources in Advancement Services

Best Practices

From prospect development to PCI compliance, AASP has a library of industry best practices available exclusively to its members.

The AASP Best Practices program is the first of its kind to systematically address practices across the range of advancement services disciplines.

AASP's Best Practices in advancement services have been allocated to the following categories.

(Select a category to view best practices)

Best Practices are available to AASP members and can be accessed by logging into the website. Please send any comments to bestpractices@advserv.org and our committee members will look into them!

Gain access to this growing library of over 100 Best Practices in advancement services. Join AASP today.

SPECIAL ANNOUNCEMENT: AASP has entered into partnership agreements with the Association of Donor Relations Professionals (ADRP) and the Association of Professional Researchers for Advancement (Apra) to work together on best practices in the areas of Donor Relations, and Prospect Development, respectively. Results are available to members of both associations.



Advancement Management

  • Accountability
  • Change Management
  • Communication Planning
  • Compliance
  • Conducting a Virtual Retreat
  • Considerations in Calculating Your Institution's Alumni Participation Rate
  • Cross-Functional Optimization
  • Customer Service Guidelines for Advancement Services
  • Data Governance
  • Defining Professional Standards in the Workplace
  • Ethics 1
  • Ethics 2
  • Gift Acceptance Policies (2018)
  • Integrity in the Workplace (2017)
  • Moral Decision Making
  • Office Politics (2017)
  • Policy and Procedure Manuals
  • Preparing for General Data Protection Regulation Compliance (2018)
  • Project Management
  • Reconciling Advancement Services and Accounting (2017)
  • Standards for Performance
  • Strategic Planning
  • Talent Acquisition
  • Talent Development
  • Talent Management
  • Talent Management Organizational Development and Planning or Talent Transition
  • Talent Retention and Engagement
  • Vendor Management (2017)

Campaign Management

  • Advancement and Campaign Funding (2017)
  • Campaign Branding (2017)
  • Campaign Budgeting (2017)
  • Campaign Counting (2017)
  • Campaign Internal Readiness Assessments (2017)
  • Campaign Planning and Operations - Abridged for Small Shops (2017)
  • Campaign Planning and Operations - Abridged for Time (2017)
  • Campaign Planning and Operations -Unabridged (2017)
  • Campaign Stewardship (2017)
  • Campaign Volunteer Management (2017)
  • Prospect Development During a Campaign (2017)
  • Prospect Development Leading Up to a Campaign (2017)
  • Supporting a Building Campaign (2015)
  • Transforming Reporting for Your Comprehensive Campaign (2017)

Donor Relations & Stewardship

  • Digitizing Donor Relations
  • Donor Recognition (2017)
  • Donor Reporting (2017)
  • Gift Acceptance (2017)
  • Gift Aknowledgement (2017)
  • Helping Donors Give Wisely
  • Scholarship Stewardship (2017)
  • Social Media (2017)

Information Management

  • Data Integration
  • Data Security
  • Protecting Constituent Information
  • Real-Time Data
  • System Selection
  • Using SharePoint to Automate the Advancement Services Office
  • Volunteer Access to Information

Prospect Development

  • Building a Gift Pyramid Table
  • Conducting Prospect Research on a Shoestring
  • Developing Engagement Scores
  • Ethics of Prospect Development
  • External Engagement & Collaboration in your Organization
  • Internal Collaboration in your Organization
  • Maximizing Strategies for Donor Advised Funds (2017)
  • Prospect Capacity Ratings
  • Prospect Coding
  • Prospect Identification Analytics (2018)
  • Prospect Management Policies & Procedures
  • Prospect Management Reports
  • Prospect Research Metrics
  • Qualification & Disqualification of Prospects
  • Research Request Forms and Formats
  • Resources Researchers Use
  • Screening Implementation Revised
  • Social Networking as a Tool for Research
  • System Implementation & Management
  • Valuation & Monetization of Research
  • Working with Demographic Data
  • Working with Parent Data

Records Management

  • Anonymous Donors & Gifts
  • Applying Recognition Soft Credits
  • Challenge & Matching Grants
  • Courting Constituents Online
  • Data Management
  • Donor Advised Funds
  • E-Campaign Data
  • FERPA Compliance
  • Gift Administration - Gifts versus Grants versus Contracts
  • Gift Agreements
  • Gift Processing
  • Leveraging Social Media Networks
  • Managing a Data Security Breach
  • Matching Gift Administration
  • Online Credit Card Fraud Prevention
  • Partial Interest Contributions (2017)
  • PCI Compliance
  • Pledge Reminders
  • Pledge Write-off Standards
  • Quid Pro Quo Contributions
  • Recording and Receipting Gifts in Kind
  • Recording Intentions to Give
  • Records Management -Naming Standards
  • Records Management Responsibility
  • Reporting Advancement Expenditures and Comparing ROI