What to analyze in the giving patterns at your church

Two great articles on how to analyze the giving data for your church by Chris Gartman of PSK at their blog, Faith-Based Accounting.

The software you use for recording contributions by donor should be able to give you some great data. What can you learn from that information?

Don’t put all your eggs in one basket suggests you look at concentration of giving. In other words, how much of your giving is coming from the top several donors. There will always be a large concentration, because God blesses a few people with skills that are highly rewarded in our economy and their income is very high.  There will always be a high concentration of giving from a small group.   The time to worry is if there is an extreme concentration.

A great quote from Chris Gartman that applies if there is an unhealthy concentration:

“…Church leadership must keep in mind that their church is only one death, divorce or bad sermon away from financial disaster”.

The Age Demographics post suggests looking at giving by age. Review the patterns of total giving by age span and average giving by age.  There may be some patterns you did not realize which in turn will suggest how you could help people in the pews.

Check out the articles.

There is a lot of data available from you donor module. If you need help to interpret the reports available from your donor database, you can get some time from a consultant who works with lots of churches.

You could also talk to a CPA who works in the religious NPO community. You could call my firm, the PSK firm, or any of the CPAs whose blog I have listed on the right side of this page, or any CPA listed at the Christian Leadership Alliance website or listed at the ECFA website.  Just make sure you talk to someone who knows the church world.  The good news is that there are quite of few of us CPAs who focus on serving this community.

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