Research - Services

Prospect Identification

Includes monitoring and analyzing demographic information, business trends and forecasts, executive movement and corporate financial statistics in order to identify, segment and evaluate prospective serious donors. The goal of this process is to maximize fundraising initiatives at McMaster University. Prospect Identification can be conducted on three levels: project based, development driven and as an independent initiative by Research.

Biographical, Corporate and Financial Research

Includes the collection of relevant information, such as corporate and individual wealth indicators, giving capacity, connections and interests with the purpose of matching these interests to institutional needs and programs. Five levels of research are available to provide development personnel with the information required to place a prospective donor into a specific gift range category. This type of reserach can assist all members of Advancement who require information for the purposes of volunteer identification, material for articles and speaking notes as well as information on specific programs.

Online Database Research

Involves the searching of many major periodical indexes and abstracts and full text files (national and international newspapers, trade journals, directories, etc.) This activity is usually conducted in concert with the profile creation process but can be conducted on an ad hoc basis to located specific articles or informatioin. In addition to reactive searching through databases, research also conducts a current awareness program to monitor and further qualify new prospects.

Database Management

Includes monitoring, updating, accurately coding and managing information regarding prospects. Data frequently updated includes but is not limited to executive movement and financial information, position level, assets, revenue, net profit and interests for all individual, corporate and foundation prospects to ensure the continued quality, consistency and integrity of database records.

Training Opportunities

The Research Office offers a wide variety of training opportunities to provide University Advancement staff with the opportunity to improve or upgrade their skills, with respect to services offered by advancement research. Currently the following sessions are available to Advancement Staff:

  • Advancement Research Overview
  • Prospect Tracking/Management
  • Using the Intranet to conduct Research
  • Biographical, Corporate and Foundation Research

Email Contact: wahnj@mcmaster.ca

Related Topics

  • There are several external organizatons that provide valuable information as well as professional development opportunities for those interested in Prospect Research:
  • Association of Professional Researchers for Advancement (APRA Canada)
  • Mailing Lists:
  • CANADA PROSPECT L
    Provides a forum for the discussion of prospect research issues from a Canadian perspective
  • PROSPECT L
    Electronic mail list provided as a forum for discussion of prospect research issues from an international perspective