Learning From the Salvation Army: From Red Kettles to CRM

If you thought those guys and gals, standing in the cold and ringing kettles were just a small part of the Salvation Army’s operation you’re wrong. The Salvation Army has an IT staff of 75, to support 6,000 employees and this IT staff maximizes IT to the max.
Your business might have less staff overall than the Salvation Army’s entire IT department, but the lessons learned are universal.
Computer World writes It looks like a pretty unsophisticated operation, but we know how productive each of our kettles are, how productive our bell ringers are. We capture all the demographics about who’s ringing the bell at a particular kettle, where the kettle is, what time of day, how much income it brings in. It’s pretty simple. We take the kettles down on a periodic basis and count the money that’s in them. We know who stood at the kettle at that particular time. We capture that in the database. Therefore we have all these statistics on how much income per hour or per person, then we can compare demographics on how productive kettles are in one location or one store, say in front of a Wal-Mart or a Target, and we can best deploy our labor and get the maximum returns.