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Cutover Impacts and Workarounds: September 5 – October 9, 2023

Constituent Data,
Gift and Fund Management
| 10 minutes to read
Last Updated: 09-05-2023


Thank you for your patience during our transition to the new 4WARD CRM system. Please note that our business intelligence, marketing communications, stewardship, and alumni relations and engagement teams are working hard to ensure that key functions are carried out through the transition. General consulting and project requests/inquiries will take longer than usual.

Please refer to the following instructions for key business processes during the cutover period of September 5–October 9, 2023.

Accessing/Using ABE During Cutover

Starting at 5 p.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 5, ABE will be “read only.” There will be a period of a few hours that evening of September 5 or the morning of September 6 when ABE is inaccessible, as we make a copy of all the data to convert to 4WARD. After that brief pause, you will be able to use ABE, with static data, similar to how you have always used it. Please note:

  • No new information should be added to ABE (no gifts entered, no contact reports entered, no records updated)
  • Any reports that campus users access via ABE will remain available and will include data collected through September 5.
  • You will still be able to run reports, view OnBase documents, read biographical and contact information, etc., with static data collected through September 5.
  • ABE will continue to be available to all users until at least October 13. After go-live, you are encouraged to move your work quickly into the new system.

Important note: Although we are calling ABE “read-only,” we cannot lock down users’ ability to edit data. Beginning at 5 p.m. on September 5, please treat ABE as read-only and do not add or modify any data. Any new data added after September 5 will not be converted to 4WARD and may be lost. Instead, please use the cutover processes defined here and by your teams to track any data that will ultimately be added to 4WARD.

New Fund Creation and Changes

No new funds or fund changes can be entered into FAST, WFAA’s financial system, during our cutover. Due to the way financial information is shared between FAST & 4WARD systems, we must hold updates until after 4WARD is live to ensure the integrity of the data.

Continue submitting new fund requests through the normal process during cutover. They will be entered into WFAA systems after October 13.

Please hold fund change requests, and submit them after October 13.

Note: The new fund request form may be down for a period of time during cutover tasks due to updates required to GFM.

Receiving and Receipting Gifts

Gift Services will not enter gift or pledge data into ABE or 4WARD during the cutover period. We will continue to accept gifts, and all our gift channels will remain open. Gift Services will maintain a backlog of gift and pledge information for entry into 4WARD once we go live, and processing and receipting are estimated to start again on September 27. During cutover, receipting will be handled as follows:

  • For gifts made online, donors will receive automated messages that explain our delay in receipting.
  • A general message on our online giving pages will alert donors to delays in processing and receipting.
  • We will not proactively communicate with all of our donors/alumni/friends regarding delays in processing and receipting.

Pledge Reminders

We do not expect any impact on standard pledge reminders. However, reminders for gifts made through the Badger Engagement Center (formerly known as Badger Call) may be delayed by up to two weeks.

Viewing and Acknowledging Gifts

Although we won’t be entering data into either CRM during cutover, major gifts of $25,000+ will be manually accessible by select development staff at WFAA.

Additionally, the Donor Acknowledgment Report (DAR) will continue to be available and will reflect any gifts entered through September 5. After go-live, the DAR will be pulled from the same location on the Advancement Hub, with most fields available (tentatively 77 of the current 87 output fields). An updated guide and recorded training will be available in late October. Regular DAR training for WFAA and campus partners will resume in early 2024.

List Requests

Please continue to use the Request Lists/Reports on the Advancement Hub for report requests, but please be mindful of limiting nonbusiness-critical requests. Please know that WFAA’s SLA (Service Level Agreement) will be increased from 10 business days to 20 business days to accommodate balancing ad-hoc reports, building new self-service reports, learning the new system, and adjusting preexisting necessary work. Not all reports requested will be filled in the 20 business days. Some requests may be placed on a backlog and prioritized by the WFAA leadership team. Once prioritized, they will be assigned a delivery date and communicated as needed.

Marketing/Annual Giving Campaigns

Annual giving campaigns were preplanned, and we do not expect mailing delays. Campus partners were asked to create fall solicitations prior to cutover. See more details here.

Campus reporting from annual giving and DXOs will be paused until reports are rebuilt (timing TBD).

Entering Interactions and Contact Reports

In the new 4WARD system, interactions/contacts will be called activity reports. During cutover, users should maintain a backlog of interactions for entering after go-live. Click here to access a template for backlog purposes.

Annotated Guest Lists

Reports with lists of general information and giving information tied to all attendees of events are not among the identified reports that will be available at go-live. There are a couple options that can be done on your own:

  1. PRIOR TO CUTOVER: Depending on your ABE access, you can pull or request the annotated guest list based on your invitation list (using their ABE IDs rather than a specific event ID) prior to our cutover period. This could be a long list with manual work as you will have to compare your registrant to this invitation-based list, but it does give you the information about all potential attendees, and you can highlight/track them as they come in through your registration system. This option would probably work best if your invitation list is shorter, and you are comfortable maintaining the list/highlighting your registrants on a regular basis, so when you need the report, the information has already been collected.
  2. AFTER CUTOVER: You can wait until closer to your event date and pull the annotated guest list (again using ABE IDs rather than a specific event ID) after our cutover period. This limits the annotated guest list you are pulling, but you will need to manually look up each registrant’s ABE ID to be able to pull the list. This option would probably work best if your invitation list is very long, and you expect only a small fraction to register. You will then have to spend time pulling together the ABE IDs close to your event date, but you will not need to maintain a separate list during registration flow.

If you run into issues while executing the steps above, submit a help ticket with the subject line “Annotated guest list assistance,” and someone will assist you as soon as possible.

Registration Services

Alternative tools for registration may be necessary to manage on your own during cutover (and potentially beyond). Please contact us with a help desk ticket to request a detailed list of options and information around which one may be best for you can be found.

There will be delays in the registration teams’ response time for edits to registrants as we will be taking an active role in onboarding the new tool, training staff, and moving event data into the new system for reporting continuity. Our typical 2-business day turnaround will be extended.

Adding event information into 4WARD after go-live:

  • To upload attendance information to 4WARD to track engagement data and for future invitations/reporting:
    • Submit a help ticket with an excel file of the folks you want tagged. Please be sure to:
      • Provide the event date, time, name, and general details.
      • Clearly mark each registrant in the list as attended, no-show, etc.
      • Provide ABE IDs for all registrants within the list.
        • If your list is more than 300 registrants, there is a matching process that CDP can run to search for ABE IDs to help reduce the amount of manual work you need to do. Please note: This process may be delayed due to CDP’s heavy involvement in 4WARD transition. The steps to run this process are complicated and take manual work, so we reserve the process for lists of more than 300 records only.
        • If your list is fewer than 300 registrants, we ask that you manually look up and add the ABE IDs to the list prior to submitting your help ticket.
  • After your event, you may have event revenue to add to 4WARD. Please review the WFAA Gift and Fund Management Policies to understand how to deposit revenue at WFAA and what information must be provided.

Feel free to contact Kelsey Dodson with questions, suggestions, or concerns related to the above registration services.

Records Updates

Any constituent data update requests can be submitted to the help desk at or via the Advancement Hub. During the cutover period, CDP will review and prioritize these requests. Do not submit any requests via the Constituent Update Request Portal in ABE!

What to Include for Typical Contact Data Update Requests

  1. Add or update constituent information in 4WARD, include:
    • Name
    • ABE ID
    • Degree year and school/college, if known
    • Information on what type of data update is needed
    • If you have more than 10 updates, please include a spreadsheet or csv file with your updates.
  2. A constituent needs to be marked as deceased, include:
    • Name
    • ABE ID
    • Date of death, if known
  3. Two constituents must be spouse-linked or divorced, include:
    • Name of those who must be spouse-linked or divorced
    • ABE IDs
  4. Add/Remove relationship, include:
    • Name(s)
    • ABE IDs
    • Type of relationship to be added/removed
  5. Add employment to an individual, include:
    • Name
    • ABE ID
    • Organization where the individual works
    • Social media link, i.e., LinkedIn, if known
  6. Add solicit codes to a record, include:
    • The name of the mailing the individual wants to be removed from or added to
    • The channel of communication the individual would like to be removed from or added to — print, email, or other
  7. Merge duplicate records, include:
    • Name(s) and ABE IDs of the duplicate records
  8. Communication Tagging: use existing form on Advancement Hub

Special note: Requests to merge records will be saved and completed once this functionality is available via post-go-live enhancements.