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Royal National Institute of the Blind (RNIB) is a leading UK charity, which was established to offer support, advice and information to over 2 million people with sight problems.
The charity recently became a membership organisation, enabling members to become more involved in RNIB's activities and talk to one another. The charity relies on donations to help pioneer research into the prevention and treatment of eye disease.
Direct Debit issues
In August 2003, RNIB introduced a system to allow donations to be collected by Direct Debit. It was envisaged that this payment method would drastically reduce the amount of time spent administering donations and the costs associated with this. However, validation problems relating to bank account details meant that the donations processing team had to manually check bank details using a paper based sort code directory. This was both time consuming and sometimes inaccurate as the printed information was often out of date.
The preferred solution
RNIB uses a fundraising database called Visual Alms which was supplied to them by Westwood Forster, a provider of specialist software and associated services to charities. Due to the problems that RNIB were experiencing with incorrect donor bank details, they decided to speak with Westwood Forster who recommended Bank Wizard as a complete software solution for validating bank account details. Bank Wizard was fully integrated within Visual Alms and is currently used by the External Relations division to check bank details for both Direct Debit and Standing Order transactions.
As a result of implementing Bank Wizard, the speed of verifying bank account details has greatly improved. In addition, Bank Wizard has supported RNIB in their migration to AUDDIS - the Automated Direct Debit Instruction Service - allowing Direct Debits to be set-up more rapidly.
"We recently introduced Paperless Direct Debit enabling donations to be made via our website or over the telephone. Bank Wizard is used to validate bank account details and is fully integrated within our fundraising system. This allows bank account details to be quickly entered into our database and validated prior to being used to produce personalised letters to the customer. This has saved us considerable time and money as the need to re-contact customers with incorrect bank account details has been drastically reduced".
Demis de Sousa,
Head of IT
Royal National Institute of the Blind