As a major gift officer, it is always important to have an effective plan of work for your prospect pool and we have a spreadsheet that can help. The below spreadsheet will keep you focused on your most promising opportunities and make sure you are efficiently moving prospects through the donor pipeline.

The first tab should be filled in with all the prospects in your portfolio. From there you will decide which prospects you will be asking for a gift this fiscal year or setting up for a gift the next fiscal year. This subset of your portfolio will become the focus for all your development activity and require the most of your time. Below is an explanation of each column in the spreadsheet.


For the prospects you will be asking for a gift in this fiscal year or next fiscal year, you will select one of the below options. There should be 10-15 prospects of each in your portfolio. So 20-30 of your total prospects will be selected. All of the other prospects can be left blank. 

1 – Current Fiscal Year Gift
2 – Next Fiscal Year Gift

Gift Amount

This is the amount you will be soliciting the prospect for a gift.

Activity to Move Prospect

This column goes into detail about the specific activity that will help move the prospect. The pull down menu lists engagement activities that are organized from levels 1 through 5. The first level includes lower activities like being a event volunteer. The highest level of five is the deepest form of involvement which is a board of trustees member. The goal of this column is to give you helpful engagement suggestions that will grow a prospect’s affinity as higher levels are utilized. Pull down options:

1 – Event Volunteer
1 – Event Judge
1 – Individual Meeting with Faculty
1 – Class Guest Speaker
1 – Career Services
2 – Student Mentoring
2 – Free Tickets to Events
2 – Research Project
2 – Meeting with Department Head
3 – Department Alumni Award
3 – Department Advisory Board
3 – Event Keynote Speaker
4 – Meeting with President
4 – University Alumni Award
5 – Board of Trustees

For tips on building a list of tiered engagement activities for your university, read this article.

Geo Code

This is the location of where the prospect lives using their geo code (i.e Boston Chapter). This column will be helpful to plan out your travel.


Input details about where the gift will be directed and any other information that you deem important.

Once everything has been filled in on the spreadsheet, you can sort the data to plan the year. First sort by “Solicitation” with high to low gift amounts. These prospects should be your priority and visited right away. A secondary sort by Geo Code can be done to plan travel around those prospects that are most ready to be solicited. Overall, the goal is to keep better track of your prospects that are a priority and the activity being done to move them closer to a gift.

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