Featured Client Case Studies

Home / Clients



COSI’s development team sought a methodical way to create and implement a data-driven decision-making process. Abigail Poklar, Chief Development Officer and Vice President of Philanthropy saw an opportunity to evolve COSI’s individual giving program and set it in the new direction. After initial discussions with the Benefactor Group about a traditional development plan, COSI decided to participate in a beta test of a new Benefactor Group product – the Fundraising Maturity Model© (FMM).

The Fundraising Maturity Model is a roadmap for evaluating an organization’s fundraising systems and implementing best fundraising practices across the board. The model helps organizations move from ad hoc or inconsistent practices to mature and disciplined processes—ultimately leading to increased contributed revenue.

The Fundraising Maturity Model is based on a predetermined number of knowledge areas: Case for Support; Institutional Planning; Broad-based Giving and Events; Major Giving; Institutional Giving; etc.  There is a total of twelve knowledge areas. Each area provides a distinct opportunity to improve the organization’s culture and performance—assessing and addressing everything from the organization’s case for support to its systems. Thus, the FMM establishes a structured and quantified way to assess and improve fundraising practices. COSI found a solution in FMM.

Ms. Poklar worked with Steve Beshuk, Vice President of Benefactor Group, to assess the beloved Ohio institution along the essential FMM categories. “The Fundraising Maturity Model changed the way we think about our development planning and how we identify gaps and opportunity,” said Ms. Poklar. She called the final report “smart, practical, and easily actionable. It provided a really clear way to communicate our plans to staff and the board.”

The completion of the Fundraising Maturity Model report coincided with the creation of COSI’s development plan for the upcoming fiscal year, allowing the team to integrate the report’s findings beyond the individual giving program and lay the groundwork for change across the entire development department.

Soon after completion of the Fundraising Maturity Model project, COSI reached out to Benefactor Group to help solve one of the identified gaps: the lack of a robust annual giving campaign. JD Beiting, a fundraising consultant at Benefactor Group, stepped in and worked with the COSI team to develop a comprehensive annual giving plan. During both projects, Ms. Poklar described Benefactor Group as a “thought partner.”

If you want to learn more about this work or the Fundraising Maturity Model, calls us: Benefactor Group at 614-437-3000.

Fundraising Volunteers FAQ
Feasibility Study FAQ
Capital Campaign FAQ