Q: How long will it take PG Calc to produce the mail merge file once you receive my data?
A: We process most BatchCalcs files within 5 business days. This time allowance includes review and preparation of the data before production and verification and confirmation after production. The time required to process your file will vary depending on the quantity and quality of the data received and whether you request additional services.
Q: What formats can my data file be in?
A: Although we prefer Excel format, you are welcome to send your data in any of three common data file formats: Excel (*.xls), comma-separated values (*.csv), or tab-separated values (*.txt). See the BatchCalcs File Specifications sheet for complete file specifications.
Q: Is there an upper limit to how many records the BatchCalcs service can process?
A: No. Be aware, however, that the larger the file is, the more critical it will be that your data is error-free and does not contain duplicate records. If you are thinking of doing a planned giving mailing to more than 5,000 prospects, we will want to talk to you about your data and do some test runs to confirm it is in good shape before doing the actual processing.
Q: I notice the BatchCalcs service fee is the same for up to 500 records. Does it make sense to use the BatchCalcs service for processing just a couple hundred records?
A: Yes. The alternative to the BatchCalcs service is to perform the calculations one prospect at a time using your calculations software. For even 200 records, this would take a skilled operator at least one full day to complete, and there would still be room for data entry error or assigning results to the wrong prospect. The efficiency and accuracy of the BatchCalcs service makes it a good value when processing 200 records or more. Between 100 and 200 records is a judgment call. Under 100 records, it is probably more efficient for you to calculate each prospect's benefits one at a time.
Q: If I need it, can PG Calc help me create the file that the BatchCalcs service needs?
A: Yes. For example, if you or your service provider uses our GiftWrap software to administer your planned gifts, we can help you extract the information we need — in most cases, you will be able to extract the data without sending us your GiftWrap database.
If your data is in a donor database from another company, we can also help you with advice on how to select your data. We will charge an hourly fee of $175 for data conversion if you are not able to get the file close to our specifications without our assistance.
Q: I want to produce and send my mailing myself, but can PG Calc help me with creating the letter into which I will be merging my prospect information?
A: Yes. We have prepared template documents in Microsoft Word that will give you a head start on creating your letter. We are also happy to provide additional advice on how to create your letter and which calculated values you might want to include in it.
Q: I would like to enclose a personalized gift annuity calculation chart with each letter rather than insert calculations in the letter itself. Can the BatchCalcs service help me with that?
A: Yes. We have created a template summary chart in Microsoft Word for just this purpose. You are welcome to modify the chart in any way you see fit before merging your BatchCalcs data into it for your mailing. If you make your letter the first page of your merge document and the summary chart the second page, your letters and charts will be collated for you automatically when you produce your mailing.
Q: Will the data I send to PG Calc be kept confidential?
A: Yes. Your data will be used strictly for the purpose of BatchCalcs processing. We will not use it for any other purpose nor will we share it with anyone who is not involved in delivering the BatchCalcs service. Our practice is to keep client data for 3 to 6 months after delivering the processed data file in case issues with the processed data arise and then to delete it. We are happy to delete your data more quickly if you instruct us to do so.
Q: Can I include values in my data file that are not listed on your BatchCalcs Service Client Data Form?
A: Yes. You are welcome to include any other values you wish. We have listed on the form all of the values that you must either include in the file or specify an assumed value for, plus some additional values you will need to provide if we will be producing the mailing for you, but you are welcome to add others.
Q: Can I mix one-life and two-life calculations in the same file?
A: Yes. Calculations and gift annuity rate lookups are based on the age(s) or birthdate(s) contained in each record in the file.
Q: Can the BatchCalcs service handle fixed term calculations?
A: Yes. We can handle fixed terms of 1-20 years for charitable remainder unitrusts and charitable remainder annuity trusts. We can handle fixed terms of any length over one year for charitable lead unitrusts and charitable lead annuity trusts.
Q: Can I include calculations that are for a combination of fixed terms and lives?
A: No. While our Planned Giving Manager software can perform deductions for terms that are a combination of a fixed number of years and lives, the BatchCalcs service cannot.
Q: My organization does not follow the American Council on Gift Annuities rates. Can the BatchCalcs service use my organization's annuity rate schedule to lookup annuity rates?
A: Yes. We can create a custom gift annuity rate table for use with the BatchCalcs service for an additional fee of $150. If we have already created a custom annuity rate table for use with your copy of our GiftGuide, GiftCalcs or GiftStory products, the BatchCalcs service can use the same table for no additional charge.