The University of Iowa Foundation Securely Supports a Mobile Workforce with Microsoft EMS


“Microsoft EMS has enabled traveling fundraisers to bmore productive by providing better mobile solutions without compromising security.” 

Albert Jagnow, IT Manager, University of Iowa Foundation



Business Challenges 

The University of Iowa Foundation was founded in 1956 to help the University of Iowa meet needs beyond those provided by State support, and to reach new levels of distinction by generating significant private gift support. The foundation is the preferred channel for making private donations to the University in order to support scholarships, breakthrough research, life-changing health care to innovative facilities, community outreach and global education. 

The University of Iowa Foundation supports a mobile workforce of fundraisers who spend a large part of the year traveling to visit high-profile donors in order to nurture ongoing relationships, demonstrate how the impact of past donations and receive additional donations. 

These mobile fundraisers, who generate the majority of the foundation’s funds to support education projects, needed a way access and update important client information from anywhere and on any device to facilitate these important onsite visits. However, the foundation collected this vital information with a CRM solution that limited fundraisers’ efforts; it only supported a limited range of devices and presented a number of issues with mobility and security.  

Although the foundation needed to provide fundraisers with the flexibility to access important client information wherever they were and from any device, these fundraisers were facilitating multi-million dollar donations and constantly dealing with high-risk personal information. “Because of the high profile data we are dealing with, security could not be compromised,” said Albert Jagnow, IT Manager at University of Iowa Foundation. “With technology changing so rapidly right now, the amount of traffic from mobile devices will soon exceed that of computers. We need to be able to leverage the latest devices in order to best support our fundraising efforts.” 


The University of Iowa Foundation connected with SADA Systems, a Microsoft National Solutions Provider, to explore a strategic IT solution to solve its business challenges. With the foundation already on Office 365 and aligned with Microsoft technology, Microsoft Enterprise Mobility Suite (EMS) provided a seamless, secure and cost-effective way to manage the foundation’s mobile workforce. 

“SADA Systems developed a customized strategy that leveraged Microsoft technology to effectively solve our business challenges,” said Jagnow. SADA implemented an Azure App Proxy with multi-factor authentication that could be used anywhere, from any device; allowing fundraisers always-on access the information they need without the actual web server being exposed through the network. SADA also integrated Microsoft Intune, allowing IT to effectively manage mobile devices and maintain control of sensitive information. 

Results and Benefits 

“Before they make an onsite visit to a constituent, our fundraisers need to see the donor’s profile, including history and the latest interactions – and they need to be able to securely access that from their phone 20 minutes before the meeting,” said Jagnow, “EMS has made that possible for us.” 

The ability to access donor information securely on any device has opened up the opportunity for University of Iowa Foundation fundraisers to work on whatever device they’re most productive, driving  overall donations and employee satisfaction. The effective use of mobile devices has also led to several other advancements: fundraisers have started sharing custom online proposals instead of printing lengthy paper documents, and are even delivering video messages while on the road. “With Intune, IT has enabled a mobile workforce strategy by taking control of the devices we’ve empowered people to use. We can protect sensitive data, wipe lost or stolen devices remotely, or even push out sets of apps and deliver content in a format consistent with those apps,” Jagnow shared. 

EMS has enabled this increased flexibility and productivity without a significant financial burden on the University of Iowa Foundation. As a fundraising organization, PR is extremely important, and the cost of a security breach would far outweigh the minimal cost of EMS to counteract risk with layers of powerful security measures.  

“With so many charitable opportunities out there, it is especially important to make that connection with donors and be able to show how their dollars affected real people,” said Jagnow. “Microsoft EMS has enabled traveling fundraisers to bmore productive by providing better mobile solutions without compromising security.” 

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