salesforce administrator

NPSP: So Much Change, So Little Time

So Much Change, So Little TimeHousehold Naming & Primary Contacts

There have been many big changes lately to the Nonprofit Success Pack that a few new features may have been missed.

For example, you can now adjust the universal Household Name settings so that only the Primary Contact of a Household is included within a Household Name and within associated Formal and Informal Greetings for all Households in your Salesforce org.

Let’s say there are two members of a Household: Fred and Wilma Flinstone and that Wilma is set as the Primary Contact. Now you can adjust the Household Naming settings so that only Wilma’s name is used for purposes of naming.

In the example above the result of these changes would be:

Household Name = Wilma Flintstone Household

Formal Greeting = Mrs. Wilma Flintstone

Informal Greeting = Wilma

To make the adjustment go into Household Name Settings within the NPSP Settings utility.  Now update the following values within Household Name Settings:

  • Name Connector = (leave empty)
  • Name Overrun = (leave empty)
  • Contact Overrun Count = 1

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After making this adjustment you’ll need to use the Refresh Household Names batch feature to force an update of Household Naming throughout your records.

A word of caution: these changes will apply to all Households in Salesforce.

An Alternative: Case-by-Case Changes

If you only want to limit the Household Name to the Primary Contact on a case-by-case basis, then utilize the Manage Household button on individual Household records.

The Managed Household feature will provide more granular control by allowing a user to exclude specific contacts from Household Naming fields. In the example below, the child within a household is excluded.

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To learn more about Household Naming check out this article from the Power of Us Hub: https://powerofus.force.com/kA080000000CsCJ?srPos=0&srKp=ka0&lang=en_US

 

#LevelUp for Success with NPSP Engagement Plans and Levels

#LevelUp for Success with NPSP Engagement Plans and Levels

The new Nonprofit Success Pack takes moves management to the next level (pun totally intended!) with native tools including Engagement Plans and Levels.

These amazing new tools provide development staff with great efficiency in managing cultivation efforts and planning for the next “ask.” Engagement Plans leverage the power of both Activities and Tasks (including Reminders and Recurring Tasks) which allow staff to easily spin up and follow a plan for cultivation without needing to install another app.

Staff can start with an Engagement Plan template - based on tested and proven paths - and then tailor Engagement Plans to align with a donor’s interests. Gone are the days of missing important steps in a cultivation process because you failed to create a Task!

My personal favorite new feature is NPSP Levels.

Being able to track giving levels, plus have future gifts automatically adjust a donor’s giving level, and then segment Contacts or Households for targeted marketing according to giving level have long been popular requests from our clients. We achieved this through a combination of tools including reports, roll-up summaries, custom fields, and Process Builder, but took several “extra” steps for something so fundamental to moves management.

Now, with NPSP Levels, development staff can easily set up Levels based on Minimum or Maximum Amounts for a variety of fields (see below) on the Account, Contact, or custom objects.

levels

And, as for the requirement that Levels update dynamically; now Levels are automatically updated nightly when batches run. If that’s too long to wait, then you can also push an update through the NPSP Settings “Run Batch” utility.

Add an Engagement Plan to the Level to launch a series of cultivation efforts when someone hits a specific Level, and then you have one efficient moves management machine!

I’m thrilled to introduce these new features to our clients and watch them #LevelUp for Success with the new Nonprofit Success Pack! I’d love to hear about how these new features impact your development team, so please send in your stories via Twitter: respond via Twitter!

PS –NPSP Product Managers: Over time, we’ve added handy dandy badges representing the different giving levels by using image formula fields. With the badges, development staff and volunteers have a simple visual cue to inform their real-time engagement with the client. Sounds like an idea for a future release to me!

Excuse me while I go full nerd.

Noob Over the coming weeks, some exciting news will be coming from Salesforce.org (shhh...it’s still a secret). In anticipation, those of us at Now IT Matters started talking about “Leveling Up.” Instantly, I recalled my younger years of playing video games and how I would “ Level Up.”

rightarrowWhen I was just a young Salesforce Noob (this is gamerspeak for “Newbie”), you could think of me as this guy: new to the game, zero skills and no idea where to go.

Things started to change when I was introduced to some tools for my quest: the Power of Us Hub, the Salesforce Success Community, and the myriad of bloggers, tweeters and podcasters among cyberspace2.  

leftarrowPretty soon, I leveled up and got my Administrator Certification.  

And then, I felt more like this guy.

As I discovered more about the amazing ways to configure Salesforce I  trained myself on a little quest with the support of my coworkers and the Salesforce community. With each new skill,  release under my belt or Salesforce certification, I leveled up even more. levelup

Sure, I’ve have much to learn and have a long way to go, but I don’t see this Salesforce quest as ever being “Game Over.” Why? Because Salesforce is constantly innovating by adding so many different products and platforms and I know I have more time to #LevelUp.

And so do you.  

Now, I know sometimes it can be daunting. You’re running from a special event to a board meeting, then to a crisis with a client and back again. It probably feels as if  you barely have time to complete your day to day work, not to mention the new responsibilities received from your last meeting. It seems honing your Salesforce skills is not a priority.

However, think about this: if you could save just one hour a week by automating some arduous or tedious task using Salesforce would you do it? If so, that’s 52 hours a year you could be doing the parts of your job which you love the most. Would it be worth calling another donor to tell him about the work that your nonprofit is doing? Would it benefit you to spend more time with the client who is demanding face-to-face attention? Of course it would.

Salesforce can be so much more than just your “database.” It can be the center of collaboration, communication and, ultimately, the reason for your success.  

  • Run your programs directly from Salesforce;
  • Drive program and employee performance through solid metrics in reports and dashboards;
  • Engage with each other over Chatter; or
  • Open up your organization by using Salesforce Communities, then inviting  donors, volunteers or clients to communicate with each other.

The same tools which  helped me #LevelUp are now available to you, too. To take advantage of the toolset you can:

  • Join your local Nonprofit User Group - Connect with other nonprofit Salesforce users and learn from them, the resources they offer and the guest speakers they invite.
  • Complete a Trailhead trail - It’s a fun training program that can teach you Salesforce Basics all the way through Advanced Apex!
  • Get on Twitter - Although it may sound strange some of the most amazing Salesforce users out there are actively engaged on Twitter by sharing best practices, tips and tricks and more.

So, if you’re stuck and not sure what to do, how to do it or even if you should, then give us a call.   

We’ll help your organization to #LevelUp.

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#LevelUp with NiM this Fall!

#LevelUp with NiM this Fall!

Every fall I find myself ready to “level up” - to improve my game in work and life.

Perhaps it’s a byproduct of life being divided into semesters for so many years, but without fail, I’m hit with an infusion of inspiration around the time that school starts.

For many years, I tried to resist starting new endeavors in September.

Couldn’t I tackle my goals and achieve the same success in February?

Turns out the answer is a resounding NO!

With time, I’ve surrendered to, and have come to embrace, this rhythm.

So, when the school supplies start filling the stores and the air turns a tad cooler... I pay attention: it’s prime time for professional growth! 

Recently, I’ve been asking myself:

What personal and professional goals can I jumpstart in the fourth quarter and achieve this coming year?

How can I align my professional goals to benefit #TeamNiM and our clients?

Changes to the Salesforce Ecosystem and the Role of Consultants

Like me, our Executive Team tries to pay attention to patterns and trends, too. We've been discussing NiM’s history and identifying game-changers in the Salesforce ecosystem for nonprofits since our inception. Included in that list are the introduction of the Power of Us Hub, Girlforce, NPSP3, and Trailhead! These are some mighty big changes!

I recall having conversations in 2013 with stakeholders who had never heard of Salesforce. Fast forward to today, when most of our clients have legacy CRM solutions - and are eager for change. For some nonprofits, use of a CRM solution has highlighted the fact that their business processes need adjustment. For others, their business processes are first-rate and they desire a CRM solution that can be customized to better match their needs.

Either way, by the time most new clients approach us now, they’re convinced Salesforce is the solution for them and they’ve already…

  • Initiated a new instance of Salesforce
  • Installed the NPSP
  • Applied for the Power of Us grant
  • Logged in to the Power of Us Hub, and
  • Taken a Trailhead module or two!

Nonprofit Salesforce professionals are equipped with tools and resources unlike any they’ve had before. Exciting enhancements on the horizon point to increased collaboration, community building, and real-time constituent engagement to drive social impact.

Given all of the changes in the ecosystem, has the role of consultants changed, too?

We think the answer is yes, and wonder - 

Instead of needing an expert to do “all the Salesforce things”, do clients need a personal trainer?  

Someone who will:

  • Ask important questions and strategically advance the organization’s mission?
  • Equip Salesforce Admins to accelerate their own learning and realize their full potential?
  • Support and challenge clients as they level up?

Level Up

From day one, our mission has been “to be a sustainable company that makes the world a better place by increasing the capacity of nonprofits through the development of brilliant staff.”

When Tim wrote that mission, he was originally thinking of NiM’s own staff. Equipping NiM staff to level up has always been a core company value. But, our mission and methodology support equipping nonprofits and their Salesforce Admins to level up, too!

The more we’ve considered being a personal trainer who equips nonprofits and nonprofit Admins to level up, the more excited we’ve become.

From now until Dreamforce, #TeamNiM will be sharing what #LevelUp means to them and their goals to #LevelUp. Along the way, I’ll share our plans for NiM to #LevelUp as well.

In the meantime, I’d love to hear from you:

What is your organization doing to #LevelUp? (Tweet your answer)

What goals do you have as an #AwesomeAdmin? (Tweet your answer)

How should NiM #LevelUp in our role as your #LevelUp Partner? (Tweet your answer)