Salesforce Update

By Lanee Jansen

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At the end of last year we published a blog post declaring our plans to do a second major re-configuration of our Salesforce platform.  8 months later we are proud to declare that the project is done and Salesforce is running smoothly (or at least, as smoothly as one could expect it to).  I thought I would write a little update for those of you who are also wrestling with the benevolent beast that is Salesforce; perhaps our experience will be useful. Here’s what Salesforce does for us: - Tracks all of our investments - Stores our contacts and relationships (including interactions and connections between members of our network) - Generates reports and visuals of our data - Tracks value added and leveraged funds for each of our partners - Tracks milestones and metrics from our partners - Schedules check-ins and grants due

Here’s what we recommend to others (if customizing SF): - Hire a great consultant who wants to understand your organization and goals - it makes all the difference - Take the time to really figure out what it is you want from the platform before you begin - If what you thought you wanted doesn’t work, throw it out immediately and start over - Try using Salesforce for things you didn’t think you needed it to do - the possibilities are almost limitless and you’ll likely discover value you didn’t know was there - Test out a few apps, that’s what free trials are for - Find out how other organizations are using Salesforce