NPSP features & extensions

Nonprofit Success Pack:

was built for, and with, our community of over 47,000 nonprofits, with out-of-the-box capabilities and a relationship-first view of all the people in your universe. Free and open source, it turns the #1 CRM for businesses into a Constituent Relationship Management system for nonprofits.

In nutshell, this thing is a bunch of managed packages installed on top of standard Salesforce, which are specifically designed for non-profit needs and help them manage donors, fundraising and a few other things.

What always impress me is that it can do much more plus a lot of those things any company can find use for. Or put it the other way around – a lot of non-profits don’t really know what all it can do besides the basics. To iterate on that – not even the Nonprofit Cloud Consultant certification covers them.

Plus one more great thing – most of the things mentioned here are accessible in public repo under the BSD-3-Clause licence, which allows you to re-use it in your own development.

Households

One of the most obvious things in NPSP are households, which automatically creates a new account for any contact, but you can put multiple contacts under one household. No person accounts, no bucket account, but some logic behind.

When we do NGO implementations in Czech Republic, we speak about this feature every then and now, but surprisingly, at the end, rarely implement it. The reason behind is, that it is pretty hard to manage people when they get together (actually this part is doable) and when they separate (here is the really scare part). So it is better and cheaper to communicate with each donor separately rather then try to somehow manage it.

Relations

What is super awesome feature in all the „new“ clouds (read NPSP, EDU, Financial and Health) are relations between people. For some reason Sales Cloud only cares about linking people to companies, but relations between people are probably even more important and I’m still surprised not many companies want something like that.

Small but lovely detail is, that when you create a relation, it automatically create the relation from the other side and change its name accordingly (child vs parent, brother vs sister). And yes, this part is in the certification.

Relationships Viewer showing Contact Valencia Robledo connected to two additional Contacts.

Soft Credits

Another thing in which Czech non-profits are not interested. We are awesome in tracking hard credit (money they actually got), but they don’t care about who influenced it. Together with the relations this might be super powerful for seeing the right picture about my donors, at the same time put additional effort to get such info.

Recurring Donations

In every single org we have something we called „kočkopes“ (mix of cat and dog). Darujme, our biggest donation portal probably everyone uses, allows to track recurring donations. Integration done by CRM pro neziskovky, can get this info to Salesforce and organisations want to see that the donation was part of this regular payment.

Surprisingly so far I only saw handful of organisation who identify donors as regular donors and only one of them – over all those years – attributes donations paid on bank account correctly to appropriate category as well.

But probably none of them use it for any forecasting, how much money they have „guaranteed“ in a few months.

Multiple payment donations are kind of similar, I saw just one organisation handle this part in some way, but that was more about the related contract they need to generate for it.

Engagement Plans

This is something everyone should use and also something similar to what a lot of 3rd party tools do – manage tasks which need to happen when specific thing occur.

Manage Engagement Plan Tasks screen

Together with NPSP Levels, where you can define automatic transitions of donor’s statuses based on specified thresholds it can lead to better handle of repeated donors.

CampaignTools

This repo catch my attention just because of the name. Four years old, no description but it looks like something which can help you manage campaign members and filter them from other campaign. Something like Campaign Combiner – an app I found a long time ago, presented on NPSP Day in Amsterodam (my first entry into the community world) and which is not available on AppExchange anymore, but you can still find the page on its author website including a link to the repo.

Program Management Module (PMM)

Extra package you need to install if you want to use it. Quite often campaigns might be enough, but maybe you want to be more structured as your programs have services, cohorts, schedules, etc.

Program Management Module Entity Relationship Diagram

Hmm, maybe we can even use it for training and conferences?

Volunteers

Our typical solution for volunteers is a checkbox on contact, when the organisation is extra demanding we add a picklist with skills and maybe an extra object to track what works they provided, so we are able to report based on it.

This package from Salesforce provides something extra. It provides web page where volunteers can sign up, search engine, definition of jobs and shifts and reporting. From what I can see the only downside is that it counts with „regular“ volunteers, who can dedicated you a time on every Thursday, not that great when you look for people who might have 3 hours any day in a week.

A diagram showing the relationship between a Campaign, Volunteer Jobs, and Volunteer Shifts

Outbound Funds (OFM)

There is the minority of non-profit organisations who are on the „other“ side and provide grants for others.

Outbound Funds Module Entity Relationship Diagram

So if you want to allow people or organisation to request money from you this is the right package. Just list your program, let people request money from them, approve requests, monitor reimbursements and link it with GAU, where the money are allocated from donations. Great finish of the whole fundraising effort and you can see the flow of money from the beginning till the end.

As an addition to Outbound Funds you can also get Grant Management, which is a paid add-on with a few of extra features, most important of them probably being the grant portal/community.

Accounting Subledger

The latest addition – and a paid add-on – to the whole money thing, which should help to „translate“ the donations you enter into Salesforce into accounting system thus simplify the whole communication between fundraisers and accountants.

Well, that would be nice, from my experience those are two different worlds which needs to communicate and it leads to a lot of confusions on what should appear where and when.

Nonprofit Cloud Case Management

Another paid add-on which sits on top of Program Management Module and well … should simplify the case management. But after going through the Trailhead module you can see it is much more. Kind of lead management at the beginning, something similar to Engagement Plans, recording of the whole interaction inside specific program plus tons of sexy looking custom components.

The Case Management homepage

Also the data model might provide some clarity but I would say in this case the Trailhead is better as it gives you better idea how to use it. Worth additional 360$/user/year?

Case Management/PMM Entity Relationship Diagram

Elevate

This program is – sadly – not available in Europe, costs just 5000$/year and provide the important „beginning“ for the whole fundraising – ability to create Giving pages and process payments including recurring payments.

Some reporting, tight integration with Salesforce NPSP, yes, this looks super cool. I’m just curious how much costs extra transactions (as just 5000 is included in the price) but even though the price looks high it might be very well worth it, taking into account that banks usually take 1 – 2 % from transactions.

Community

This is not module, this is the whole ecosystem around. Non-profits have their own „success“ community called Power of Us Hub to discuss all the things (and there are some long terms plans to merge it with the normal Trailblazer Community.

The second great thing are community sprints, which anyone can join and help create something good, which will be later on shared with everyone. The next one will be at the beginning of February plus you can also monitor relevant repos with additional useful things (event app, short videos of features, data generation tool, membership management and much more.

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