In a previously published blog, The Complete Picture of Alumni and Donors with Cloud for Good’s Advancement Accelerator, we showed how the connection between the Nonprofit Success Pack (NPSP) and Education Data Architecture (EDA) provides your advancement team with both alumni data as well as giving history. This gives you the most comprehensive information about your alumni and donors in one central location. Building on top of this connection, we have taken our Advancement Accelerator a step further so that you can create reports and dashboards to help gain insights from your data and enable your team to take action directly with alumni and donors on the Salesforce platform.
While NPSP was historically associated with the nonprofit sector, the versatility and customizability of the solution can also support large-scale fundraising for higher education institutions.
Understanding the Different Type of Reporting Options
Your data has a story to tell, and the types of reporting tools you use can help identify the questions your data answers. There are a few different types of reporting options within Salesforce, ranging from pre-defined standard reports to tools that provide business intelligence analytics to reveal giving trends, identify donor opportunities, and campaign goal measurements.
Salesforce Standard Reports + Dashboards:
Salesforce Standard Reports are designed to show you basic information about your accounts, contacts, opportunities, forecasts, donor pipelines, and leads. To segment these reports you can filter, group, and calculate metrics on a specific set of records. The information is then displayed back to users as rows of data, which can be grouped and summarized by rows or columns and presented as a visual chart. Once you have a group of reports, you can then add them to a single dashboard, allowing you to view these charts in a central location. This helps identify basic advancement information, including your major donors and total dollars raised from your specific group of donors. NPSP comes pre-loaded with community-contributed reports and dashboards covering donors, giving history, and more.
We often see advancement teams looking to run reports across Salesforce objects or incorporate them with data from other systems, such as SQL-based applications or Student Information Systems (SIS). Consider if you are looking to understand how alumni data such as GPA, the program they participated in, or how student activities impact their propensity to give.
This is where more powerful tools, like Tableau, come into play. Tableau empowers advancement teams with unlimited data exploration across data points from your multiple systems. It allows users to spot visual patterns in their data, and dive deeper to understand the key markers behind those patterns.
Previously known as Analytics Cloud, Tableau adds the power of artificial intelligence (AI) to your reports and dashboard. As you explore your data sourced from multiple systems, the software will help identify your patterns and the questions you should be asking about your data using AI. The solution enables your advancement team to predict outcomes and get AI-based guidance on the next best step to take in order to reach your desired goals. What is even more impressive is that Tableau is fully native to Salesforce, allowing it to be seamlessly woven into every action you take within the platform. You can drill into your reports and act on specific records, whether by collaborating with Salesforce internal communication tools, like Chatter, updating the record, or sharing the visualizations with your team.
Reporting with the Cloud for Good Advancement Accelerator:
While the tools mentioned above can help you create reports and dashboards, knowing which reports can impact your advancement is imperative when creating a quality user experience. With a deep understanding of the data and metrics that advancement teams need to both meet and exceed their fundraising goals, Cloud for Good has harnessed the power of AI through Tableau CRM, along with the other amazing features we’ve talked about in our previous blogs, and created pre-built, customizable dashboards to jump-start your reporting and illuminate the story your data is telling. For example, using the Cloud for Good Interest Application, which identifies donor preferences, paired with Salesforce reports can help you identify and add the best donors for your specific capital campaigns.
The Power Behind Your Data
Understanding your data and identifying trends within your data is crucial to your advancement team reaching your fundraising goals. That is why Cloud for Good has taken a strategic approach to reports and dashboards with our Advancement Accelerator. You will be able to answer questions, at a glance, while taking action directly within the Salesforce platform. Cloud for Good’s Advancement Accelerator will help to identify and answer the following types of questions:
- Which of my donors have not given in the last year or two years?
- Which of my donors can give more?
- How do parents of incoming students rank in our AI giving models?
- Is there any potential crossover with donors and opportunities for student success?
- Do most of our donors have a specific educational program, GPA, or have they previously engaged in specific student activities?
- What department or programs are your donors most inclined to give to?
With the Advancement Accelerator, your data will turn into a competitive advantage. It will allow you to work smarter, understanding which of your donors, or prospective donors, are more likely to give to your specific programs, which donors have the precursors to becoming major givers, and what next best action will help you push your donors through the advancement pipeline.
From the ability to upload gifts your way, connecting your alumni and donor information, or providing robust reporting, Cloud for Good’s Advancement Accelerator and Salesforce are empowering advancement teams to do more with their data. In our next installment, we’ll dive into the user experience and explore how the Advancement Accelerator can be used on-the-go with mobile, and how to empower your donors with a self-service donor portal.