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Measuring Your Impact With Salesforce Tableau

You know you are making a difference in your communities, but do you know how to showcase that impact to your grantmakers, board members, donors, and volunteers without spending countless hours building endless spreadsheets and reports?  Tableau helps you visualize impact in an easy-to-digest manner, regardless of the size or maturity of your organization, allowing you to maximize your impact along the way.

On a recent webinar, Cloud for Good teamed up with Tableau to talk about impact measurement best practices and to conduct a live demo showcasing Nonprofit Dashboards in Tableau (which are available to Tableau users completely free of charge) to help you get a head start on data analysis based on your organization’s unique needs.

Below, we’ll highlight some of the Q&A from the webinar but be sure to view the recorded playback to take in all the insights shared and hear more Q&A.

What’s changed in the last year that has made an important impact on nonprofits?

Dana Genson, Executive Vice President, Services, Cloud for Good: I think there are two things that have changed in the last year.  Certainly, we all can’t ignore COVID and the constraints it’s put on our organizations, so showing to your investors, to your donors, to your grantmakers that you are making an impact is even more critical as resources and donations have gone down.  And the next thing that happened is the technology has really evolved to make demonstrating impact more realistic, easier, and something that nonprofits can take on.  Nonprofits should not wait; this technology can easily create an impact that is ten-fold of the investment.

How long would it take me to get up and running with these Tableau data starters?

Matthew Platt, Solution Engineer, Tableau: Once you download the dashboards and you open that 14-day trial or open Tableau desktop, within about 15 minutes you can have them downloaded, you can have the trial started, and then you can go ahead and populate that Nonprofit Cloud data in there within about 15 minutes.

When you hook up Tableau to the Nonprofit Cloud, will it be able to pull in all the information that you have in Salesforce?  If we do implement one of these data starters for program management, can we still use Tableau for other areas of impact?

Matthew Platt: Definitely, I think the starter dashboards are a great jumping-off point to see what Tableau can offer.  We like to say that Tableau is horizontal in that it can span across different use cases.  Tableau can work across all clouds (Nonprofit Cloud, Health Cloud, Sales Cloud).  In terms of different use cases, Tableau could engage in annual reporting, community engagements, success criteria, and success indicators, things like these are what other nonprofits are currently using Tableau for.

Our nonprofit only has fundraising in our Salesforce instance, can we still see program management data from within Tableau?

Dana Genson: You certainly can!  While we encourage you to get your program management data into Salesforce, it’s always easier with Tableau taking data from multiple sources.  So while you can do fundraising out of the box, you can upload data into Tableau and have those same visualizations even if it’s outside of Salesforce.

If nonprofits want to start using Tableau data starters for their annual report for 2021, when should they start this implementation process?

Dana Genson: That’s a great question.  I always say to start now whether you’re on the annual year, on the calendar year, or on your own fiscal calendar.  You want to just start; you want to have quarter over quarter data.  Your annual report is a big thing, we’re not saying start tomorrow and produce it in your annual report but start now.  Start understanding how you would get this data, what are the KPIs you need to be researching, what are the data elements…but waiting isn’t going to get you there.

Can Tableau show me things that standard reports and dashboards can’t?

Dana Genson: Absolutely!  Think of Tableau as a canvas.  You know, the KPIs you want to see and data from different tables and sources, we can create all kinds of things within Tableau.  Tableau can also do “What if?” thinking.  Think about Salesforce reporting, that’s really transactional reporting.  In Tableau, you have many different options.

Do they have starter packs for other areas besides fundraising and program management?

Matthew Platt: They do, actually it’s great that has the power of behind us.  We have more sales, marketing, revenue, and opportunity-focused dashboards.

Do my Salesforce users need a Tableau license to see Tableau reports when they embed them into Salesforce?

Matthew Platt: You need a license on both sides.  The great thing about it is we can use that Salesforce identity provider to automatically authenticate whenever those dashboards are embedded into their live organizations.

If we’re interested in sharing our dashboards externally on our website, what’s the next step to make this happen?

Matthew Platt: I’d say the next steps to make that happen are to reach out to your account executive and we will talk through your options of what the external embedded SKU will look like specifically for your organization.

To learn more about how Tableau can help you and your organization work smarter, not harder, and hear more Q&A with our experts, watch the entire webinar here.

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