By: Amy Bucciferro
Last year, Arkus inaugurated the Pro Bono Day tradition as a way to give back to our communities using what we know best.
When organizations think about giving back, the first thought is usually expressed in dollars and the second in the time and energy of volunteers. Then there are organizations like Salesforce who have found great value in direct supply of their ultimate asset, the product itself; with their Power of Us Program they donate 10 Salesforce subscriptions to eligible nonprofit and higher education institutions. Working with nonprofit organizations that use Salesforce, we see the success of this model. So, if a company can do great good by doing what they do best, shouldn’t we all strive for the same?
In a professional services organization the product is ultimately the collective skill and experience of the team. To take this out of abstraction and into a real product we could deliver back to the community, Arkus set up a specially tailored Pro Bono Day to assist local nonprofit organizations who are using Salesforce by sharing key knowledge and making our own people available to answer these organizations’ most pressing questions.
We wanted to make sure that the event had something to offer for a wide variety of participants, that meaning in both the type of organization and skill level of their delegates. To accomplish this, we offered two detailed presentations related to Nonprofit Starter Pack given by members of our team that work with it every day. One was on the fundraising and development aspects of the application and the other specific to volunteer management using Volunteers for Salesforce. The presentations were not just about these features in a general sense, they dove into the nuts and bolts, aiming to really help participants who were managing their Salesforce organization or envisioning how to apply the capabilities.
While the sessions were going on, other team members scattered into private areas and conference rooms to work directly with individuals who had come with specific questions about their organization’s Salesforce dreams and challenges. We formed adhoc teams to work up rapidfire solutions, including everything from envisioning a roadmap to troubleshooting a specific detail. Ultimately, this was more than a service to our guests and a fun and exciting exercise for the Arkus team, it was a chance to connect and be inspired by each other.
Of course, what really makes the event is the people who attend. We promoted the event with our local Nonprofit User Group, and were rewarded with a highly engaged and eager group of participants. And, when we asked for feedback, they obliged. So, to everyone who asked for more, more, more: look out, because we will be doing it again soon, with (you asked for it) longer sessions, too.
For us, doing Pro Bono Days is about more than just the desire to give back to both the Salesforce community and organizations doing good for the greater community, it’s a direct ￼application of the principles of education and empowerment that are always part of our work. Working as we do with nonprofit organizations big and small, we understand how important it is to have a skilled and empowered staff and get the most out of every tool. We plan to make a habit of this, and maybe inspire other organizations to pinpoint how to apply their ultimate expertise to something the community can directly enjoy.
Learn more about Arkus at ArkusInc.com.