Why an Open Platform Matters

By Salesforce.org | November 9, 2016 | Nonprofit, Nonprofit Success Pack, Partners

By: Michael Lukich, Vice President of Marketing, Wealth Engine

We are excited to partner with Salesforce.org in its launch of the Nonprofit Success Pack (NPSP). As you have undoubtedly read through various blog posts or press releases, this is an exciting advancement in Salesforce’s offerings designed to help nonprofits further increase the impact on the communities they serve.

While there are a lot of things to be excited about with the NPSP, one of main reasons we’re truly excited, is that it is a truly open platform.

There has long been a debate in the technology community of open versus closed platforms. Before I explain why we prefer open ones, let’s take a minute to explain the difference.

An open system is typically open to all providers and technologies. Anyone who wants to develop a solution for the platform can do so. A closed system is usually controlled by a single entity and limits the services or technologies that can work within the platform. Both have their benefits, but in this instance, we are happy that Salesforce kept it open.

While there are many reasons why an open platform matters, here are a few that may be important as you start to engage with NPSP.

Customization

Every organization is different. What is important to one organization may not be the same as the nonprofit next door. One of the main benefits of an open platform is the ability to customize to fit your unique needs. You can easily expand your implementation of Salesforce and integrate thousands of AppExchange apps, such as our WealthEngine app, to build the solution that works for you.

Flexibility to Changes

We all know technology changes at a rapid pace. Sometimes it seems as if as soon as you make the effort to implement a new technology, it’s outdated 6 months after installation. Open platforms offer much more flexibility to these changes and make your experience (somewhat more) future-resistant. Upgrades are much easier and allow you to keep as up-to-date as you like.

Community Support

When you have a community of experts and organizations that have a shared interest in success, everyone wins. Open platforms give end-users the capability to engage with an established community of users, vendors, and partners. Most importantly it allows nonprofits to learn what works for others and share implementation tricks and best-practices.

These are just a few of the many benefits an open platform can provide. An open platform is only as good as the network of partners within it. Luckily, there are some great product and implementation partners that are a part of the NPSP.

With all of the benefits of NPSP and the great partners that are here to help, nonprofits can truly increase the impact on the communities that they serve!