NPSP: Building a Foundation for Success
By: Scott Mostrom, Principal Consultant, ACF Solutions
The Nonprofit Success Pack is a signal of Salesforce.org’s ongoing commitment to providing the best technology to the nonprofit sector.
The Nonprofit Starter Pack, better known as NPSP, was first released by Salesforce.org in 2008. That also happens to be the same year I started working for ACF Solutions, implementing Salesforce for nonprofit organizations.
Over these past eight years, NPSP has been a mainstay of ACF’s work in the nonprofit sector. We have implemented it, or components of it, for the majority of nonprofits we have worked with, both large and small.
One of the questions we have consistently heard during that time, particularly from larger organizations, is “Why should we adopt something called “starter”? We have big, long-term plans for how we will use Salesforce. Will NPSP limit us?” The short answer is “No.” NPSP provides a flexible foundation upon which to build even large and complex CRM solutions.
That’s why I’m so pleased with the announcement from Salesforce.org that, while its initials will remain the same, the NPSP is now officially the “Nonprofit Success Pack.” More than just a name change, though, the announcement is a signal of Salesforce.org’s ongoing commitment to providing the best technology to the nonprofit sector.
Salesforce.org will continue to provide professional software product management for NPSP, with a team of top-notch product managers and developers, and will also continue to look to the ever-growing community of clients and partners to suggest, develop, and implement new features. Recent enhancements include full Lightning Experience compatibility, as well as increased support for languages and currency locales. Two of my favorite new features are Engagement Plans and Levels which, when used together, can automatically generate a set of tasks for your staff when a constituent reaches a certain milestone, such as having given over $5,000.
We have worked with clients who have used NPSP not only as the foundation for fundraising, but for other areas as well such as membership management, constituent services, program management, and marketing and communications. It provides a data architecture that is scalable across the whole organization.
When developing for Salesforce, there is normally a tension between keeping things open, flexible, and native versus building things that address specific functional needs but are more code-heavy and locked-down. I like that Salesforce.org is working hard to walk the line in between. They are taking a leadership role in addressing the needs of nonprofits on the platform but recognize that doing this right requires an open-source approach that leverages best-of-breed solutions from the AppExchange, and relies on implementation partners and the nonprofit community itself to innovate new solutions and best practices.
Kristin Sharpe, ACF Solutions President shared, “For the past eight years, the Nonprofit Starter Pack has been a foundational component for hundreds of projects ACF Solutions has delivered in the nonprofit sector. Today’s announcement is about more than giving NPSP a new, more fitting name. It is a sign of salesforce.org’s commitment to providing the best technology to nonprofits of all shapes and sizes. With the Nonprofit Success Pack, nonprofits have a solution that scales across the full enterprise and makes it easy to take advantage of best-of-breed applications in the Salesforce ecosystem and work with partners like ACF to tailor a solution to their specific needs.”
NPSP, you are off to a great start, and we look forward to many more years of success.
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