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NPSP and Lightning: Why Make the Switch?

By November 4, 2016

By: Jessica Langelaan, MBA Nonprofit Practice Lead, Traction on Demand

With the re-launch of NPSP as the Nonprofit Success Pack, it’s a great time to focus on the power of the Salesforce Lightning Experience for nonprofit organizations. Last year, this new user interface was launched, and the team has worked tirelessly to prepare you and your organization to make the switch. Here is our list of the great features and functionality that you are missing out on if you don’t switch to Lightning and the resources to help you make the leap!

Why make the switch?

Intuitive and Sexy User Interface
The Lightning interface is what users expect of a CRM today. It is nice to look at and easy to use for everyone! Take a look at the details of a contact record. The simple way the fields are displayed makes it more readable:

User interface User interface

Activities tasksActivities has taken a big step forward both as part of the page layout and intuitive functionality. With the change of language to “Next Steps,” it’s easy to capture interactions and future tasks on each record, and check off each task you complete.

Reports and Dashboards
The home pages for Reports and Dashboards has been redesigned to make it easier for you to find and create your reports and dashboards. Once you create a report or dashboard, you will see how the experience and the outcomes in Lightning take the robust Salesforce reporting engine and give you, and your users, the kinds of reports and summaries that help to tell the data stories needed to prepare for a grant application or board meeting, or support your organization’s mission.

List views
How often do you build reports or list views to answer a question in an instant? List views in Lightning give you the ability to apply a filter within the list, helping to answer an “in the moment” question you have without creating more data debt with unnecessary list views or reports.

More to come!
As the Salesforce Winter ’17 Release goes live you’ll find improvement to the Lightning Experience. A few of our favourites include the navigation bar moving to the top of the page, the ability to expand or collapse a detail section and Chatter Announcements that can now be emailed to group members – regardless of email preference!

How to get started

    1. Complete the Migrate to Lightning Experience Trail on Trailhead for great hands-on learning.
    2. Follow the rest of Salesforce’s three step plan for getting yourself, your team and your instance ready for Lightning.
    3. Join the Power of Us Hub group dedicated to nonprofit users leveraging the Lightning Experience.

Last words with a bit of caution
As with all new products, there are a few items to take note of as you make the transition. Our team still loves to do a lot of their customization work in Classic mode. There’s nothing wrong with that, but it does mean you’ll need to run a few different browsers so you can be in Classic and Lightning at the same time in the same org.

Almost all of the NPSP has made the leap – with new functionality and an upgraded look and feel – but you’ll find a few challenges including the New Contact Donation button. It is a URL “hack” functionality that was never fully support in Classic and doesn’t render in Lightning. The team at are working hard to make it all work and have offered up great alternatives for those that have made the leap!

Welcome to the future…Welcome to the Nonprofit Success Pack.

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