Last October, we told you how the National Christian Foundation (NCF) received $1.2 billion in grants for charities and 1,500 new online funds with their redesigned online donor portal created with Skuid and Salesforce.
I recently followed up with Steve Chapman, chief creative officer at NCF, and Jim Rich, director of product development, to talk about some of the lessons they learned while creating the new portal.
What were some of the challenges you experienced while creating your donor portal?
Steve: I don't think our organization really fully wrapped our minds around the flexibility that Skuid offers from a standard Salesforce stages layout.
We had to get control of the flexibility that was now available to us and learn when you should use that flexibility versus when you should just go with standard out-of-the-box offerings.
We learned when it's smart to customize, and when it's not smart to customize. I think that took us a while to figure out, and it still continues to be a challenge going forward for us.
How do you manage working with Salesforce and Skuid on a regular basis?
Steve: Now, I'd say NCF has a number of different developers working in Salesforce and Skuid, a couple have gone through Skuid training. But when we started our project with you guys, we basically had a CRM administrator, our Salesforce admin, and that was really it from a Salesforce standpoint.
Now we have a robust and very talented IT department who can serve our organization broadly, including our ERP systems that we're still connected to. But Salesforce was a pretty limited implementation for a time. It's really grown in the last few years.
With the help of Skuid, you have gained about $1.2 billion in grants to charities and have 1,500 new online funds?
Steve: Yeah that's right, we are one of the nation's largest sponsors of what are called donor-advised funds. Through those charitable vehicles, we've helped mobilize the resources that got us there and all of this is through the Salesforce portal that we launched with Skuid two years ago.
Wow, that's amazing! Were there any other challenges that arose during the implementation process?
Jim: I'll just say from a user interface standpoint and design, we wanted a pretty custom solution, and the end result was really good. We were able to do what we wanted to do by customizing or tweaking Skuid's native functionality.
Steve: Yeah, I mean we faced a number of different integrations with third party application challenges. We’ve been working very closely with Skuid's developers over the last couple of years in all of the challenges that we faced. I think it helped inform a lot of the product roadmap that went into what Skuid has been releasing for the last 6 or 8 months.