You’ve probably heard the term “digital transformation” quite a bit lately. Perhaps the pandemic required your organization to shift services online, leverage social media accounts, or run online fundraisers and events. Whether your nonprofit has been digitally sophisticated for years or has recently waded into digital waters, it’s important to evaluate your digital efforts.
Because of covid, community needs are greater than ever. You may have received extra funding (at least SOME good may have come out of this crisis), but now it’s back to business as usual, making it even more crucial to track your funding and how that funding ties to the people you serve. If you have one system for tracking funds and a separate one for case management, tracking can be quite complex.
According to the third edition of the Nonprofit Trends Report published by Salesforce.org, 71% of nonprofits that were highly digitally mature in 2020 met or exceeded their program delivery goals compared to 44% of organizations with low digital maturity. In the fourth edition of the report, they state that within three years, the majority of surveyed nonprofits expect to be doing the majority of their work online: “This potentially includes outsourcing jobs, relying on technology to run their operations instead of people, and fundraising 100% online.”
Their advice is to ramp your organization up quickly by adopting the appropriate technology. To become digitally mature, your organization must be able to leverage data to make informed decisions, reach new audiences, and forecast fundraising income. A strong organizational- change plan will be necessary to achieve your desired results.
Your nonprofit may be looking at a point solution or a new platform. Let’s talk about the differences.
A point solution solves a single, specific problem. It is a tool, product, or service that delivers on one organizational problem/solution.
A platform is often a group of technologies that are used as a base upon which other applications or technologies can be developed. It provides a foundation to match your unique organization. For Human Services organizations, this could include Intakes, Referrals, Fundraising, Grants Management, and Reporting, just to name a few of your potential needs.
Some factors to consider in your decision include Time, Budget, and Organizational Goals.
Time: Point solutions can be easier to install and solve a specific problem quickly. Platform solutions are long-term investments.
Budget: Point solutions may be more budget friendly in the short term. However, if your organization purchases multiple single-purpose solutions, costs begin to add up.
Organizational Goals: Decide where you want your organization to be in a few years. Do you need a quick fix or a platform that will scale? Platform solutions are more adaptable since developers can tailor the functionality to your specifications.
Top Considerations for Your Human Services Agency
You can read this article for more information about platform versus point solutions:
Flexibility: As we mentioned earlier, a platform can scale as your organization changes. It is customizable and can meet your unique needs.
Continuous improvements: Salesforce updates its platform three times per year, including new functionality for the changing needs of human services agencies. These updates are automatic; you do not pay extra.
Integration: Salesforce provides an effective flow of information among various programs. The data provides you with a holistic view of your clients and creates a more seamless experience for both your internal staff and the people you serve.
Powerful Reporting: Having one platform that contains all your data allows you to better measure your impact and report back to your funders or board of directors. Salesforce dashboards help you visually understand your data so you can make better-informed programmatic decisions.
We want to emphasize that the Salesforce platform is adaptable for human services organizations. Your organization can operate in a single software, improving transparency and communication among your departments, plus the platform will adapt to your organization’s growing needs. Changing how you do business can be a daunting prospect, but Provisio Partners will be there to help you every step of the way. We are a Premium Salesforce Implementation Partner and experts in health and human services; in fact, we exclusively implement Salesforce for human services agencies. We want to empower nonprofits like yours to focus on your mission and your community, not your technology.
Provisio Partners has expertise in the following areas:
- Developmental Disabilities Services
- Domestic Violence and Child Abuse
- Early Child and Child Care
- Energy and Weatherization
- Food Pantries, Food Insecurity, and Meals on Wheels
- Foster Care and Adoption
- Immigrant and Refugee Resettlement
- Job Training and Workforce Development
- Legal Aide
- Mental and Behavioral Health
- Shelter and Housing
- Unaccompanied Minors and Reunification
To learn more about how we can help your organization digitally transform, please visit us at provisiopartners.com. We would love to learn how we can best partner with you.
Marjorie lives in Saint Louis, Missouri. She received her Master’s degree in English from Truman State University. Her responsibilities at Provisio Partners include content creation and technical writing.