A Difference of Needs vs. Requirements

needs vs wantsYou are so ready to get started on this project! And you’ve already made a helpful list of your needs to give to your project manager. So why did your project manager take one look at your list of needs and say that you needed have a bunch of meetings to identify your requirements? Everything you need is laid out right in front of them! Why can’t you just get started right now?

It turns out, needs and requirements are not the same thing. Understanding the difference will help insure that you get exactly what you need out of your Salesforce implementation. Read on to learn what project managers look for when defining requirements and how you can help get your project started on the right foot.

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SYBUNT Donor Segmentation

Here's a common question we are asked, "How many of my donors have given some year in the past, but have unfortunately NOT given yet this year?" This is the classic SYBUNT segmentation nonprofits need to perform quickly for strategic fundraising. The reason is that your past donors are typically your best candidates for future donations. But how you find these donors is not exactly clear. The Nonprofit Starter Pack from makes it possible to pull a very simple SYBUNT list using reports, but it doesn't go quite far enough for most of our clients. In this post we explore the differences between NPSP SYBUNT and KELL360 SYBUNT reporting.

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Donor Profile Document Merge

Here's a common question we get asked: "How can I quickly create a document/PDF for a specific donor that shows the most important information we have on record?". This is a classic "donor profile" report/mail merge that many of our clients need available at their fingertips. With Salesforce it's all possible and there are many available solutions to deliver such a report. After trying them all, we've settled on what we at KELL believe to be a true best practice approach for this common need.

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A Seat at the Table

st anthonys casestudyHaving worked with St. Anthony’s since 2012, I have personally seen the impact of their Salesforce revolution.  While it has been wonderful to see their transformation over the years, my mind was completely blown after a visit to their facilities during Dreamforce last year.  I have always been amazed by how much they do with so little.  Every day, the organization serves more than 1,600 poor and homeless individuals in San Francisco. Volunteers devote more than 130,000 hours each year to transforming lives. St. Anthony’s started in 1950 as a dining room, but now offers a variety of services, including health care and addiction recovery.

By 2012, St. Anthony’s had outgrown its manual volunteer processes.  Pen-and-paper check-ins required staff to re-enter all the shift details at the end of day. Multiple databases made volunteer activity difficult to view and track. The organization needed an integrated system to track volunteer time, show gratitude and measure impact.

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Why Householding is Important

draw crayon kid wallA friend of mine purchased a car last year.  She did her research, found the car she wanted, negotiated the price with the dealer and drove it off the lot. When she paid for it, she signed the check.  She added her husband to the title, but she was listed first.  A few months later her husband receives a birthday card from the dealership. What?! Her birthday was weeks before his but she didn’t receive any card. This, rightfully, annoyed my friend and she posted on the dealership's Facebook page to express her concerns.  The dealership tried to make it up to her with an apologetic card and some cookies, but as my Mom has always told me, you never get a second chance to make a first impression [She also says everything looks better with lipstick.  After having our 3 year old “paint” our master bedroom with lipstick, I can say that bright red lipstick does not make white blinds look any better.].

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Salesforce User Groups

Some of the best things about Salesforce is that it is customizable, flexible, and continuously improving with enhancements. Some of the worst things for the Salesforce Administrator is that Salesforce is customizable, flexible, and continuously improving with enhancements. It’s that double edge sword that makes it so wonderful and so difficult to navigate at the same time.

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Introducing KELL360

This is not your ordinary product announcement. We’ve all seen the typical announcement before, "We are thrilled to announce the availability of KELL360, a complete nonprofit fundraising solution built on the platform, blah blah", often devoid of substance and answers; more fluff, less stuff. You know what I’m talking about, and we're not going to bore you with it again. At KELL we don’t like to follow others, we choose to blaze new paths. That’s why KELL360 is not like your typical product. It’s a new approach that is less radical and more logical. Less transformative and more practical. That said, we are still excited to finally talk publicly about what we hope will change the way nonprofits choose Salesforce.

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Installing AppExchange Apps 101

The Salesforce AppExchange is awesome, woohoo! Apps, apps and more apps. Let’s go install new apps in Salesforce, let's go, let's go! Wait, slow down there tiger. Let’s be smart about this.

appexchange fundallocations 400When talking with Salesforce newbies the iPhone analogy is often used to help describe the AppExchange; however, in practice the two ecosystems and technology couldn’t be more different. With iPhone apps the technology is fairly well partitioned. Meaning, if you install a new calendar app because it’s got a fresh new feature then later decide to delete the app, your main calendar is likely immune. Not so much with the AppExchange. You must be very careful when considering how each application might affect your data and other processes. Your data is so incredibly valuable to your nonprofit, so protect it.

So with nearly 3,000 apps and about 2,000 components, how can you make sure the tool you select will work for your organization? Here are three things you should do before installing a new app in your Salesforce instance.

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NPSP Opportunities and Payments 101

Nonprofits starting with Salesforce and the Nonprofit Starter Pack (NPSP) can be very exciting. The functionality is amazing and the flexibility to store additional information on your constituents is something most “off the shelf” products cannot compete with. Oh the places we can store stuff!

Yet building a valuable fundraising system means ensuring that we’re not just recording data, but rather driving great decisions. Therefore, understanding the use of Opportunities and Payments is central to a decision-minded design. (Note: “Opportunities” and “Payments” are the default labels for these objects and can be renamed, so it’s possible your Salesforce instance uses something different.)

Read more: NPSP Opportunities and Payments 101


  • App Focus

    We take a look at the latest Salesforce apps for nonprofits

  • Salesforce Foundation

    Our take on the latest news from the Salesforce Foundation

  • Dreamforce

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  • KELL Culture

    A look inside KELL and at our fabulous team of superheroes.

  • Best Practices

    Our clients ask a lot of great questions! They want their Salesforce data to provide answers. It's our job to make the technology provide the answers quickly and efficiently. These solutions have helped us to develop hundreds of best practice solutions for nonprofits using Salesforce.