CASE STUDY: A Programmatic Approach to Mobilizing Feeding America's Salesforce CRM Migration

Salesforce Migration Technology & Staffing Readiness Assessment (2021-2022)

After 4 years of using Salesforce NGO Connect (“NGOC”) as their donor CRM, Feeding America was still struggling with system performance and adoption. In early 2021, Salesforce announced plans to retire NGOC, and at this critical inflection point Feeding America sought to better ready themselves by enlisting Justin and Simone to conduct a holistic readiness assessment of staffing and capacity for the system migration. This included validating the choice to use Salesforce NPSP and envisioning a future-state data infrastructure to replace roundData.

Feeding America began using NGOC as their core donor CRM in 2017, supported by a back-end SQL database (“roundData”) used for direct marketing campaign segmentation, off- platform data storage, and reporting & analytics. However, due to their large data volume, labor-intensive processes, high barrier to entry for new users, and resulting workarounds, the data quality and day-to-day user experience for fundraisers was greatly impeded.

Justin and Simone interviewed a broad swath of stakeholders to document the gap between NGOC’s capabilities and where fundraisers, Philanthropy Operations, and IT staff were experiencing the most friction (conducting 8 requirements sessions with 23 stakeholders and interviewing 26 stakeholders representing 8 departments). We assessed the entire CRM “program” end-to-end, analyzing the fit-for-purpose of the Salesforce platform and underlying data infrastructure, as well as how the NGOC product was managed; how users were trained and supported on their use of the system; and where additional technical resources and business processes were needed to keep the CRM performant.

We proposed a 9-month programmatic approach to preparation and mobilization for the CRM migration that included specialized staff roles to enable large-scale tech change; creating a Data Governance framework; establishing a project charter and RACI; and providing strategic communication templates. Justin and Simone also led the selection of a solution implementation partner to help ensure a strong, well-resourced migration team.