- 76% of nonprofits lack a data strategy. Data Lake for Nonprofit Cloud, Powered by Amazon Web Services (AWS), is a new open-source offering that enables Salesforce Nonprofit Cloud customers to easily transform their data into actionable insights with visual analytics, ultimately helping to drive more informed decisions and better outcomes.
- The solution will be available on GitHub as an open-source offering, enabling nonprofits to tailor it to their specific needs and improve the technology continuously over time.
Nonprofits are finally emerging from the massive challenges brought forth by the pandemic. The savviest among them are taking what they learned and preparing for what might come next.
Data is critical to that effort. Data Lake for Nonprofit Cloud, Powered by AWS, is a new open-source solution designed to make it even easier for organizations to leverage their Salesforce Nonprofit Cloud data and create a rich visualization tapestry to drive better outcomes for their organizations.
David Ragones, SVP & GM of Nonprofit Cloud at Salesforce, details this new automated offering – which will GA this winter – and explains why all nonprofits must have a unified data strategy.
Q: What are you hearing from Salesforce’s nonprofit customers as they work to redefine their strategies for the future?
They’re concerned about whether they’re going to be agile enough moving forward — when the next crisis hits. Nonprofits want to deliver a consistent experience that brings together all the different systems they have within their four walls.
They also want to be able to respond to the next urgent need; whether it’s Ukraine or something else, because nonprofits are on the front lines. They need to be able to move quickly to respond to challenges and crises.
Q: Looking to the post-pandemic future, what are the biggest challenges nonprofits are facing?
One big challenge we found was that 76% of nonprofits lack a data strategy, and almost the same amount report difficulty when it comes to sharing data across their organizations. This is regularly compounded by other factors, including navigating between legacy and new systems as well as the fact that many nonprofits lack the in-house expertise needed to make sense of these systems.
At the same time, as nonprofits transitioned to digital-first models over the past couple of years, they started generating far more data. This data holds enormous potential for nonprofits, whether for fundraising, community building, or identifying where their work is making the most impact.
So the hurdle nonprofits must jump over is siloed data across their organizations while also capitalizing on the treasure trove of data they are now generating.
Q: How are Salesforce and AWS partnering to help nonprofits conquer this challenge?
Data Lake for Nonprofit Cloud, Powered by AWS, integrates Salesforce’s data model for nonprofits, Nonprofit Success Pack, with AWS Data Lake and analytics platforms like Tableau to help nonprofit customers accelerate impact and engagement by simplifying their data operations.
This helps make it easier for nonprofits to connect their Salesforce Nonprofit Cloud data, and enables organizations to begin developing a unified data strategy with technology like MuleSoft and Tableau – all within AWS.
Then, through an integration with Tableau, organizations can gain the actionable insights they need to make smart decisions and data visualizations that can better communicate their findings.
The entire process will be a guided flow, making it easy for anyone to set up – no coding required. With the power of automation, this new solution creates the automated connection between Salesforce and the data model in AWS, a data synchronization schedule, and analytics reporting and visualization within Tableau.
I also want to note that we’re working with key System Integrator (SI) launch partners including Cloud for Good, Coastal Cloud, and Slalom to bring this solution to market.
Q: Why are Salesforce and AWS offering this as an open-source product?
For Salesforce, this partnership connects back to our heritage — what we’ve done at Salesforce with the 1:1:1 model to give back to the community. AWS also has a strong history of working with and supporting nonprofits. By working together on this product, Salesforce and AWS aim to give back to the nonprofit community through technology that the entire community can benefit from.
We saw this before with the Nonprofit Success Pack, which, because it was made open source, has continuously grown and been improved upon over the last 10-plus years.
When Salesforce and AWS publish this new automation for free on GitHub, nonprofits and partners across the entire ecosystem can take advantage of what we’ve done to drive value and better outcomes for their organizations. And, they can customize it for the exact cause, cure, or mission that’s relevant to them.
Q: What is the business impact for nonprofits?
Because it connects to Salesforce’s Nonprofit Success Pack, Data Lake for Nonprofit Cloud, Powered by AWS, is designed to enable organizations to bring their fundraising, marketing, and program data into one view, giving nonprofits a real-time look at what is and isn’t working to drive better resource allocation and decision making.
The cherry on top is nonprofits can feed that data into an analytics platform like Tableau to not only help them better tell impact stories through rich visualizations, but also gain actionable insights to make smarter decisions. In the past, it would’ve taken tremendous resources, time, and technical skill to implement a system like this, so what makes the solution such a game changer for nonprofits is that basically anyone can get started with a few clicks.
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