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Alumni Relations and Fundraising With Salesforce

Alumni Relations and Fundraising with Salesforce

Gordon College, a Massachusetts-based institution, faced a challenge in managing information, engagement, and outreach with donors, alumni, faculty, and students. As a private institution it is essential for Gordon College to create healthy long-term relationships with their student population after they graduate. The college's previous CRM solution provided limited functionality, making it difficult to create accurate forecasts and reports and to segment and sort contact lists for targeted campaigns. This led to lower ROI on outreach efforts.

Gordon College was named an award-winning institution by Nucleus Research for its success in advancement and alumni relations. Salesforce helped Gordon College get there. Salesforce’s Alum 360 put Gordon College on the road to fundraising success. Alum 360 is designed to increase donations, personalize supporter engagement and accelerate team productivity.

To address these issues, the college conducted an internal business process analysis to determine the functionality it needed in a new Customer Relationship Management solution. After considering Salesforce and Blackbaud Raiser's Edge NXT, Gordon College chose Salesforce in the spring of 2016. The implementation process took place over a period of three months, with the college partnering with a Salesforce implementation partner and completing 16 hours of training for 20 employees. 91% of Salesforce customers use partners to help accelerate their digital transformation.

As a result of the Salesforce deployment, the college saw increased productivity from reduced manual data entry and alumni lookup, and an increase in average dollars pledged to the university. The time savings and increased gift officer productivity enabled the college to significantly increase the volume of work without increasing headcount. The ability to track and monitor proposals and opportunities, coupled with more accurate and up-to-date information, allowed the college to better engage with constituent networks and led to more successful fundraising campaigns, resulting in a 10% yearly increase in gift-giving.

Salesforce provided Gordon College with a 360 degree view of their alumni, the ability to reach targeted populations with the right messaging at the right time, and overall increased productivity. Salesforce Alum 360 increases fundraising productivity, customizes and tracks omnichannel communications, and creates informed fundraising strategies for higher education.

The primary objective of the deployment was to support the college's goals of scaling fundraising and gift-giving opportunities. The deployment was completed on time and within budget, with representatives from Salesforce dedicated to meeting the target completion date. The deployment also reduced downtime and increased data integrity, resulting in improved decision-making and enhanced donor relations. Overall, the deployment of Salesforce has been a success for Gordon College, enabling the college to better manage its fundraising and alumni relations efforts.

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