For more than two decades, Salesforce has been transforming the digital landscape and building a virtual environment that helps all business types — regardless of size, product or service — to better serve their stakeholders and build stronger relationships within their communities. In many ways this goes beyond a typical customer relationship management (CRM) system, as there are mechanisms in place to create a broad scope of customized user experiences and build transformational integrations that yield a highly personalized product.
Building relationships is critical when it comes to cultivating a community of Pencils of Promise (PoP) supporters, developing long lasting partnerships and bringing everyone along for every step of the journey. More importantly, PoP’s approach to advancing education equity in Ghana, Guatemala and Laos is deeply rooted in the importance of building trustful and sustainable relationships with community members. Country Directors and team managers at PoP are leading the organization in identifying and maintaining these relationships through consistent communication and meaningful support that helps improve education systems at the ground level.
The importance of relationship building and maintenance at PoP, both in terms of programming and philanthropy, highlights the need for a reliable and robust system to track and store all forms of data that creates the best experience possible for all stakeholders. That is where Salesforce comes in.
This year marks the 10 year anniversary of PoP’s commitment to utilizing Salesforce as a platform to advance the organization’s data ecosystem, scale our impact around the world and consistently discover ways to push boundaries with innovative and sustainable solutions. PoP has been able to build a network of nearly 100,00 constituents over the years and due to the help of accessible products, such as the Non-Profit Success Pack (NPSP) and Chatter. PoP has also created advanced and customized solutions that support in tracking all programmatic initiatives.
PoP’s Impact App in Salesforce enables teams in Ghana, Guatemala, Laos and United States to remain connected on all facets of the organization’s portfolio. For example, when PoP team members travel to communities to conduct a needs assessment to determine fit for program delivery, data are gathered offline on digital forms and then information is synced with Salesforce once the device is back on a network connection. This upload initiates a customized workflow that leads to the creation of various information pages (i.e., records) that links all data associated with individual communities (e.g., classroom builds or Teacher Support). Figure 1 provides an example of what a PoP team member sees when viewing a community page.
The web of connectivity that exists within the PoP Impact App brings all components together. Beginning at the community level, the application enables the organization to create a database that offers detailed insight into the potential impact for upcoming projects and provides an invaluable resource for maintaining historical data collected over the years.
Access to data contributes to self-actualization at the personal, organizational and community levels. As the global collective evolves and becomes more interconnected, information reaches a broader network and it is critical that highly valid and reliable information be used as a north star. Salesforce is an industry leader in promoting trusted data systems that aid individuals and organizations in becoming the best version of themselves. As a customer, PoP has discovered various uses in the platform that enable better service provision for teachers and school leaders in Ghana, Guatemala and Laos. This is thanks to an ability to create customized solutions tailored to the needs of each community. As PoP’s programs continue to scale, the established partnership with Salesforce will form deeper roots and yield industry leading innovations in the decades to come. Knowledge building is society’s true equalizer and the intersection of data and education has never been more important.