When I started my first ever pro bono in Dec 2019 for Frontier Services (an agency of the Uniting Church in Australia), I just had to solve Web-to-Lead to capture correct details of Volunteers & Farmers from a WordPress based website. At that time, I didn’t imagine this would lead to a whole Customer Community implementation for Frontier Services.
After solving the web-to-lead and understanding business processes in Jan 2020, my immediate recommendation was to consider the Community for Volunteers and here it gives me immense pleasure to share that last week (25/04/2020), community for Frontier Services has gone live. So what started as a small assignment changed into a full blown project which I am really proud of.
Community URL: Outback Link Community
Before jumping on the problem statement, let me share some facts about Frontier Services. Frontier Services is a not-for-profit organisation which is helping the farmers in need by providing the right skilled volunteers. The back office team is using the Salesforce Nonprofit Cloud to manage farmers/volunteers and supporting donations.
There were two major processes that needed improvement.
- Frontier Service was capturing New & Returning farmers’ registration via a Google Form available on the website which lead to manual process for their internal team to process that google form data and create/update Account & Contact Farmer and a new campaign to provide supporting help via available volunteers.
- Volunteers of Frontier Services don’t have any visibility of Open Volunteer Jobs which they can sign up for. Also, volunteers don’t have a mechanism to view or log hours against allocated jobs. Hence in the absence of these capabilities, there are a lot of manual processes involved for the back office to support volunteers.
To resolve the first problem of google form integration & manual data processing issues, google forms were replaced with a new farmer registration form on the Customer Community to capture Farmer’s interest. This form was saving data directly on Salesforce in a custom object.
Now to avoid whole manual processing from Custom Object to Account / Contact / Campaign, a Screen Flow has been created with a list of the questionnaire to find matching Account / Contacts or create new records. Matching Accounts/ Contacts were presented in a well-formatted data table Using DataTable Flow Screen Component from unofficialsf.com using all configuration which can be managed by admins.
With this automation, processing of the whole form is done in less than a minute comparing to 30 mins of google form processing and all manual user data processing errors.
The second part of the problem was resolved using Customer Community for the Volunteers which provides below capabilities:
- Volunteers can view available Volunteer Jobs from Salesforce as it’s all built on a single platform,
- Volunteers are able to log in on the community and sign up for the jobs which get reviewed and approved by the internal team.
- After approval, Volunteers can log hours on the jobs.
- Volunteers contact information is up to date and in control of Volunteers.
Frontier Services team is overwhelmed with the Salesforce platform capabilities & have a single platform to manage both Farmer’s and Volunteer’s relationships.
Here is the feedback from the team about the above implementation and engagement.
“As a charity organisation that supports people living in remote Australia, we often find ourselves time-poor and resources stretched to capacity. It was in one of these moments that I reached out to Salesforce to engage in their pro-bono program for some help. My hope was to find an expert in Salesforce, with development skills to help our organisation get the best out of our system. I did not expect to find Gourav Sood! What an incredible surprise. Throughout our project (where Gourav worked tirelessly over 140 hours) my colleagues and I could not stop pinching ourselves. Gourav’s knowledge of Salesforce, his ability to digest our confused ramblings and his wizard-like automation skills were exactly what we needed. I felt that we were in safe hands, and that Gourav was along for the ride with us in our mission to stand with people in remote Australia. We are now in a position where we can spend more time helping people, and less time doing admin” - Clare Bou-Nasr - Database Administrator @ Frontier Services
”As we say here at Frontier Services, ‘we are simply custodians of the role we play here, and our goal is to always leave it better than when we found it.’ And with your incredible support, your expertise, your thorough and detail orientated nature, your solution orientated mind, your great sense of humour and your positive attitude, we have most certainly done that. In spades! And the only beneficiaries of all your hard work, are the people in the bush who are the sole reason that Frontier Services’ has existed for over a hundred years. Through the 140 hours of your time you have so generously donated to us, you have made a massive difference in the capability we now have going forward to be able to stand with more people in the bush that need our help. And now more than ever before.” - Michelle McLeod - National Programs Manager @ Frontier Services
”We walked the wider team through the Community and they loved it, they think you’ve done an awesome job, so thank you!” - Clare Bou-Nasr - Database Administrator @ Frontier Services
- Packaging the Lightning Community of Volunteers as a Mobile App using Mobile Publisher
- Knowledge Management for Internal, Farmers and Volunteers on Community
- Farmer’s ability to publish jobs on Community
- Create a single community for Farmer’s and Volunteers where Farmer’s can submit jobs and Volunteers can get recommendations based on their skills
A heartfelt thanks to the amazing team from Frontier Services (Jannine, Clare and Michelle) for the wonderful opportunity. It was my first ever pro bono and I thoroughly enjoyed working on it. Appreciate the work you are doing helping people and this thought makes me proud of devoting my time on the pro bono. It has been an amazing journey to work with you all. I have grown as a person, both professionally and personally. Thank you for helping me be a part of community services.