Thoughts on technology and innovation
Jean-Paul (JP) Guilbault
CEO, Community Brands
It’s hard to believe another year has gone by, and what a year it’s been. A year ago, Community Brands was formed when we brought together association and nonprofit technology leaders Abila, Aptify, NimbleUser and YourMembership. We later added Configio for registration and event management and then 501 Auctions, Gesture and GiveSmart to power our more than 100,000 association, nonprofit and school events.
And as we’ve been working to lift Community Brands with our customers, partners, employees and market, solidifying our value to purpose-driven organizations and evolving into a point solution to provide leading technology for those organizations, we’ve become all about empowering organizations to deliver social good through positive change driven by this technology.
We’ve also taken on meeting the needs and expectations of a digital generation when it comes to cloud and mobile, interoperability of apps and software, machine learning and artificial intelligence, security and blockchain, as well as the expansion of creative and emotional intelligence. All top-of-mind trends and topics organizations are having to answer for as our members, donors, volunteers—everyone—keep up and even drive transformative tech changing our world to make it a better place to live.
All that said, now it’s time to put the rubber to the road. Time for you to get a focused look at how Community Brands is leveling the playing field between for-profits and purpose-driven organizations, and investing in underserved markets and technologies.
Xperience 2018 is less than a month away, and we’re highly anticipating hosting the best and brightest minds in the association and nonprofit sectors May 6 through 9 at the Walt Disney Swan and Dolphin Resort in Orlando, Florida. We’ve been diligently working to create an unforgettable experience that will have you feeling inspired and empowered to reach your full potential as a leader and team member of your organization.
Xperience18 promises to be an unforgettable experience, because, for the first time ever, our customers, partners, consultants, employees from all our brands, as well as leaders from the association and nonprofit markets, are coming together for four days to exchange ideas and innovation. We’ve designed the event as a unique opportunity for association and nonprofit professionals like yourself to be surrounded with like-minded people who are dealing with similar challenges and using similar tools every day.
We are featuring motivational keynotes from Innovation Provocateur Linda Bernardi and Dr. Derreck Kayongo, the CEO of the Center for Civil and Human Rights. There’s the chance to have one-to-one conversations with product leaders to allow you to influence product roadmap decisions and gain a deeper understanding for what is coming and why, as well as learn from industry experts how to efficiently leverage technology to meet growing expectations of your members, donors and other key stakeholders, while improving engagement and delivering value.
Sig VanDamme, Membership Software Evangelist
Associations are making a move from old school, legacy association management software (AMS) systems to modern enterprise platform-based AMS systems on the Salesforce App Cloud. The primary drivers are these:
Performance, scalability and security. The Salesforce platform offers associations a performance envelope unmatched by any other.
Ecosystem and Extensibility. From email marketing to volunteer management, the Salesforce AppExchange offers more than 3,500 applications for associations to advance their mission.
Innovation. Forbes magazine voted Salesforce the most innovative company in the world (ahead of Tesla, Apple and Google). Last year, Salesforce spent $780 million on research and development, and their customers are already leveraging this investment with artificial intelligence (AI) and Internet of Things (oT).
Three Keys to Salesforce Association Management Success
There are three key things associations need to look for to truly harness all of this Salesforce goodness for their organization.
1. Continuous Delivery. Make sure every customer of the AMS you select is on the same version. Nearly every association professional has seen the adverse effects of being left behind with outdated software. Salesforce is automatically upgraded three times a year, and every Salesforce customer is on the same version. Your AMS should do the same. Another advantage is it empowers your AMS provider to focus on supporting only one version, which allows them to have more capacity to innovate.
2. Correct Architecture. Verify your AMS provider uses Person Accounts, the supported Salesforce architecture purpose-built for the use cases professional and trade associations face every day.
3. Financial Stability. Lastly, take a deep-dive into the finances of your AMS provider. Building, delivering and supporting enterprise software is incredibly expensive. Innovation requires a high level of focused, continuous investment into research and development. Look for a firm with revenues starting with a ”B,” not an ”M,” because it takes billions of dollars to move innovation forward. You want your AMS provider to be around five years from now.
An AMS can set you up for success in the future. Learn how in our free ebook. Click here to download “Future Forward AMS.” It will help you get a better return on your software investment.
Matt Rist, Director, Product Delivery
Data privacy and protection are getting increased attention in the software world and the new General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which goes into effect on May 25, 2018, is leading the way. The one overarching principle made clear in the opening sentence of the GDPR is: The protection of personal data is a fundamental right.
Nimble AMS views the GDPR as an important step toward protecting the data rights of individuals and has made it a priority to help associations become compliant. We are building new capabilities that will support associations that need to become compliant, or want to implement data privacy best practices outlined by the GDPR. Your AMS plays an important role in your overall data privacy strategy and associations will be able to take advantage of Nimble AMS in four key areas.
Nimble AMS is committed to helping associations become compliant with the GDPR and implementing data privacy best practices. If you are interested in learning more about how Nimble AMS can help your organization, please reach out and we will help connect you with one of our knowledgable experts.
If you are interested in learning more about the GDPR, here are some helpful resources to guide you on your journey.
- Nimble Query
Nimble Query puts the power of SOQL in the hands of your administrator. Salesforce Object Query Language (SOQL) is a way to search Salesforce data that is more powerful and useful than a simple report. SOQL queries can be used to create Visualforce pages, within Apex statements, and to pull data into Nimble Create templates but they have traditionally been hard to write. Nimble Query gives administrators the ability to create SOQL queries with a simple point-and-click query builder interface. By simplifying the process of creating SOQL queries, your administrator can do more without developer help.
- Payment Gateway Framework
With the Spring '18 release, we further enhance payment processing within Nimble AMS with the inclusion of framework to support additional payment gateways. In the past, the only credit card payment gateway used with Nimble AMS was with Authorize.net. This new framework allows you to create alternative credit card payment gateway integrations to be used instead of the default Authorize.net payment gateway. In the future we plan to add additional credit card payment gateway support using this new payment gateway framework.
Sometimes, it's the attention to details that bring the whole thing together.
Related List Quick Links Throughout Staff View
Your staff will enjoy increased efficiency with the addition of the Related List Quick Links Lightning component on your record pages. With the Related List Quick Links component, staff can view multiple related lists in quick succession just by hovering over a link. And, they can complete actions right from within the hover pane.
New Merchandise Product Detail Experience
Additionally, your administrator can now more richly customize the merchandise product detail experience for your constituents in the Community Hub store. Add more cards and details to each listing to personalize the shopping experience from selection to checkout.
The Nimble AMS Spring ‘18 release adds a powerful new tool in your administrator's toolbox, brings even more staff efficiency and constituent personalization, and paves the way for an easier and more affordable payment gateway experience in the future. To learn more about the features and improvements in the Nimble AMS Spring release, go to help.nimbleams.com.
Matt Rist - Director, Product Delivery
NimbleUser attended Salesforce’s premier conference, Dreamforce, in San Francisco last week. Dreamforce is now considered the worlds largest software conference with over 170,000 attendees and 2,700 sessions! This conference is a great opportunity for us to learn the future direction of Salesforce and how we can harness it to shape our product roadmap to help associations better leverage the power of the Force.com platform.
It was incredible to experience the positive energy around the conference coming from the worlds most innovative company.