Raikes Foundation Moves to Salesforce and foundationConnect

“We love foundationConnect. We can manage budgets and grantmaking pipelines much more effectively than with other tools. The reporting options are amazing and we also appreciate the ability to customize and adjust as things change internally.”

– Kori Dunaway, Grants Administrator at the Raikes Foundation

About Raikes Foundation

Founded in 2002 by Jeff and Tricia Raikes, the Raikes Foundation partners with innovative organizations and creative thinkers who are making lasting, positive changes in the lives of young people. With a vision to enable a just and inclusive society where all young people have the support they need to achieve their full potential, the foundation invests in youth-serving institutions and systems to make them more effective in supporting and empowering all young people, especially those who have been most marginalized. Focus areas of the foundation include education, youth homelessness, and expanded learning opportunities. It operates based on the following values:

  • Equity;
  • The power of young people;
  • Systematic change;
  • Collaboration and partnership;
  • Diversity of knowledge and expertise;
  • Learning;

Background

For the Raikes Foundation, sophisticated tools for budget management and reporting play a big part in managing its strategy portfolios. In the early days, the foundation used a customized SharePoint portal. While this gave the team the ability to do basic document retention and some reporting in Excel spreadsheets, the functionality was too limited to meet the foundation’s needs.

In an effort to improve reporting as well as the overall grants management processes, the Raikes Foundation transitioned to MicroEdge GIFTS Online. Following this transition, grants staff streamlined the grants lifecycle; however, it remained challenging to improve their internal flow and processes across the organization. In addition to grants management needs, the foundation also realized that its technological needs were much broader than only grants management, and that a single piece of technology was needed to accommodate a variety of business processes, such as contact management, event management, budget reporting, forecasting and more.

Solutions

The Raikes Foundation explored several cloud-based solutions. When the foundation discovered Salesforce – and, through fellow foundations, foundationConnect – it was clear that the power of a CRM with a grants management platform, along with a few other niche applications, could fulfill the foundation’s needs.

The foundation worked with one of foundationConnect’s implementation partners to migrate from MicroEdge GIFTS Online to Salesforce and foundationConnect. Being on a platform with a niche application like foundationConnect has allowed the foundation to streamline processes throughout the organization, including the grants pipeline, program management, finance and budget management, contact management, and reporting.

Reports are no longer manually generated and manipulated, but generated through customized and dynamic system reports built within foundationConnect, making it easily accessible for staff at a click of a button. The new system also limited redundancies in data entry and improved the accuracy of data through a more integrated system.

Staff was also determined to reduce paper waste. Moving to the cloud has empowered staff with the ability to rely on technology instead of paper files and gives the staff team the right level of information at their fingertips.

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