Hyphen8 has been privileged to work with many funders designing and implementing their Salesforce grant management solutions. One of the most common challenges that we hear about for both the funder and the grant recipient is grant reporting.
Salesforce comes with out of the box sophisticated automation tools that allow system administrators to set up and manage their own workflow and automation. This blog focuses on the role automation plays to save a huge amount of time previously spent on requesting and chasing reports. Time that can be better spent analysing impact or having more conversations.
How can automation help grant reporting?
- Auto-creation of the default grant report schedule associated with a specific funding programme – so for example, for smaller grants, you can specify a single end of grant report and for multi-year larger grants you can specify annual reports related to payment release
- Time-triggered automatic sending of requests for grant reports – these can be driven by the due date on the report requirement so if the date gets extended, the timing communications will adjust
- Automated sending of reminders if reports have not yet been submitted – these can be based on both status and date and have different email content if relevant
- Instant notifications to Grant Managers to inform them when reports have been submitted
- Dynamic filtered reports and charts to display real-time information such as overdue reports or beneficiary data that can easily be downloaded or exported for inclusion in stakeholder updates
Funder case study - Halifax Foundation for Northern Ireland
A great example of how automation has saved a grant management team a huge amount of time is Halifax Foundation for Northern Ireland. Their small team previously spent a lot of time tracking which grant reports had been submitted and compiling data. Now that their entire grant management process is on Salesforce, thanks to automation, there have been significant time savings.
- Team members can maintain the settings that control the automation of the requirements for the interim grant report and the final grant report so if elements change, they don’t need to rely on an external party
- An automated process has been configured using Salesforce native process builder (image below) to send out the email to request the grant report 30 days before the due date
- The email contains a link to the grant reporting form that is automatically pre-filled with the organisation details. It also contains the unique ID to associate the responses to the correct grant requirement
- Statuses are automatically updated to indicate whether the report has been requested or received
- When a grant is approved, the status change triggers the creation of the grant report requirements so that the due date is based on the approval date