Development of a Custom CRM Application for an NPO’s Member Performance Management
The Customer is a non-profit organization that unites more than 10,000 entrepreneurs around the globe and accelerates their growth by supporting knowledge and skill exchange.
According to the organization’s policy, members are grouped in clusters with an assigned leader on top of each. To support the organization-wide performance management program, the Customer required a subsystem for Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011 that would automate analytics and reporting on member performance, including that of cluster leaders. The software was supposed to substitute ineffective tools used before (such as Excel spreadsheets) and allow a higher complexity of the performance management program.
At the pre-development stage, ScienceSoft’s CRM consultants and the Customer reviewed 49 metrics included in the organization’s performance management program. After that, the ScienceSoft team designed a high-level architecture and then got to the development of the performance management subsystem consisting of two modules:
- performance metrics
- performance analytics and reporting
Performance metrics module
In total, all metrics were split into 3 groups:
- performance of cluster leaders
- overall cluster performance
- participation in community activities
Group 1 metrics served to evaluate the performance of cluster leaders against such parameters as membership renewal rates, forum activity (calculate current / new members and moderators), management of mentorship programs and events, etc.
Group 2 metrics were applied to evaluate the level of strategic planning in member clusters, such as setting goals, timely attendance on committee calls, participation in annual meetings, and yearly iteration of the cluster leading board.
Finally, Group 3 metrics described the activity of cluster members concerning the community life and included such aspects as media coverage, participation in inter-cluster programs, and submitting members’ applications for organization-wide awards.
In line with the Customer’s requirements, the performance management metrics in each group were set as either obligatory or optional (to be selected by cluster leaders) for tracking. After calculation, the KPIs were stored in the Customer’s CRM for their staff to view and validate.
Incorporation of the performance metrics module in the Customer’s CRM required changes in the organization’s systems. For example, these were introduced to the CRM to enable collecting of certain data used for KPIs (for example, goals of member clusters, cluster leaders’ attendance to calls, etc.).
Likewise, ScienceSoft’s developers delivered custom CRM plugins to automate sourcing of particular data (for example, to capture the total number of new members per year). For the indicators based on the information manually provided by the organization’s members, ScienceSoft’s SharePoint department fine-tuned the Customer’s extranet (to track activities organized for cluster members and member participation in events, among other tasks).
Performance analytics module
The solution supported two reporting channels:
- in the Customer’s CRM system for the staff
- in the SharePoint extranet for cluster members
The performance analytics module introduced to the Customer’s CRM armed the staff with charts and dashboards (5 types of each) that allowed analyzing the performance of member clusters. The same module could be also used by the Customer to verify reporting metrics since this easily configurable functionality didn’t require updating the .Net code to modify report requirements.
To enable on-portal reporting for members, ScienceSoft delivered dedicated extranet pages and performed an integration between the SharePoint extranet and the Customer’s CRM. Report pages used the same design as the whole extranet to keep brand consistency.
Eventually, the project delivery was followed by a training for the Customer’s staff to ensure a quick adoption of the rolled out performance management subsystem.
In 6 months, ScienceSoft team of 6 experienced CRM and SharePoint developers and testers came up with a two-module CRM subsystem for member performance management. As a result of the project implementation, the Customer got:
- The performance metrics module with 3 groups of both obligatory and optional indicators;
- The performance analytics module that supplies reports for the Customer’s staff via the CRM and for the organization’s members on the SharePoint extranet;
- Necessary changes to enterprise systems (CRM and SharePoint extranet), including fields, custom plugins, and webpages;
- Pre-development consulting and post-development training for the staff.
In the course of the project, the ScienceSoft team suggested and implemented a range of enhancements to the performance management subsystem that helped to optimize the process of data collecting and metrics calculating. The deliverables allowed to automate KPI calculation and data aggregation from the CRM and the extranet, as well as to improve the processes requiring manual data verification by the Customer’s staff (for example, checking membership dues and the percentage of the dues reserved).
Technologies and Tools