A Small but Mighty Staff Makes a Big Impact with Salesforce
Take a close look at Baltimore and you’ll see a city that’s pulsing with leaders pioneering new models to tackle some of our most intractable challenges locally and nationally. Baltimore Corps is at the center of this dynamic ecosystem. It invests in leaders and solutions that are turning Baltimore into a new hub of social innovation.
Baltimore Corps’ Fellowship program matches professionals with employers, also known as “Visionary Cause Leaders (VCLs)”, in large and small nonprofits, government agencies and some for-profit businesses that are working to make a difference in the community.
“Poorly organized, hard to track, and not scalable.”
Baltimore Corps received 560 Fellowship applications this past year and 174 employers looking for a Fellow to place at their offices.
As a young organization with a small staff, managing a fast-growing Fellowship program was rife with challenges. A smattering of Google Forms, Excel, and email were difficult to sift through, not to mention accurately tracking and reviewing hundreds of applications and VCL needs. The result? Poor customer service and slow response times.
“We had a lot of information to manage in order to place a Fellow at the appropriate position, with only a staff of 5. I was also managing relationships with employers in my email and it was difficult to understand where a Fellow or employer was in the process and who still needed to be matched,” explains Sarah Flammang, Strategic Partnerships Manager. “Our process was poorly organized, hard to track, and our work was not scalable.”
Creating a Community to Serve the Community
In need of a solution, Baltimore Corps turned to the Nonprofit Success Pack (NPSP) as the unified foundation for its Fellowship program. The program expanded to include Experience Cloud for Nonprofits to recruit, place, and retain equitable talent for the next generation of leaders in Baltimore’s social sector.
All Fellowship applications are now completed through FormAssembly, a third party app which integrates directly with Salesforce. Once an application is submitted, FormAssembly-TaskRay automatically creates a task for staff to review the application. Staff then input ratings on each applicant based a variety of criteria and compile a list of recommended Fellows for an employer to review and choose from.
A process that was previously done using Excel and Google Forms is now much more structured. This has not only led to more staff efficiency, saving one to two hours of review time per application, but also a more fair and consistent and data-driven decision making process of whether a candidate should move on or not.
Employers can also take ownership in the selection process directly. The Health Commissioner of the Baltimore City Health Department for example can log directly into Baltimore Corps’ Salesforce Community and see what talent is available based on recommendations staff has curated based on the Health Department’s needs. Employers know which candidates to focus their time on and can communicate with top applicants directly within Communities. “Employers, who are really in the best positions to understand what their needs are in a Fellow, can now take ownership in the communication and selection process of the applicants that’s the best fit for them,” explains Billy Dally, Systems Design Manager. “This has enabled us to scale our impact without having to scale our staff.”
Staff are also able to get a holistic view into the Fellows they have available and the employers who are still in need. When one employer identifies five applicants they want to interview in the final round, that creates around 100 different interactions. “Managing those relationships would be impossible if it wasn’t for Salesforce,” explains Sarah Flammang, Strategic Partnerships Manager.
“With Salesforce, we are more efficient, effective, and responsive due to being able to see who is in the pipeline, when we last interacted with them and how, and where our gaps are,” explains Sheila McMenamin, Fellow Recruitment Manager. “Most importantly, we can better identify the right fellow who is able to execute and make an impact within the right organization.”
Moving Baltimore Forward
“While we were an effective organization before, Salesforce has allowed us to take our impact to the next level which has enabled us to effectively triple our impact in Baltimore in just two short years.” Billy Daly, Systems Design Manager.
So what does this mean for the work Baltimore Corps does?
Says Liz Gomez, Director of Operations & Administration, “It means that we have created opportunities for our next generation of leadership working in the areas like education, workforce development and public health to make a real difference in the Baltimore Community.
What started as a vision to connect talent to opportunity is now a reality with Salesforce.”