FormAssembly Empowers Family Promise to Save Time and Achieve Cleaner Data
Case Study Snapshot
Family Promise is a nationally distributed nonprofit organization that works with a network of regional and local affiliates around the country. The goal of these groups is to provide services for families encountering homelessness and to offer a variety of programs, including shelters, stabilization, prevention, and diversion. With a large amount of incoming data and community participation, Family Promise turned to FormAssembly to save time, eliminate paper and manual processes, and gain access to cleaner and more organized data.
Family Promise is a national 501(c)3 nonprofit organization with the goal to end family homelessness. Since its founding 30 years ago, Family Promise has set out to offer a variety of programs to give people experiencing homelessness more support. This includes initiatives to help individuals gain secure housing, develop skills and opportunities, and to prevent homelessness. With a national network, Family Promise mobilizes over 200 affiliates and 200,000+ volunteers to help end poverty and homelessness.
The needModernizing outdated administrative processes
Bridge the gap between incoming data and Salesforce
Originally, the primary reason that Family Promise switched to FormAssembly was because of the unique Salesforce integration. Because their existing Salesforce org was already well-established, staff wanted a reliable way to integrate new data within Salesforce. Before the organization was reliant upon paper mail (in the form of postcards) and Excel spreadsheets to stay up to date with their affiliate network.
To come into alignment with more modern expectations, staff members wanted to collect all of the data they needed in one easy split—which meant cutting out manual forms and reducing the amount of time that staff spent on manual data entry.
...which meant cutting out manual forms and reducing the amount of time that staff spent on manual data entry.
The solutionExpanding resources to accommodate a thriving affiliate network
Save time and eliminate points of friction
Over time, Maggie says that Family Promise has fully expanded the ways that the nonprofit leverages FormAssembly. The underlying current in all of these efforts is to streamline old processes, remove manual data entry, and save valuable time for both affiliates and staff members at the national level.
“FormAssembly has really saved me so much time. Once I dug in and figured it out, it became a lifesaver,” Maggie said.
Additionally, now that Family Promise has upgraded to FormAssembly’s Enterprise Cloud plan, they have more access to time-saving features than ever before. This includes benefits like the Prefill Connector and FormAssembly Workflow, which provide creative options for solving common challenges—like knowing when a form needs to move to the next stage of review or approval.
Other features, like FormAssembly’s field and form calculations, reduce the number of errors or mistakes that are received when respondents fill in or update their data. By defining variables, Maggie can ensure that the information she receives is ready for Salesforce and organized in a way that works best for the organization’s visibility needs.
“FormAssembly has really saved me so much time. Once I dug in and figured it out, it became a lifesaver.“
Affiliate Census Data
To be an affiliate provider, Family Promises requires all affiliates to submit annual data relevant to the work they carry out. This includes information about the number of people served and the number of families who have secured stable housing. As one of the largest sources of data that the organization collects, this is a significant, multi-paged survey that requires plenty of time and effort.
Prior to using FormAssembly, Family Promise relied on a system of paper postcards sent via traditional mail. This led to common challenges, including the fact that the response rate was lower than desired, and data wasn’t always provided in a format that was helpful or usable.
Up-to-Date Contact Lists
An area of focus for Maggie has been improving the vast contact lists that the national organization maintains. This includes basic contact data in addition to more detailed information about each program.
Prior to FormAssembly, staff would send out Excel spreadsheets, with headers and guidance in place, and request contact updates. (In some scenarios, they were even collecting paper business cards!) The drawbacks were that respondents could always adjust or interfere with the spreadsheet itself, leading to lost data and time delays.
With FormAssembly, all that is needed is to send out the link to all affiliates. At the national level, Maggie and her team use relevant data from Salesforce based on what they already have. This alone saves days worth of staff time. Response rates have naturally improved, and Maggie reports that they are no longer constantly behind the curve or trying to keep up.
This year alone, FormAssembly has been particularly helpful as the national branch has started to manage more funds (for example, offering a Tech Innovation Grant to affiliates). Now, leadership can award $1k-$2k in grant money that’s useful for expanding any applicable program.
Having the ability to collect that data back in FormAssembly has been helpful because it’s organized, and efficient, and affiliates can easily access it when they need to. In return, Maggie reports that the national office receives “cleaner data than we have ever had before.”
In the grand scheme of things, Maggie and the Family Promise team benefit from exploring the possibilities with FormAssembly and discovering fun, creative ways to leverage its potential on a daily basis. For example, the organization is managing more event processes with FormAssembly forms. Not only does this help save and reduce costs associated with separate third-party event management and payment platforms, but it also streamlines the communication between the organization and attendees.
Looking ahead, Family Promise also plans to take even greater advantage of FormAssembly Workflow to manage processes like pre-event communication, volunteer sign-ups and awards, and continuous contact list improvements.
The ability to save time and achieve cleaner data allows Family Promise to focus on what really matters—its mission to end and prevent family homelessness.
Learn how FormAssembly can revamp processes at your nonprofit institution to save you time and money, while equipping you to focus on what really matters.