Salesforce Phase I Implementation

> Establish college-wide instance of Salesforce
> Establish training and user support model
> Design and implement "Partner and alumni engagement" solution for DMBA
> Design and implement "Event management" solution for DMBA and Career Development Office
> Design and implement "Student internship tracking" solution for Career Development Office
> Design "Student case management" solution for student advising services
> Deliver report on Phase I outcomes and proposed next steps
Project Summary: 

This project involves the first phase of implementation of Salesforce CRM for use in an academic program (DMBA), in Student Affairs (Academic Advising, ISAP and Access & Wellness Services), and in a combined partnership between the Career Development Office and academic programs for student internship tracking).

The general purpose of a Salesforce implementation will be to:

  • Facilitate storage, sharing and analysis of constituent data (e.g. students, industry partners, guest lecturers, alumni)
  • Improve efficiency and effectiveness of business processes related to management of this data
  • Facilitate and track communication and engagement with constituents
  • Establish business rules regarding data access across divisions

This first phase will be considered a pilot, in that expansion of Salesforce to other campus units, programs and functions will be considered based on the outcomes of this first phase. As part of this project, measures will be established that will be used to evaluate the potential benefit of Salesforce as a campus-wide CRM solution.

Project Timeline: 
project gantt chart
Business Case: 

California College of the Arts (CCA) currently provides few technical tools to support administrative and academic departments in the management and tracking of their engagement with students, alumni and industry and community partners. To form lasting relationships with these constituents, a college must understand and engage in a manner that incorporates:

  • Collection of data on the contact’s interactions across administrative, student life, community engagement, advancement and academic programs.
  • Communicating in an effective and timely way with the targeted constituents.
  • Sharing of pertinent data across departments regarding the information garnered from those interactions within incorporated permissions based on institutional roles and within FERPA and other regulatory guidelines.

Unfortunately, most of these interactions are not captured at all, or not captured in such a way that makes the information visible to the right people at the right time. Even when data is collected, it may be in a proprietary format, or restricted to departments that each have their own way of storing, processing, and analyzing the data. This siloed data creates a lack of collaboration, because despite the best of intentions, different departments cannot work together due to their separate systems or data formats. The results of this can have a detrimental affect on the student experience, retention, and engagement with alumni and community partners. It also creates many operational inefficiencies and opportunities for human error.

Project Scope: 

This project will primarily involve working with the DMBA (MBA in Design Strategy) program, Career Development Office and Student Affairs Advising services (Academic, ISAP, Access & Wellness and Career Development) to implement Salesforce as a solution to critical CRM business processes.

Business Process Solutions

The following business processes have been targeted for Salesforce Phase I implementation. A more detailed explanation of each business process follows.

Campus Unit Business Processes
DMBA Program
  • Partner engagement management
  • Alumni tracking
  • Event management
Anticipated external relations groups
  • Partner engagement management
Career Development (Student Affairs)
  • Student internship tracking
Advising (Student Affairs)
  • Student advising engagement management

A general description of each business process follows, however part of this deliverable is an in-depth analysis of the current business processes prior to system implementation. The analysis aims to not only define and document business requirements and processes, but to identify areas for improvement in the processes, both in practice as well as in the context of a Salesforce implementation.

  • MBA in Design Strategy program (DMBA)
    • Tracking of alumni in regards to contact information, jobs, CCA interactions and other career-related outcomes and activities.
    • Tracking of industry contacts with which the program engages: faculty, guest speakers, industry partners, event attendees, mentors. Database of contact information and interactions with these contacts.
    • Event management for student, alumni and community events, including email marketing, invitation and response management.
  • Anticipated external relations groups
    • Tracking of industry contacts with which various units on campus engages; database of contact information and interactions with these contacts.
    • These groups have not yet been identified, but several potential business units have presented themselves as good candidates for this aspect of constituent management. Specific partners will be identified as the project progress.
  • Career Development Office (CDO)
    • Tracking of student internships. This refers to both active internships as they are identified, as well as completed internships. The data collected includes (but is not limited to) student information, employer information, learning objectives, outcomes, student evaluation, employer evaluation and comments by the faculty internship advisors.
    • Much of this data is collected and entered by the program manager, program chair or faculty internship advisor within each academic program. This project will include identification and incorporation of the appropriate staff and faculty within the academic departments into Salesforce. Incorporation of each program will likely be phased, beginning with the design programs for which internships are required.
  • Student Affairs Advising Services
    • Includes Academic Advising, International Student Affairs and Programs (ISAP), Access & Wellness Services and Career Development
    • Advisor notes, which includes tracking student interactions and advisor notes, the access to which is tightly controlled to protect student privacy. Advisors need to make notes that by default are only shared with other advisors.
    • As necessary, advisors need to be able to share notes with faculty, specific departments or services to which they are referring this student.
    • Facilitated engagement with students, included automated and/or templated email communications with students
    • Capture engagement with students, including emails sent/received from various departments to student, student's attendance at various events, etc.

Implementation Consultant

The project will include partnering with a Salesforce implementation consultant to configure and customize of the platform to best meet the business process needs outlined above. This project will include selecting an implementation partner, defining the scope of work and implementation plan, negotiating and awarding a contract, and management of vendor services throughout the work period.

System Integrations

Some likely system integration points have been identified for this project, and more may exist that have not yet been identified. Scoping and analysis of these integrations will be incorporated as part of the Implementation Consultant work, in coordination with the Associate CIO for Infrastructure and Technology Support Services, Cian Phillips, and Director of Academic Information Systems, Mindy Jasperson. Below is a preliminary list of integration points to be explored and further evaluated:

  • Single-sign on for Salesforce users, with the concurrent Identity Management Upgrade project currently underway.
  • Colleague integration: as some of the functions defined in this phase include reference to a student record (e.g. internship tracking, advising notes), integration with the campus student information system (Colleague) will be included to create and update student-related records between Colleague and Salesforce.
  • The “Student Engagement Record” (i.e. the Salesforce record of our engagement with a student) requirements will likely warrant synchronization of FERPA-protected data from the SIS. As such, all necessary approvals from the Students Records Office will be obtained as part of this process.

Third Party Tool Integration

Based on the implementation plan that will be developed with the Implementation Partner, some third party tools may be licensed and integrated within our Salesforce implementation. Some of the tools that may be warranted include:

  • Email and social media marketing solution (e.g. ExactTarget)
  • Event management (e.g. Cvent)
  • Appointment scheduling (Student Affairs currently using Schedule Once)
  • Google Apps

These third party tools may involve additional licensing fees. Budgeting for the recommended tools will be assessed as the need/solution is identified.

Phase I Evaluation

Finally, this project includes an evaluation of the effectiveness of Salesforce as a solution for the campus CRM needs. Specific measurements will be established by the project team and evaluated throughout the project.

One of the areas of concern is sharing of Salesforce data with the Advancement Office, which already uses a CRM (Razor’s Edge). It is to the advantage of both advancement and the academic programs to have a comprehensive, shared view of CCA’s engagements with industry partners and alumni. A strategy for meeting this need will be explored during the Phase I evaluation.

A report will be produced that will outline the outcomes of the phase I implementation and proposed next steps.

Project Sponsor: 
Mara Hancock, CIO, VP Technology
George Sedano, VP Student Affairs
Melanie Corn, Provost
Project Manager/Lead: 
Michelle Ziegmann
Functional Leads: 
Kayoko Wakamatsu, AVP of Student Affairs
Susan Worthman, DMBA Program
Kate Dey, Senior Director, Career Development
Key Stakeholders: 
Suzanne Raffeld, Acess & Wellness Services
Nathan Shedroff, DMBA Program
Cian Phillips, Infrastructure and Technology Support Services
Noelle Hylton, Administrative Information Systems
Jerry Allen, Student Records Office
Karen Weber, Advancement
Chris Bliss, Communications