Architected .NET middleware application to automate processes for a health foundation to coalesce three different APIs – Survey Monkey, Dynamics CRM, SharePoint.Features
We implemented a CRM integration for a health foundation to provide data visibility across their departments and automate routine workflows. However, the Advocacy department was reluctant to use the CRM and the integration needed “buy in” from them to be successful.
This integration would help other departments but how does it help us? –Advocacy Department
A discovery phase revealed that they did have many manual processes that could be automated with the CRM being a key player.
Advocacy department: Unnecessary time spent distributing, collecting and sharing the results of surveys.
Health foundation: Inability to make business decisions due to limited insight into the Advocacy department’s throughput and user base.
To replace their existing manual data collection methods, we built a custom middleware application that would leverage webhooks in their survey software (Survey Monkey) to monitor for submissions and then populate the results in the CRM. Subsequently it would generate PDF documents and store them in SharePoint with the proper association in the CRM.
I suggested we don’t just build this middleware for this standalone service, but requested for a larger engagement to allow this service to be abstracted to allow any kind of sync with an external system. The Advocacy department’s automation would be the first of many. Our COO was delighted by this suggestion because it meant a larger proposal.
- Hours of manual entry saved due to middleware automating these operations.
- Costs saved on reporting tools since they were replaced with CRM reporting.
- Foundation admin were better positioned to allocate funding and see relationships within the user base once they had the Advocacy departments data.
Some departments were hesitant to join the CRM due to data privacy; we had to carefully impliment policies to ensure all contacts were shared but not all data was visible for each contact.
Ensuring we understood the Advocacy department’s goals and workflows so the CRM brought them benefit otherwise their reluctance would thwart the CTO’s efforts to democratize the foundation’s data. We had to really flex our consulting and onboarding skills to unify all departments to sharing data and using one system.