Case Study: Managing an Affordable Housing Community using Salesforce CRM and the Nonprofit Success Pack


Hilltop is a nonprofit corporation that was established with two goals in mind: to provide affordable housing for individuals aged 62 and older; and to nurture independence through innovative programs that help maintain, enhance and improve the lives of all who live there. 

Residency at Hilltop is open to all qualified, eligible persons 62 years of age or older, without regard to race, color, creed, national origin, handicap status, religion, familial status, political persuasion, sex or sexual preference.  Its 124-unit, equal-opportunity facility provides affordable apartments, many with subsidies provided by HUD or the Seattle Housing Authority.

About The Project

Hilltop reached out to DaizyLogik to help them implement Salesforce CRM with the Nonprofit Success Pack. Prior to the organization’s adoption of Salesforce CRM, Hilltop relied mainly on Excel spreadsheets and paper files to manage business operations, applicants and residents. Since many of the Hilltop residents are recipients of subsidies, the organization needed a more efficient and timely way to track activities while still maintaining compliance with the subsidy requirements for certification purposes. Hilltop also wanted to have a clearer picture of its vendors and contracts as well as keep track of communications with applicants – tracking their journey to becoming residents.

DaizyLogik used an incremental, agile, and transparent approach to build the new system that meets Hilltop’s needs. Since most staff had no prior experience with Salesforce CRM, we made sure that every new piece was built, demonstrated, and then tested and validated by staff who were provided clear testing instructions. 

Resident and Property Management with Salesforce CRMResidentFileImage

To accomplish the goals of this project DaizyLogik leveraged the Salesforce Nonprofit Success Pack (NPSP) and built additional custom structures and processes to model the organization’s business operations. This allows Hilltop to track the whole journey for applicants from the moment they are waitlisted for a unit on the property to officially becoming residents.

Since the entire engagement process is tracked in Salesforce, staff can track a resident’s history with the community, from the moment their application is received, including: emergency contacts, legal notices, and maintenance work orders. Additionally, any interactions with the residents may be recorded by staff, including reportable and actionable exchanges, so that Hilltop staff can perform their duties in a timely and efficient manner.

By consolidating the organization’s data into Salesforce, Hilltop can now efficiently manage waitlisting, move-in and move-out processes. 

Hilltop has fairly complex certification processes they need to follow in order to ensure their qualifying residents can receive subsidies under HUD’s Senior Preservation Rental Assistance Contracts (SPRAC) Program as well as Seattle Housing Authority’s programs. These processes require timely actions throughout the year that were originally very difficult to manage via spreadsheets and email. Within the new Salesforce system DaizyLogik configured, these certifications can now be accurately tracked to ensure no deadline is missed.

In addition, the solution allows the Hilltop team to manage the property through structures that track information about the residential units and common facilities within the building. Maintenance is now immediately notified when a service request is placed so they can address it in a timely manner. 

In order to complete the digital transformation, Hilltop is looking to expand the use of Salesforce to track donors and other constituents, streamline inspections, procurement and marketing efforts. Eliminating data and process silos by using the full power of Salesforce CRM allows Hilltop’s small team to operate more efficiently.

In the words of our client:

We asked Thornton Bowman , Executive Director at Hilltop House to share his thoughts about this project.

DaizyLogik: What prompted your decision to seek out a CRM and what led you to Salesforce and the Nonprofit Cloud (Nonprofit Success Pack)?

Bowman: We had tried an industry specific platform to meet our needs, and over the course of a year we tried to implement it. Unfortunately, only limited modifications could be made. So, while it was industry specific, it was built with a very limited understanding of how anyone in the industry operates. We didn’t fit. I had previously been a Salesforce admin and that experience gave me the idea that solutions should be as malleable as the operations and processes they are meant to support.

DaizyLogik: What is one of the legacy business processes where Hilltop gained the most by moving to Salesforce CRM? 

Bowman: Moving away from spreadsheets and easily being able to report on the information of those old spreadsheets.

DaizyLogik: What is the staff most excited about in using the new system?

Bowman: Better tracking of critical information and workflows that keep that information up to date.

DaizyLogik: What are some areas that should be addressed next in using Salesforce to automate or streamline?

Bowman: Connecting Salesforce with other systems we use – finances for example.  

DaizyLogik: How would your team describe working with DaizyLogik to bring your new Salesforce database to life?

Bowman: DaizyLogik has been a pleasure to work with; and they have been accommodating and understanding in the buildout as we dealt with a pandemic, changing schedules, and turnover in staff. They helped us consider some of our processes differently and came up with solutions to meet our needs that could not be met by the other platforms we previously tried.