Here's a preview of a paper I'm working on with Salesforce.com.
Hopefully it'll soon be written up as a customer success story but just wanted to share it here first.
The Code Engages Salesforce.com in Global Fight for the Protection of Children
Violence against children happens everywhere, in every country and across all social groups. Sexual exploitation of children has links to the travel and tourism industry,
specifically the prostitution of children and child sex tourism.
The Code is an industry-driven initiative to provide tourism businesses with the tools, knowledge, and support they need to prevent the sexual exploitation of children. An internationally recognized tool, supported by the UNWTO and UNICEF, The Code has received numerous awards for its innovative approach towards responsible, sustainable tourism and CSR.
- 1,200+ member organizations have joined The Code but with no technology solution in place to monitor and manage member’s accounts, the task of supporting them to implement was becoming unmanageable.
- No system was in place for reporting, invoicing and payments, everything had to be done manually, often resulting in errors and payment queries.
- Administrative tasks were all paper based and process could take up to 2 – 3 weeks to process.
- Salesforce.com Sales Cloud integrates with the The Code.org website to deliver end-to-end member management. A “join now” button on the homepage replaces previous offline application procedure on paper-based forms.
- Add-on application bill.ON sourced from the Salesforce AppExchange revolutionises repeat billing.
- Verticalresponse email and contact distribution services provide real time insights into who is subscribing and unsubscribing to newsletters allowing for tailored content and a more targeted approach.
- Partner Portal licenses are set to provide increased communication and deeper visibility into regional support partners of The Code. For the first time, our member database is shared globally, encouraging greater collaboration between partners.
- Chatter is a convenient way for employees to communicate and collaborate internally and grow excitement around new members.
- A laborious 10-page application process taking 2-3 weeks is now a simple two minute task. Over 15 new companies joined The Code in the first month of the new application process going online.
- 1,200+ paper invoices replaced by an accurate and efficient online payment system – agents are no longer chasing payments into the next year. Members are very pleased to have additional payment options such as PayPal and Credit Cards.
- The information that members are recording on cases of child sex tourism in their local area is providing invaluable information that The Code is analysing and passing on to the relevant authorities.
- Members have access to online training and up-to-date information. Any changes to member information can be added to Salesforce.com by any member of staff within The Code for display to any other user immediately.
- Mobile devices provide a golden opportunity to conduct on-the-spot iPad signups at conferences. We are working to ensure that our signup process is mobile-accessible by the end of 2013.
The Code promotes responsible tourism through a “code of conduct for the protection of children from sexual exploitation in travel and tourism” with a mission to provide tools and support to the industry to combat this crime against children. Through The Code, the travel and tourism businesses voluntarily register as members, committing to implement these six criteria:
- To establish a policy and procedures against sexual exploitation of children;
- To train employees in children’s rights, the prevention of sexual exploitation and how to report suspected cases;
- To include a clause in contracts throughout the value chain stating a common repudiation and zero tolerance policy of sexual exploitation of children;
- To provide information to travellers on children’s rights, the prevention of sexual exploitation of children and how to report suspected cases;
- To support, collaborate and engage stakeholders in the prevention of sexual exploitation of children;
- To report annually on their implementation of Code related activities.
Created over fifteen years ago with one staff to coordinate, The Code has steadily grown its member base through word of mouth. However, as memberships have increased so too has the difficulty of managing them and upholding the steps, “The danger is that companies will sign The Code in good faith but require additional support to properly implement the program,” says Iain Clements, Technology Consultant for The Code. “Without a system in place to monitor each member’s progress on implementing the six steps we would not be able to see which members need our support”.
From Pens to Clicks
Today with more than twelve hundred members, The Code remains lean – just three full-time staff in its Bangkok head office and 40 regionally dispersed local representatives across 45 countries. However, tracking member activity is a whole new story owing to a recent transition to cloud based systems. The not-for-profit has re-engineered its entire member management process around its website with salesforce.com as the engine.
The result is a far cry from the Excel spreadsheets and Word lists of early days. Now, The Code knows exactly who its members are, and where they are in their implementation of the steps. “It’s completely transparent. We celebrate our champions at the top of our webpage as an example to all other members,” says Clements. “Any updated information we receive from our members is added to the system immediately and can be shared across our network instantly. That is a huge step forward from where we were just one year ago”.
Engaging members now happens through a “join now” button on the home page of The Code.org, turning a ten-page application that once took two weeks to complete into a two-minute task. Clements describes this as “nothing short of a revolution, which triggered an immediate upward trend in new members.”
Automatically integrating member data captured online with customer records in Salesforce delivers accurate statistics for member management, reporting, and growth, fueling the global effort. Mobile adds yet another dimension, providing an opportunity to conduct on-the-spot iPad signups at conferences.
Taking the Pain out of Invoicing
With the signup process simplified, The Code has also turned its attention to renewals and member support; “If recruitment was a headache, renewal invoicing could be described as a full blown migraine,” says Clements.
Pre-Salesforce, it took one person two to three weeks to generate annual paper membership fee invoices for the 1,200 members – chasing payments sometimes extending into the following year. The system was fraught with inaccuracy and frustrated both The Code team and their members.
Now in Salesforce, the chances of non-payment or missing an invoice are virtually non-existent. Add-on AppExchange application bill.ON makes easy work of recurring billing, delivering online payment by PayPal, bank transfer, and credit card. This simple step forward is nonetheless significant for the small team at The Code, which is redirecting countless admin hours into researching trends and raising awareness.
“Our new project in Myanmar is a great example of what we can do when we free up staff hours,” says Andreas Astrup, General Manager of The Code. “Our Project Manager, who was previously occupied with chasing payments, is currently working on a new child sex tourism awareness project in Myanmar instead. This is a golden opportunity to educate local tourism professionals about the prevention of child abuse before mass tourism arrives there.”
Measured Growth via Analytics
Salesforce Dashboards surface valuable member information in easy-to-view charts for steering growth. Regional statistics feed Google Adwords campaigns and support decisions on where to commit advertising dollars. The campaign object in Salesforce helps with monitoring Google spend, keeping it safely below membership income.
Moreover, the latest initiative is a Partner Portal for sharing information with partner NGOs in countries where The Code does not have a physical presence of its own. Aligning central records with partners’ local records is persistently problematic. “The Partner Portal will ramp up our support for remote regions significantly,” says Clements. “Our local partners can now see exactly the same information about the members that we have, and can add any additional local information that is relevant onto the record. This helps us give a joined up support experience to the member”.
With this cloud transformation, The Code has moved from a position of “running just to keep up” with the existing member base to being unafraid to open the door to new markets. A recent coup is the influx of new memberships from countries not yet targeted – proof that word of mouth travels faster in the cloud!
|Meet the team|
Be a responsible tourism brand. Join The Code.