When we think about the fight against cancer most of us probably think of cutting-edge research and clinical trials. Perhaps we think of running or cycling with Team in Training, or of someone close to us who fought a battle with cancer and won.
What we probably don’t think of are dashboards, financial reports, and donor records. And yet, it’s these things that enable effective organizations to garner and leverage resources to fund the cutting-edge research, advocate for advanced clinical trials, and organize running and cycling events.
Jerome Wi is a master of understanding how NetSuite’s cloud-based technologies can streamline a back-office. As a Senior Pre-Sales Solution Consultant, Wi is the go-to-guy to help our sales teams customize a solution for each customer based on that customer’s goals and unique needs.
Last quarter, Wi put those skills to use during a SuiteVolunteer Pro Bono project for BRCA Foundation, a nonprofit founded by NetSuite’s co-founder, Chairman of the Board and CTO Evan Goldberg to fund research for the prevention of “BRCA cancers,” or cancers believed to be caused by “broken” BRCA genes.
Wi, and a team of Netsuite employees were matched with BRCA Foundation based on their professional experience and personal interests, and the needs of the organization, which was interested in utilizing NetSuite’s CRM functionality to keep track of contacts, donations and key interactions with donors.
The project that Wi and fellow NetSuite employees took on was one of 40 pro bono projects completed in the first quarter of 2016. More than 120 employees participated in the program during that quarter, serving a total of 39 nonprofits and social enterprises around the globe.
Wi says the team selected to partner with BRCA Foundation was a nice mix of NetSuite employees with product knowledge and account management expertise. He also says the team had chemistry from the beginning, which he credits to each employee’s passion for the cause and a commitment to seeing the grantee succeed. Wi, an avid SuiteVolunteer, was also pumped to see that his entire team, aside from himself, were first-time volunteers.
Gail Fisher, Deputy Director of BRCA Foundation, who managed the project for BRCA, felt that the team allowed her to experience the range of expertise among the volunteers – each one with different strengths.
Wi and team worked with Fisher, who came into the project with a specific plan for how she wanted to use the system.
“Gail came to the group with an idea, and we helped frame it from a NetSuite perspective -- what NetSuite is capable of, what can come right out of the box,” said Wi.
By the end of the project, Wi and his fellow volunteers had successfully enabled BRCA Foundation to track key donor interactions and more efficiently manage and report on donations.
According to Fisher, the experience of having to set up the [donor] database would have been “profoundly different and more difficult without the knowledge and expertise offered by the team.”
When asked what makes a successful SuiteVolunteers project, Wi says transparency, goals, and process are key. In the end though, it’s most important to enjoy the process, take the pressure off, and make the success of the organization you’re helping a priority.
Since its founding in 2013, NetSuite employees have volunteered more than 11,400 hours and completed more than 320 pro bono volunteer projects on behalf of nonprofits and social enterprises around the world. The next application period for the SuiteVolunteers pro bono program is open now. For more information on the program or how to apply, visit: http://www.netsuite.org/pro-bono1.