Microsoft Gold Cloud CRM and Gold Cloud Platform Partner

Let’s face it: The Non-Profit Starter Pack is amazing. Just the Households feature alone makes it indispensable. In fact, I was so enamored with it that I started showing it off during one of our first sessions – and quickly overwhelmed and panicked my audience.

My first order of business was to strip everything possible out of the organization – at least hide it from the user. For the sake of this post, let’s assume that all of the non-System Administrator users have access to everything at the start.

Sandbox Only

Only make these changes in the sandbox for now!


Create a new App with the name of the non-profit. We chose of course “Fishline.” Next, modify the Tab access for this app so that the only tabs available in this new app are Home, Accounts, Contacts and Reports.

Give the Administration profile you previously created rights to this app only and remove rights to all other apps.

Page Layouts

Clone the page layouts for the Organization and Household record types. Assign only these to the profile. Clone a page layout for Contact as well.

Absolutely gut these new page layouts. What do I mean by this? Remove everything except what is essential for identifying the records.

Account: name, address, primary email, phone, primary contact, parent account and number of household members. Turn off the maps. Remove all related lists except for contacts. Any fields you cannot remove should be stuffed into the last section.

Contact: account lookup, name, birthdate, emails, phone numbers, do not call, email opt out and address. Remove all related lists except for relationships.

Too Harsh?

It would not surprise me that many would vehemently disagree with my approach. Let me explain. In my over 20 years of UI design experience, the most common complaint of new users is that the screen was too busy. The Salesforce Classic experience intensifies this because of the two column limitation. This necessitates scrolling which almost always welcomes negative comments.

A fear you may have is that the user may assume that Salesforce is limited in its capabilities, and you would be right – to some extent.

That’s why I carefully control the users’ first few exposures to Salesforce. I actually prefer to use an on-line meeting format instead of giving an in-person tour. The reason for this is that we are not crowded around the same screen and I am free to “work my magic” while they watch.

What is this magic? You are well aware of the fields that are available – they are not. Displaying a minimalist interface will indeed provoke questions and concerns, and this is where it gets fun.

The first question surfaces: “We need a place for the web site … I don’t see it. Does it mean we cannot have one?” Perfect. My response is “just a second …” as I click Edit Layout, drag down the field, click Save, and – your audience is speechless. “Is that where you want it?”, I ask. “Fine, it’s just fine. Wow!”

This is how you sell Salesforce. Remember – they likely have not been exposed to this kind of flexibility. Again – the project’s success depends on enthusiasm and momentum, and that is what we are building.