SalesForce (Spring13) Non-Profit Start Pack cheat sheet

This guide is intended as a cheat sheet for rapid reference, not comprehensive learning.

The following objects are modified, or new to orgs with the NPSP installed:

Contacts and Organizations:

  • NPSP establishes two models of auto-linking between a contact or an organization and the relevant account.
    •  A catch-all Account that is the default for all contacts without a defined account. (This is called the Bucket)
    • A slightly modified contact creation / editing screen to force a proper 1:1 link to an account.
  • You can switch back and forth between these models, but there is of course migration work.
  • A contact can be excerpted from Either model — Can be disassociated from any account — by marking it as private. 
  • Automatic primary Opportunity Contact roles – i.e.: if you give an Opp a valid contact Id, that contact id will generate a Opp Contact Role Automatically.
  • Automatic 1:1 Account on Opp when Contact Id is Supplied — i.e.: if you give an Opp a valid client id, the account id is automatically populated from the account on the contact.
  • Automatic Contact Role on Opp when 1:1 Account Id is supplied — i.e.: if there’s only one contact on an account when that account id is specified on the Opp, the Opp will auto populate the Contact Id

Households (New Custom Obj)

  • Households are essentially a collection of contacts living at the same physical address. Useful for say physical mailing control. i.e.: only send one flyer!
  • This just in, Households are also used for soft credits. Think of a soft credit as a way of sharing credit for a donation with your spouse or family. I give $100 to the local PuppyHelp Non-profit, in the name of Mr. and Ms. CodeFriar. The CodeFriar household is credited with that donation. 

Recurring Donations (New Custom Obj)

  • There are two key pick lists on this object:
  • Installment period
  • Schedule type

These two pick lists setup how the donations are created. (Note, Donations == Opp). The idea is when you create a recurring donation, the object will create N number of Opp’s with X spaced Closed dates. 

Relationships (New Custom Obj — but mostly a Related List)

  • While this is an entire obj, it is mostly exposed via a related list on contact, and a few additional fields.
  • Also includes reports. (show me all the children of single moms…)
  • Goal is pretty simple, establish familial or organizational relationships amongst contacts. (spouse, child, etc.)


  • This is essentially a bolt on for “nice to know” information. 
  • Used to associate a contact with an organization where the organization is NOT the non-profit. 
  • ie: if you want to establish an organization say, First United Methodist, but you the non-profit are UMC of NC. Then you would use an affiliation to associate John and Jane Doe with First UMC. It’s Nice to know they go to FUMC, but not critical.

Here’s the Entity Relationship Diagram:

Salesforce provides a nice (but nerdy) ERD for the NPSP. If ERD’s are your thing this will help:


Additional Resources:

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *