Part 1: The Good - Upgrading to Salesforce NPSP 3.0 - KELL Partners
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Part 1: The Good – Upgrading to Salesforce NPSP 3.0

Are you ready for’s Nonprofit Starter Pack (NPSP) 3.0 Upgrade Month? Almost without exception, anyone who is running the NPSP 2.0 packages should consider upgrading to NPSP 3.0. Once you’re up and running on NPSP 3.0, you can optionally convert to the new Household Account model. This 2-part series will help you identify whether you are ready to convert, or whether you may need additional time or resources.

To be clear, has designed the NPSP 3.0 upgrade installation and conversion with a small nonprofit in mind. Many nonprofits with a reasonably experienced Administrator can install NPSP 3.0 on their own and convert to the new Household Account Model, should they wish. In Part 1 of this series, we’ll help you identify whether your organization’s data is in good shape to make a relatively easy conversion. In Part 2, we’ll cover the more complex scenarios, where you may need to do some significant preparation or even call in outside help in order to convert.


Part One – The Good

When NPSP 3.0 was released in 2014 we wrote about all the great reasons to upgrade. Since then things have only gotten better as has released tons of brand-new features such as grant management, campaign member management for opportunities and email acknowledgments, to name just a few. And once you’re up and running, any new updates will be pushed automatically to your organization.

First Things First – Are you a skilled administrator with time to dedicate to this project?

Converting to the Household Account model is a lot like painting a hundred-year old house. Sure, it only took a couple days to get the beautiful final coat of paint on the exterior. But it took weeks of scraping old paint, caulking, and priming to prepare for that beautiful coat of paint. And then after you’ve painted, you still need to paint the trim, and touch up a few rough spots.

Similarly, while running the NPSP 3.0 conversion utility may only take a couple hours, it is actually the smallest part of converting to the Household Account model. If you are an administrator, you will need to set aside plenty of uninterrupted time to get your data in shape, and then set up and test the process in a sandbox. Once you are satisfied that your data will convert correctly, and you understand the process, you will need another block of time to do the whole process in production.

And like a good housepainter, a skilled Administrator can make it all look easy. If you are that person, you’ll need strong admin skills such as creating and analyzing reports, manipulating data, adjusting profiles, layouts, and record types.

Converting to the Household Account Model

The NPSP 3.0 Household Account model offers a more straightforward data model than either of the previous models (One-to-One or Individual Bucket Account models), greatly simplifying reporting and analytics. In addition, some NPSP 3.0 features such as Address Management and the NPSP Data Import Template are only available in the Household Account model.

There are plenty of great resources out there on exactly how to upgrade, including:

Can You Upgrade to NPSP 3.0 On Your Own?

If your data is clean and straightforward, and you are a reasonably skilled administrator with time to dedicate to the project, you can convert to the Household Account model using the conversion tool provided by following the step-by-step instructions. But all conversions are not alike. Here we break it down to the good, the bad, and the ugly.

The Good – Convertible Data Formats

The NPSP 3.0 Converter is designed to work when your data is in a very specific format and if your data aligns to the formats below, you should be in good shape. Here are the six data formats you’ll need in place to properly use the NPSP 3.0 Converter:

1. Every Contact has a Household

The NPSP 3.0 Converter will create a new Household account for each existing NPSP 2.0 Household. Each contact with a household will be disconnected from their existing one-to-one, individual bucket, or organization account and moved to this new Household account.

New affiliations will be created for any contacts that are removed from an organization, and a primary affiliation to that organization will be set.

2. Every Opportunity on a one-to-one or individual bucket account has one and only one primary contact role

The NPSP 3.0 Converter will move opportunities from their old one-to-one account or individual bucket accounts to their new Household account of the primary contact role. But each opportunity needs to have a primary contact role so the converter can identify the correct contact account. Note that any opportunities without a primary contact role will be left on the old one-to-one or individual bucket account, and will need to be manually re-parented.

How to check if your Opportunities are setup correctly:

Step 1: Check that all your one-to-one individual or individual bucket account opportunities have Opportunity Contact Roles.

  • Create a new report with report type “Opportunities.”
  • Add a cross-filter as shown in the screen shot below to find any one-to-one individual or individual bucket opportunities that are missing the opportunity contact role.

One to One Opportunities

Step 2: Check that all your Opportunities have one and only one Primary Contact Role.

  • Create a new summary report with report type = “Opportunities with Contact Roles.”
  • Add a filter to limit your results to individual opportunities as shown below.
  • Summarize by Opportunity ID.
  • Add the “Primary” column for the Primary Contact Role.
  • Click the arrow next to the column header, and then summarize this field (choose “sum”.)
  • When you click “Sort in Ascending Order” you should find any opportunities that are missing a primary contact role at the top.
  • When you click “Sort in Descending Order” you should find any opportunities that have more than one primary contact role.
  • If you have a lot of opportunities, and your report returns too many results, you may need to restrict the dates and work backwards.

You will need to correct these opportunities prior to converting.

One to One Opportunies Sorted

3. You have minimal or no customization on Households

If all the fields on the Household object were installed by the NPSP 2.0 managed packages, you’re in luck! Fields with the envelope icon to the left of the field name (as shown in #2 in the screenshot below) will be automatically recreated on the Household Account during conversion, and all the data moved to this new field. Any custom fields on Household (fields without the managed package envelope icon next to them under Household in setup as shown in #1 in the screenshot below) will need to be recreated on the Household Account, and then you will need to migrate the data after conversion. The fewer custom fields you have, the easier the job.

Household Customizations

4.You have minimal or no customization on One-to-One Accounts

Any data in custom fields on the One-to-One account will need to be evaluated, and possibly migrated to Contacts. It can take some investigation to figure out whether you have custom data on your One-to-One accounts. Start by checking how many custom fields you have setup on the Account object. As in the example above, you can identify custom fields because they do not have the envelope icon to the left of the field name in Setup. Once you’ve found any custom fields, narrow down how many of your One-to-One Accounts have data in these fields using a report or data tool such as Apsona. If you don’t have any custom data specific to one-to-one accounts, you are good to go!

5.You have relatively few or no workflow rules, custom triggers, templates or reports on Household

These will need to be pointed to the new Household Account after conversion. The fewer you have, the easier they will be to reset. Take an inventory so you know what to expect. You may need to check with your developer if you have a custom trigger and you’re not sure exactly what it does.

6.You have corrected everything in the NPSP 3.0 Health Check

Once you install NPSP 3.0, you’ll have access to Health Check, a great tool that you can run regularly to keep your data clean. It will help you identify any other issues you may need to address before conversion.

Health Check

In Conclusion

If this doesn’t seem too daunting, you are probably a good candidate to convert your organization to the Household Account model. If not, see part 2 of our series on the bad and the ugly.