Making it Easier for Blackbaud Customers to Extend Our Software
With dedicated and enthusiastic customers using developer tools to adapt Blackbaud’s software to their organization’s specific needs, we continue to expand our programming to support this community. Customers who leverage these resources report gains in process efficiency, program delivery effectiveness, and knowledge sharing by extending their software using our developer tools and Blackbaud Marketplace solutions.
Blackbaud is proud to share a few ways we’re supporting the developer community in the coming months with new events and resources.
UPCOMING DEVELOPER EVENTS
TEK Talks Webinar Series —Microsoft Power Platform Skills for Blackbaud Solutions
Our TEK Talks series covers technology, engagement, and knowledge sharing, bringing in industry experts to discuss the latest trends in the social impact space. One technology revolutionizing access to automation and app development is the Microsoft Power Platform. To help educate our next wave of power users in this technology, we’ll host a free Power Platform webinar series throughout February and March.
We’ll have sessions for beginners to advanced users:
- Automate Your Organization with Microsoft Power Platform: A beginner’s overview to the world of possibilities that opens when we pair Power Platform with Blackbaud solutions. [Recording available.]
- How to Build a Microsoft Power Platform App in Thirty Minutes: This how-to skills training shows attendees how to build a donor service automation add-in for Blackbaud Raiser’s Edge NXT®. Wednesday, March 1 at 11 a.m. ET.
- How to Govern and Scale Apps on Microsoft Power Platform: Guidelines and best practices for IT administrators and low-code developers to manage and scale their organization’s use of Power Platform. Tuesday, March 14 at 11 a.m. ET.
Microsoft Power Platform Regional Workshops
Blackbaud and Microsoft experts will host a series of regional, in-person workshops to teach the basics of low-code app development in a hands-on setting. Attendees will learn Power Platform by doing; we’ll teach how to create a Donor Service Request automated application for Blackbaud Raiser’s Edge NXT using Microsoft Power Platform. The first workshop will take place in Arlington, VA on April 6 and the second in Chicago on May 16.
Registration is now open for Blackbaud’s virtual developer’s conference, bbdevdays, happening June 6-8, 2023. This conference brings together a community of pro-code and low-code developers passionate about building solutions that extend Blackbaud software. The event will include three days of virtual learning, code sharing and networking, complete with Blackbaud product announcements, product expert sessions, trainings, skills labs and more.
Keynote speakers will spark big picture conversations about the current state and direction of the high-tech industry to help social impact customers frame future plans. Speakers include:
- Day One: Torie Bosch, Opinion editor for STAT, a health and medical journal of the Boston Globe Media Partners, and former editor of Future Tense, a collaborative project of Slate magazine, New America and Arizona State University that explores the implications of new technologies for our current and future world
- Day Two: Somi Arian, tech philosopher, filmmaker, author, entrepreneur, speaker and “transition architect” for a new era of human evolution as we merge with technology
- Day Three: Paul Taylor, IBM Fellow and Chief Technical Officer, IBM AI Readiness
In addition, Innovation Grants will be back at bbdevdays and bigger than ever. Through this program, Blackbaud provides development assistance to customers who have contributed substantially to the developer community and who have innovative ideas that advance the skills and work efforts of their peers.
Thousands of Blackbaud customers have begun using Microsoft Power Platform to personalize and extend their use of Blackbaud solutions. Due to popular demand, we have launched user groups for Blackbaud customers who wish to learn more and share their work:
To help low-coders develop the skills to use Microsoft Power Platform and to drive faster innovation across the sector, Blackbaud has produced a growing number of workflow templates for Power Automate that can be used as-is, or as a baseline for more complex workflows. Blackbaud Community members can also submit helpful code samples in our community template showcase that can be picked up and used by other customers.
Adaptive Cards and Blackbaud SKY Add-ins™
Blackbaud also provides low-code tools for deploying applications inside of our core solutions that allow our customers to support hyper-specific reporting needs and adapt features to unique business rules. Admins can insert Power BI Dashboards, trigger Power Automate Workflows, run Power Apps, and utilize recently released Adaptive Cards—an open-source, light-weight UI extension tool for low-coders.
PUTTING LOW-CODE INTO CONTEXT
Preble Street, a nonprofit in Maine that responds to crises of homelessness, housing scarcity, hunger and poverty, is one organization that has leveraged the extensibility of Raiser’s Edge NXT. By using Certified Connectors to the Microsoft Power Platform to build automations that make workflows hyper-specific to Preble Street’s needs, the organization can scale fundraising and grant funding that enables their life-changing programs and services.
Preble Street adopted 20 automated processes within two-and-a-half years through the Microsoft Power Platform connectors, two of which saved their team up to 10 hours a week on gift reporting and documentation. “I can’t tell you how happy I am that I took the time to engage with the Blackbaud Community and with the learning,” said Nicole Holt, a data systems project manager at Preble Street who had no previous coding experience. “It gave me the space to think about things in a different way.”
In the coming months, look for more announcements about Blackbaud University courses on extensibility and new bbdevdays pre-conference workshops at bbcon for customers looking to get started with low-code tools.