Salesforce’s Educational Data Model (“EDA”) is an innovative and flexible architecture that gives educational institutions from K-12 to higher education a way to capture a 360-degree view of their students. With EDA, institutions can easily view the relationships that students have with faculty, staff, academic advisors, family members, and even memberships with academic departments and student organizations. It’s truly an innovative data architecture built on the Salesforce platform designed to facilitate a Connected Campus.
Working in the Higher Ed space, or any B2C O2I* organization, can present the Salesforce Administrator with a headache: how to manage the Account of the Contact record, when the Contact is as important, if not more important, than Account.
Sure, Accounts are important – we want to know about the schools we recruit students from, the companies where they end up working, the foundations who contribute to alumni relations and the partner organizations we work with. But we don’t want the Account to dictate how we deal with the Contact. Salesforce, however, mandates that all Contacts are associated to an Account.
What are the traditional Salesforce configuration options for a Higher Ed?
- Person Accounts: A ‘standard’ Salesforce function which rewrites the data model, turning the Account record into a ‘Contact’.
- Administrative Accounts: Create an Account for every Contact record.
- Household Accounts: Create an Account for the Contact, their spouse, parents, siblings, as required.
- Bucket Accounts: Lump all the Contacts into a single account.