We first obtained NPSP for our development tracking when spreadsheets were no longer working well. We quickly expanded it to our outbound marketing for newsletter tracking and our volunteer program management. That was in the first year. We then expanded it a year later to track our client program delivery. A year later we were tracking client outcomes as well. Now it's simply an integral part of how we operate.
- Scales up
- Not an easy lift right out of the box unless you completely rule out customization
- Not "free to own" even if the grant is free because you'll need about 0.25 FTE to maintain it
- Constantly being updated which is cool but many items are "forced" and you must respond
- Lots and lots of customization are required to equal many canned solutions available for any one particular feature set (but none of them can cover the breadth and flexibility of SF)
If you only want to track donations, I'd go with something simpler. If you want to track donations and programs and connections between them, there may be nothing better. If you have no technical abilities and no budget, restricted yourself solely to what it does as described exactly in the manual. If you can't devote about 0.25FTE to the constant maintenance and upgrades, don't go with it.