CFA’s Cyclone Integration Allows them

to Unleash the Power of Salesforce

Commercial Finance Association


The Commercial Finance Association (CFA) is the international trade group representing the asset-based lending and factoring industry offering publications, discussions, networking, education, forums, and foundations for members.

The Challenge:

CFA uses netFORUM as its Association Management System (AMS), but uses Salesforce as a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) and sales opportunity tracking tool.  Everyone from the CEO to magazine staff uses the tool. Staff needed accurate CRM data for Individuals, Organizations, Membership, and Invoices in Salesforce for sponsorships, ad placements, membership data, and relationship management and growth, but they found keeping it up-to-date was a time-consuming process.

  • Multi-step checks were necessary before starting a data import.
  • Data upload and syncing was a manual process requiring steps outlined in a 10 page SOP.
  • Individual staff was responsible for uploading and syncing data quickly and accurately.
  • Each of the four reports run through Salesforce were run individually up to daily.
  • Staff was often looking at out-of-date data in Salesforce, making it difficult for them to do their jobs.

The Solution:

Gravitate Solutions (formerly Old Town IT) developed a solution called Cyclone that integrates Salesforce with netFORUM and allows data in the netFORUM SQL Server to be published to Salesforce in real-time. CFA saved time and money by quickly automating a manual, monotonous export/import task.

  • netFORUM was established as the system of record. An automatic one way sync from netFORUM to Salesforce eliminated the need for Salesforce updates.
  • Because it is an automatic process, no one has to go through the arduous and complex manual process (with 10 pages of SOPs!) to sync data.
  • Additional fields for syncing can be added in as little as a few minutes, the change impact is now minimal.
  • Cyclone includes health monitoring so CFA has early detection on internet or network issues.
  • Cyclone integrated common data, eliminating the need to run individual reports.
  • The integration provided real-time integration, meaning that staff were always looking at up–to-the-minute data.

The Salesforce integration was revolutionary. Updates are quick and it’s allowing us to unleash the power of Salesforce. It opens the door to a whole suite of world-class programs that would be expensive or impossible to integrate into our AMS. Also, now that we have our basic data within Salesforce, we can build apps that support our business process in an hour or less.

Tim A.

Commercial Finance Association

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