For hip, young Jewish professionals living and working in Manhattan, growing and staying connected to Judaism takes more than just Shabbat services and dinners. On the Upper East Side, a neighborhood that is home to some of the world's most wealthy and powerful people, Chabad Young Professionals UES provides a place where they connect with other young Jews and develop their spirit through classes.
Since 2009, Devora & Yosef Wilhelm have run this unique spiritual hub. Together, they put on engaging and inspirational social events, classes, and volunteer opportunities. Young Jews of all different levels of observance come from all across the city to these events. In fact, 70% of contacts are not even in their neighborhood. With 13,000 of them living on the Upper East Side alone, that’s a lot of traffic to sort through and track!
It wasn’t long before Devorah, who runs the administrative parts of this Chabad program, realized her spreadsheets would not be sufficient. “Let’s just say that when you have a lot going on in an organization if you’re base operations aren’t solid and running smoothly, then everything else gets shaky,” she explains. To make the most of the good work they were doing, Devorah needed a CRM to track her contacts and a separate email program to send out regular event updates and announcements.
But the CRM she was using still left a lot to be desired. It had no cloud backups and she had to do every step manually: Event sign-ups, reservations, thank you cards, donations, event confirmations, receipts all had to be done by hand still. Despite above average in her computer skills, Devorah occasionally ran into problems with the software or needed assistance. As she puts it: “No one that opens a Chabad house is doing it because they’re good at computers. It’s just something that you have to do in order to run an organization.” But when she reached out to customer service, they were nowhere to be found. There was a very limited window of time when they would be able to reach them and the service wasn’t very “customer-oriented”.
Frustrated with her experience, she looked for an alternate. What she found was “a complete game-changer.” With Chabad Suite, all of her regular tasks were seamlessly integrated into one app. All those steps she used to do by hand, are now done automatically. She doesn’t even need to leave the app to create her marketing emails - she can do it all right there. And best of all, if she’s ever stuck, Devorah knows she can reach out to Chabad Suite’s Customer Support and get the help she needs. “If there is a general issue I’m having that I know someone can answer, I know I can go to the WhatsApp group, but for specific things, I know that I can reach out to (customer service) and get the help I need.”
With their foundations now firmly in place, Chabad young Professionals UES is thriving. “(Chabad Suite allows us) to put our efforts into what we think is really the most important part of what we’re doing, which is relationship building and giving people Jewish content as opposed to having to spend time sending receipts”, says Devorah. “I’ve recommended Chabad Suite to a lot of Shluchim and they are happy with them too!”