Innovative Ideas Series

Think outside the box with CiviCRM: Innovative idea #12

Stop Managing Contacts with Multiple Memberships Manually

CiviCRM was not specifically programed to handle multiple memberships for the same contact. For example, if a contact with multiple memberships renews online, CiviCRM will renew the original (oldest) membership record and will disregard any other memberships. As a result, organizations that allow multiple memberships have pushed the responsibility of membership renewal to their staff/volunteers, and this responsibility can become a very costly part of the membership management workflow.

Think outside the box with CiviCRM: Innovative idea #11

Empower your internal teams with activities

You've been working with CiviCRM for a while and have come to realize what an invaluable tool it has become to manage your membership and donor base, but you might still be struggling with communication and task assignment with your team of volunteers and you've been wondering how to streamline internal assignments. Did you know that CiviCRM can be used to manage internal workflow and processes using Activities?

Think outside the box with CiviCRM: Innovative idea #10

Let your event registrants choose their participant role and automate communication based on their choice

An organization hosts events that can be attended either in person or via teleconference. During the registration process, the registrant chooses the preferred method of attendance. The event manager then needs to send different emails to the participants based on how they will attend the event in order to provide the necessary information such as parking instructions or a link to the teleconference.

Think outside the box with CiviCRM: Innovative idea #9

How can an event participant keep the relationship with his/her primary member?

Has this happened to you? When an individual registers for an event the relationship with his current employer becomes disabled and is replaced by another employer contact with a similar name!

If so: You should know that this is a typical situation for membership based organizations (ie. trade, alumni, etc.) who hold events.

Think outside the box with CiviCRM: Innovative idea #8

Use checksum token to update an event registration by someone else than the registrant

Let's say that you are organizing an event where registrants must ask a sponsor to support their application in order to get it accepted and become a participant. But how can you collect the sponsor’s feedback and still link it to the applicant?

One of our customers reached out to us for assistance with the configuration of their conference where students were required to provide the recommendation of a teacher to sponsor their application to a multi-day conference. Until now, they were collecting the data on different contacts:

  • the student registration is recorded with the student contact
  • the teacher’s recommendation is recorded with the teacher contact

but the only way to link a student with his/her teacher’s recommendation is to compile the two different lists of contacts.

We suggested a different approach which would allow collecting the teacher’s comments directly with the student contact record. This would be possible with the use of the checksum token.


Think outside the box with CiviCRM: Innovative idea #7

Allow registration status for "Not attending"

An organization holds regular committee meetings using CiviEvent to track the participants. To make sure the committee members register in advance so that meeting plans can be made accordingly, the organization sends several reminders prior to the event. 

But some members would like to be able to express their intention to not attend the event so they don't receive reminders for the event anymore.

Think outside the box with CiviCRM: Innovative idea #6

Donation levels can assign voting rights

You might consider CiviMember to be simply a tool that allows people to join and/or sponsor your organization, but it can actually be used in many different ways. We talked previously about using membership tools to track sponsors helping kids go to school. Here is another clever way memberships can be used:

This organization collects donations from individuals to finance local projects. Donors can donate individually or as part of a group and their donation contributes to the group's overal donation. Every time a donor (individual or group) donates a certain amount, they are awarded a voting right to help decide which projects will be funded at the end of the year. In other words, someone who donates multiple times the voting threshold over the course of a year will receive as many voting rights! 

Think outside the box with CiviCRM: Innovative idea #5

One registration. One payment. Multiple events!

What would you say if we told you that CiviCRM can be configured to manage multi-day or multi-event registrations and payments for a single contact? It's true! Here's how we configured CiviCRM to manage an organization annual fundraiser by creating a way for their members to register for multiple events during a single-day event. But you might be thinking that, as far as you know, CiviCRM only allows participants to register and pay for one event at a time. So how did they do it?

Think outside the box with CiviCRM: Innovative idea #4

Use “Campaigns” to manage trade missions

Most people use CiviCampaign as a tool to manage fundraising or advocacy campaigns because CiviCampaign is one of the transversal components of CiviCRM that allows you to link together events, activities, mailings and contributions under one umbrella in order to track progress toward a goal. So if you think outside the box, there are other uses for CiviCampaign and some are more business oriented. This post describes how an international trade association uses CiviCampaign to manage trade missions.