Hi everyone, 

We currently use ACCESS databases to manage records for students and volunteers and are researching better ways to do this.

Would anyone mind sharing what tools they use to manage student, volunteer, and donor information? 

For example, do you use LACES for student data and Salesforce for Volunteers and Donors?

Thank you for any input,

 

Michele

ITC for REEP

michele.cona@apsva.us

Comments (9)

David J. Rosen's picture

Michele and others,

This is a great question. Thanks for asking it. I hope we will have lots of responses for you. I am going to cross-post your message to the Program Management CoP, too. Perhaps we'll get a response or two there as well.

David J. Rosen, Moderator

Integrating Technology CoP

djrosen123@gmail.com

 

David J. Rosen's picture

Michele, I see that you have already posted your question in the Program Management CoP. Excellent!

Program Managers and others, I do hope we will have some responses here to Michele's question.

For those who are not familiar with the Literacy, Adult and Community Education System (LACES), it is a proprietary data management tool designed for adult literacy/basic education (including ESOL/ESL) programs. You can learn more about it at  https://literacypro.com/products/laces/

I am also interested in other solutions, other proprietary products suitable for adult basic skills education programs, but also ways in which programs have customized databases to meet their own program's data management and reporting needs. I am wondering, for example, if anyone has taken a generic database like ACCESS and customized it for collecting student learning progress data. If so, please tell us about how you have done that.

David J. Rosen, Moderator

Program Management CoP

djrosen123@gmail.com

David J. Rosen's picture

Michele, I see that you have already posted your question in the Program Management CoP. Excellent!

Program Managers and others, I do hope we will have some responses here to Michele's question.

For those who are not familiar with the Literacy, Adult and Community Education System (LACES), it is a proprietary data management tool designed for adult literacy/basic education (including ESOL/ESL) programs. You can learn more about it at  https://literacypro.com/products/laces/

I am also interested in other solutions, other proprietary products suitable for adult basic skills education programs, but also ways in which programs have customized databases to meet their own program's data management and reporting needs. I am wondering, for example, if anyone has taken a generic database like ACCESS and customized it for collecting student learning progress data. If so, please tell us about how you have done that.

David J. Rosen, Moderator

Program Management CoP

djrosen123@gmail.com

Edward Latham's picture

I have helped a number of organizations set up systems within the Google tools. Much of the set up depends on the data collected and how you wish to report with it. In general, people often like to use Google Forms to collect the data, they set up the processing and reporting of the data within Google Sheets and then I have seen the reports and or graphs shared on Google Sites for the public to access those pieces that an organization wishes to be public or within a closed network. 

Just a thought to add to the discussion. 

 

Josh Anderson's picture

We use Matrix Literacy for our volunteer and learner records.  We have tried LACES first (about 3 years ago) and I would easily recommend Matrix over it.  Because LACES is web-based, it was MUCH harder for us to adjust the use of the program for needs.  If you want to do exactly what LACES expects you to do, it might be fine for you.  Matrix is an Access-based program.

Matrix does have functionality for donor tracking, but we because have a separate dept. that use Little Green Light for donor tracking we don't use that part of Matrix.

David J. Rosen's picture

Thanks Josh. I hadn't heard of Matrix Literacy before.

I wonder if someone has put together a chart comparing software tool features for managing student, volunteer, and/or donor records, ideally a chart that focuses on adult basic skills program needs. Anyone know of such a chart? If not, anyone interested in making one, and sharing it here?

Michele: Do you have a set of criteria for what the ideal software would be able to do in managing student, volunteer and donor data/records? If so, can you share those with us? For example, do you prefer computer-based or web-based? Do you have a preferred price range? Are their particular reports you need it to create, for example for certain (or several) funders? Do you want it to report data on learners' progress for one-year periods, or longer? Do you want it to be a relational database that would allow you compare certain kinds of student demographic data (e.g.age, gender, first language, etc.) with learning progress? Would you prefer one integrated system that collects and reports data on 1) students, 2) tutors, and 3) volunteers or would two or three different tools be okay, especially if they each perfectly met your needs?

Everyone: Do you use (or know of) other (computer-based or web-based) software tools that manage: 1) student, 2) volunteer and/or 3) donor data/records that are suitable for adult basic skills (including literacy, numeracy, ESOL/ESL, and college transition) programs? If so, please share information about these tools with us on the Integrating Technology or Program Management CoP. 

David J. Rosen, Moderator

Integrating Technology, and Program Management CoPs

djrosen123@gmail.com

REEP_ITC's picture

Hi David, et al, 

Thank you for your detailed responses and I look forward to getting more ideas from others out there.

Re: criteria, everything listed is among our needs. Web-based would be best as we've run into issues with trying to work from County sites when data is on the Schools' servers. Deep customization might have to stop at certain price points. 

I hadn't heard of Matrix either and will look into it. Conversations with reps from LACES, Salesforce, and ACEware have been productive. 

thanks!

Michele

Morgan Winston's picture

Hi Michele,

 

We may not have the most efficient system, but we are currently using CiviCRM along with QuickBooks.  CiviCRM is attached to our website and lets us enter all of our contacts, group them by type, and pull reports on their activity.  I use QuickBooks for our accounting.  In it, you can keep track of donors and vendors adding important contact info.  At the end of the year, it's easy to pull reports which show exactly how much someone has donated.

rcole13002's picture

Hi Michele,

We use a cloud-based program called Bloomerang for volunteer and donor management. We use the free version for now but plan to upgrade to the paid version. Here is a link to the pricing: https://bloomerang.co/pricing and be sure to scroll all the way down the page. Here is a link to a video that shows you how to manage your volunteers in Bloomerang: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tX5PapbfhxE and be sure to check out the videos on their YouTube channel to learn more of what you can do with Bloomerang. If you decide to use it to manage the records of your students, please let me know how you are using it.

I hope this is helpful.

Roberta

Kabod House International