Organizations using HandsOn Connect have access to premier training and support services. The HandsOn Connect help desk is built upon a 'best in class' web-based service which includes:
- Product training in a searchable knowledge base with recorded video instruction on how to use the volunteer recruitment and management technology;
- An online forum-based user community making it easy to interact with and learn best practices from peers, other users, and our support team;
- The ability to subscribe to forums for push delivery via email or RSS on topics of interest;
- A forum for submitting customer service feedback and requests for product enhancements;
- An online ticketing system for client-specific requests that creates personalized, threaded conversations between client and support staff to facilitate working issues through to resolution, including technical support, troubleshooting assistance and other customer service inquiries;
- The ability to share open technical requests and answers with other members of your organization; and
- The ability to receive and respond to support updates via email.
Live Product support by phone can also be arranged, if needed, by appointment.
A comprehensive training program for new adopters of HandsOn Connect begins with pre-deployment client consulting. System users are offered a scheduled orientation session delivered via a web-based conference call, which introduces webinar training basics, the training program overview, how to access client services and technical support, the volunteer user experience, and how to practice creating and managing data.
Online training sessions are then offered in a modular format, detailing how to use each function of the technology through scheduled webinars. Additionally, clients can access supplemental instruction from the training and support staff during regularly maintained office hours which serve as virtual walk-in appointments in our web-based classroom environment.
The training curriculum includes nine training sessions (2 hour duration) with 3 hours of labs on the day following each session. Recordings of the training sessions are also made available on demand in the client services and support website where additional documentation and resources are located.
HandsOn Connect Implementation Timeline
Your involvement starts one month before training begins and then will continue for 2 months after training is complete as you move towards taking your site live.
Here's the timeline and the time commitment involved with going from orientation to live in HandsOn Connect:
- Minimal time commitment.
- One pre-deployment orientation to set the stage, at which time you'll be asked to make some business decisions necessary to prepare your instance of HandsOn Connect for Training.
- Basic Salesforce self-study
This is the month where your staff will need to devote the majority of its time to learning and becoming familiar with HandsOn Connect. Depending on the role each person on the staff has in using the system, each person will need to devote 20 – 40 hours during this month focused on mastering the system, including:
- Nine 2-hour webinars (6 for your entire staff, all 9 for your System Administrator(s).)
- Optional participation in live Q&A 'labs' offered every other day. We will assign 2-3 hours of 'homework' each week to help guide your staff through mastering the use of the system.
- Your System Administrator will coordinate with your staff and begin testing and customizing your site in preparation for going live.
- This will be a time-intensive month, particularly for your System Administrator(s) and anyone involved in the content and publication of your web content.
- The time commitment will vary depending on whether you are using the system with minimum customization, or whether you wish to build a complex website and deeply customize the user experience for your staff, partner organizations and volunteer leaders. Everyone on the staff should be engaged to make business decisions so this work can move forward as quickly as possible.
- You'll also use this month to make decisions on how you will train your partner organizations and volunteer leaders to use the system.
- Early in this month, you'll request a scheduled 'go-live' date based on how long it will take you to prepare your site, staff, partners and volunteer leaders to start using the new system.
- You should plan on involving staff, board and any other trusted stakeholders in TESTING your site before it goes live.
Month 4: (or Month 5 or Month 6) – This may vary based on how much time you need to prepare your site for launch and our capacity to migrate your data and take you live.
- The go live process takes approximately three days to shut down your old technology, migrate your live data to HandsOn Connect, allow you to test data integrity and update website content linked to the new data. We will then redirect DNS per your request to bring your new site live when you are satisfied that everything is in place.
- Plan on devoting the majority of your System Administrator's time during the week you are going live.
- Plan on your staff interacting with the new site, communicating to stakeholders, and adjusting to the new work environment during the week following go-live. You'll have a bit of a learning curve as you start using HandsOn Connect in a production environment but will quickly get up to speed.
- Six of the scheduled two-hour trainings are for your entire staff, and three are for the System Administrator(s) only. Do your best to clear everyone's calendar so that they can attend these important trainings. Recordings of the classes will be available for those with unavoidable scheduling conflicts, however, we cannot guarantee that recordings will always be viewable to all users, due to technical limitations with some PCs to view videos in the provided formats. We STRONGLY recommend that your staff attend the webinars at the time they are scheduled.
- Plan on your team focusing on readying your site to go live as quickly as possible during the month following the last scheduled training. This will require resources from your marketing team to communicate to your stake-holders and between 20-40 hours for your System Administrator and/or web designer to clean your data, customize the site to your needs, and redesign your website to fit the new web design. Time will vary depending on the number of customizations you wish to make.
- We prioritize 'go live' dates for wave customers during the 4 months that follow the completion of training. If you are unable to move forward with going live within that period, go live scheduling will be on an 'as available' basis only.
A wave begins on the day of the Pre-Deployment Orientation and ends during the first month we start taking wave clients live.
September 2012: Orientation
October 2012: Training
November 2012: Prep for going Live
(December 2012 – February 2013): Your "Go Live Window"
December 2012: Orientation
January 2013: Training
February 2013: Prep for going Live
(March 2013 – May 2013): Your "Go Live Window"
March 2013: Orientation
April 2013: Training
May 2013: Prep for going Live
(June 2013 – July 2013): Your "Go Live Window"
June 2013: Orientation
July 2013: Training
August 2013: Prep for going Live
(Sept 2013 – Nov 2013): Your "Go Live Window"
September 2013: Orientation
October 2013: Training
November 2013: Prep for going Live
(December 2013 – February 2014): Your "Go Live Window"
HandsOn Connect will be in a continual state of expansion and development throughout its life cycle.
- Our users have a dedicated 'feature forum' where they can suggest and request changes, expansions, and enhancements to the system.
- Users can 'vote' on how much they like a feature idea so we can focus on the most requested features first.
- Users can comment and discuss feature ideas so that everyone's voice is heard in how new functionality should be implemented and work within the product.
The Salesforce Platform provides quarterly upgrades to its functionality that will enhance the power of HandsOn Connect for all users.
- Recent upgrades to Salesforce include "Chatter" – a 'twitter-like' system that allows threaded conversations and updates social-network style between users on your staff.
- Recent upgrades also include drag-and-drop report construction.
HandsOn Connect users can customize and enhance the application to meet their business needs.
- Outside developers can add functionality to your Salesforce instance
- Easy integration of Salesforce Apps (available at http://sites.force.com/appexchange) to add functionality now:
- Mass mailing / newsletter management
- Integration with Outlook
- Project Management
- Donation Management
- Fund Raising