This page outlines a roadmap: the goals we are setting for the next few releases of CiviCRM. It is primarily a technical document aimed at those involved with CivICRM development but users may also find it useful in understanding the direction that we are headed. We plan to release a non technical roadmap in the near future.
Each goal contributes to our vision that 'all organisations have access to an amazing CRM to engage their contacts and achieve their missions'. Underneath each goal, we detail what we will do, and why it is important.
The roadmap sets the focus for the core team - it is where we will be concentrating our efforts. At the same time, it is an invitation for our entire community. If you are able to help deliver these goals, we encourage you to join us.
Goal 1: a powerful form designer
Today our users, and those that support them, are able to customize CiviCRM installations with a number of powerful tools, many with point and click interfaces. But there are still some 'flies in the ointment', for example:
- Customizing layouts for some back-office screens (e.g. the contact summary page) requires developer skills and can complicate the upgrade processes.
- Some front-end screens (e.g. online contribution forms and event registration forms) have limited layout and page flow options. Our community spends too much time tweaking these pages to meet their requirements, and maintaining these tweaks through upgrades.
- Building and improving core forms requires developers to learn an antiquated and poorly documented form layer (HTML_QuickForm). This is an obstacle to bringing new developers into the ecosystem.
A new and powerful form designer built with modern tools will make it quicker and easier for users and service providers to customize screens allowing them to work on substantive improvements (for example like improved workflows for specific use cases). It will attract more developers to the project, bringing their skills and experiences and resources to the project. Replacing older varied code with a new consistent set of tools will increase the mantainability of the code and reliablity of the product.
Goal 2: better looking CiviCRM
CiviCRM is amazingly powerful, but we haven't won many beauty contests lately. Our interface has grown in complexity over the years and some amazing functionality is hidden away or hard to work with. To tackle this, we plan to migrate CiviCRM's user interface to Bootstrap - an increasingly popular framework for designing web-based applications. This migration will:
- provide an easy to maintain, consistent look and easier to navigate interface, putting more of CiviCRM's powerful functionality within easy reach of of our users
- give us a 'mobile friendly' interface that allows our users to work with CiviCRM on the devices of their choosing.
- reduce the learning curve for new users by providing anexperience they'll be familiar with from other web applications
Goal 3: Improved API
Both the new form builder and the new user interface improvements will be built with our API at their core. We will be making various improvements to the API - inlcuding adding more business functionality and increased test coverage - to enable this to happen. The API is fast becoming standard-operating-procedure for all developments and we want to ensure that this trend continues.
Today, more than 11,000 organizations use CiviCRM on a daily basis - we want to grow that figure to 100,000 organisations. Key to the growth is increasing the number of people actively participating in our commmunity. The goals you see in this roadmap are designed to contribute to this scaling. We encourage you to get involved. and help us deliver it.