Published
Friday, June 17, 2011 - 06:10
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For the past two days Michael McAndrew and I have been working on a training program for CiviCRM. We haven't finished it, but feel free to take a look at what we've done so far in this Google doc.
We've been working with the material that is already there, on the wiki etc., but have developed that a bit further. So far, we discussed and wrote for a User and Administrator Training. Since neither of us have enough technical background to write a developer training ourselves, we hope to also find input for that to further develop that on a similar basis as this one for users and administrators.

The idea is that we'll continue working on it and will use it as input during the London CiviCRM sprint in August.

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Comments

Here are some thoughts on a segment - only one - of those who are interested in training. This is based on experience with organizations that outsource CiviCRM setup and customization because they don't have tech-savvy internal personnel, and others which have so many staff that the people using CiviCRM for communications, fundraising, events and membership are not in the IT department, and are sometimes not tech-savvy.

For organizations with staff who are struggling with CiviCRM use, I think a course that focuses on practical things like how to quickly do standard tasks, and really make good use of Searches and Reports and actions like emailing to search results is probably more than enough. An essential but advanced topic would be doing duplicate elimination. Specific sessions on using donations, events, membership and case functionality could focus on the standard options, and probably not even review all of the options for, say, Contribution page settings. My own sense is that there is a need for a course that has less overview and customization, and includes nothing on initial configuration.

For example, when training people who will be using CiviMail, I don't think time should be spent on initial setup options. Similarly for CiviContribute with regard to Payment Processor choices. Even for administrator training, I wonder about the benefit of focusing on installation and initial configuration. Maybe there could be a separate 1 day training program on Installation.

Because it is so much a part of deploying a CRM for most organizations, I think it would be good to put a bunch of time into data import in an Installation course.

HTH.

Thanks again for putting so much effort into materials and for sharing them. I'm expecting to do some training in Toronto in late summer and would be interested in contributing back edits on some of this.

Cheers,

I wanted to follow up on the comments you received on the 28th
"This is based on experience with organizations that outsource CiviCRM setup and customization because they don't have tech-savvy internal personnel, and others which have so many staff that the people using CiviCRM for communications, fundraising, events and membership are not in the IT department, and are sometimes not tech-savvy. For organizations with staff who are struggling with CiviCRM use..."

this is truly the situation we are in. Our non profit organization is exactly as described, we had a website developer created a new site for us using Drupal and CiviCRM and we are struggling to use it because of our lack of tech -savviness. We are currently looking for some training for a new staff person that is going to be responsible for managing the site - what are our options?!? we reside in Columbia Maryland.

thanks
Stacie

Stacie - Looks like options for public training classes are "thin" for this summer (unless your staff person can come over the pond to London in late August). That said:

* The two books featured on the front page of CiviCRM.org each provide clear and thorough explanations pretty much from soup to nuts of CiviCRM features (one is free and available online, the other can be purchased from Packt publishing).

* If self-teaching / reading isn't a good fit, I may be able to hook you up with a D.C. based consultant who can organize a paid training session for your staff (and perhaps open it up to other folks in the area who might want to participate as a way to share costs). Ping me - dave at civicrm dot org - if that's of interest.

* Hook up with CiviCRM DC Meetup folks and see about getting a meetup scheduled where you can share and pick peoples' brains :-) http://www.meetup.com/dc-civicrm-meetup/#past

* The community forum can be a great place to ask "how do I accomplish this" type questions.