26 August, 2011
By DaveD
Filed under CiviCase, CiviCRM, Sprints

We had a good discussion that came up because we were discussing a change being made to lower the barriers that currently exist for evaluators of CiviCase. We thought it would be good to write down some things:

  • Regardless of where the data is stored, everybody wants a way to edit it through the admin pages.
  • Files are useful because existing tools can be used to handle revisions, more easily manage staging and production differences, multiple items can be edited quickly, and configuration settings can easily be shared.
  • Files can be a problem because you don't always have write access on the server, although this can be managed.


In terms of where we are now and where we could realistically get to by the end of the sprint, the options were:

  • Remove the duplicated info that's in the database (case types, activity types, etc) and have the files be the sole source of configuration.
  • Something...
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09 August, 2011
Filed under CiviCase, Sprints

Given that there's an upcoming code sprint in the UK where rumor has it there will be some work done to improve CiviCase, I thought I would put my wishlist out there and get the community's response.  I'm a pretty frequent and detailed user of CiviCase, and although the majority of our actual service delivery is interactive, either on the phone or in person, we send and receive a lot of email correspondence, some of which ends up being relevant to one or more cases.  So one category of improvements I'd like to see involve the email processor and its functions.


I wish the email processor would:

  • allow me to select multiple activities at once to be filed on a case (perhaps with a checkbox interface similar to what appears in a contact search);
  • allow me to delete activities that have been attached automatically to a contact, sometimes by mistake;
  • allow me to see a reference in a user's activity stream after...
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07 June, 2011

I have been leveraging the CiviCase component of CiviCRM to help a crisis response organization transition to a paperless process.  I was originally tasked with "fixing" a Microsoft implementation of a custom web application written in VBScript and MS SQL Server but after fighting with the former developers horrible code I finally decided to migrate the system over to an open source LAMP implementation leveraging J! 1.5 and CiviCRM 3.1.


My client is a leading provider of crisis psychiatric care and system management services to public and private entities.  In addition they are a non-profit that manages mental health outreach and psychiatric recovery services (www.thesantegroup.org).    Some of the services they provide include:


- Crisis Response Services

- Hotline telephone support for individuals and family members in crisis, mental...

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11 May, 2011

CiviCRM is a really nice product for the developer in me because it allows you to create the exact solution as requested by a customer. I have been learning the ins and outs of the system the best I can over the past three weeks so when my customer requested the ability to click a button on the main navigation to see pending and active cases I figured it would be easy.

My plan was to simply create a search, using the Find Cases search that had active users selected and then copy and past the URL, using that for the new navigation link. This is an example of such a link. http://example.com/civicrm/case/search?_qf_Search_display=true&qfKey=df0...
I was thwarted by the session key which makes the link unusable for somebody else. Obviously, this was not the best solution. After messing around with a few ideas for a while I figured...

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25 April, 2011

Eli Beckerman is the second winner of a copy of Using CiviCRM from Packt Publishing. Eli is excited about the potential of CiviCRM to organize bottom-up transformations to deal collaboratively with the many crises facing the world today.

Packt has also selected a runner-up in its contest: an experienced CiviCRM user from the City Bible Forum, ken, will get a downloadable eBook copy of the book.

Here's some background on Using CiviCRM from Packt's site:

What you will learn from this book:

  • Create a successful CiviCRM implementation project
  • Install and configure CiviCRM in Joomla! or Drupal, understand advanced configuration options, and review the upgrade process in detail
  • Get...
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19 April, 2011

Sheila Burkett is the first winner of a copy of Using CiviCRM from Packt Publishing. Packt is running a promotional contest where you just have to post into the forum or email them to qualify to win a copy of the book.

Here's some more information about the book from the Press Release:

Using CiviCRM is the first commercially published book on CiviCRM, and came out in February 2011. It will teach readers to build a CRM that conforms to their needs and to integrate it with Drupal or Joomla!. Written by...

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21 February, 2011
Filed under CiviCase, CiviCRM, Extensions

Many non-profits live and die by the grant money that they are able to bring in. CiviCRM can currently track incoming grant applications through CiviGrant, but there is no way to track outgoing grants applications.

This functionality has been requested by users of CiviGrant in the past, but the project never moved forward. The organization that I work with is very interested in tracking our grant application workflow, which in turn makes me very interested in implementing this functionality.

After some discussion in the forums, it was suggested that I write up a blog post with a few ideas on how to go ahead with the project. Essentially, I see three options:

  1. Extend CiviGrant by adding DB fields.
  2. Extend CiviGrant by leveraging activities.
  3. Replace CiviGrant with a CiviCase workflow.

Before moving ahead, I would like to...

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09 December, 2010

De Goede Woning is the first Dutch housing corporation to start using CiviCRM, and they are in the middle of their implementation process, expecting to go live in March 2011. One of their main loves in CiviCRM is the functionality of CiviCase, which they will use quite extensively for the following processes:


  • manage the process of selling a house, including steps like talking to the bank, valuation of the house, technical survey etc.
  • manage situations where customers are late paying rent and will be followed during a pay back agreement or in the worst cases, legal proceedings
  • manage social contacts for all kinds of problems with customers in their environment (alcohol, abuse, noise, committed client that support neighborhood project etc)
  • manage the process of renting out commercial property


Let me work out one example in a little more detail: some customers have a record of problematic...

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06 December, 2010
By michal

We've been recently working on CiviCRM upgrade for a Front Line - an organisation, which have been using CiviCRM for quite a few years now. Through their sponsorship, we put first version of case management into CiviCRM, which - with time and support from other organisations - led to developing CiviCase component. They also inspired creation of CiviGrant. You can say it's an Open Source success story - they invested some resources into bringing the subject (case work) to CiviCRM, the idea caught up and now they are migrating to much more advanced and flexible solution, which was created within the open source product framework. This blog post is not about calculating ROI, so I'll skip going further into this, but I bet it would be an interesting thing to dig a but further on. This blog post is about using CiviCRM in human rights organisation.

To give you an idea...

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24 October, 2010
A few months ago as our organization was just starting to use CiviCRM, Dave Greenberg recommended that we look at CiviCase as a solution for our admissions team to keep track of prospective students. As a collection of activities associated with a client, CiviCase looked like a great way to record our interactions with potential students as we made initial contact, followed up, received communication from them, sent more info, and then accepted their applications. From a DB point of view, yes, it is a nearly perfect way to store that information. But from a UI point of view, we had a long way to go before our admissions team would be able to painlessly get the data in, work with and update it once it was there, and then be able to get it back out in the form of reports. Here's what we did to make that happen (and more!):

Getting the Data In

Creating a case for a new prospective student is simple: just log in to... Read more