Worked with CiviCRM as core team developer for more than 2 years. Now we are working as a team and providing service with CiviCRM installation, customization and training. One thing about CiviCRM community is that it's very healthy and really helpful. It's really great that i am part of this community and we want to grow this more and more . Also whatever the problems we are facing there is a solution on forums, or we will get the proper guidelines to solve the issues. Big salute to the CiviCRMcommunity :)
Germany has a large number of Nonprofit-Organisations. So far, most of them (have to) rely on commercial CRM-Software. We would like to provide an alternative by consulting organisations on deploying and using CiviCRM in an efficient way.
CiviCRM is a powerful and flexible tool for providing relationship data management and insight. Equally useful is the active user community that not only encourages contribution, but empowers it as well.
CiviCRM provides a vital tool whereby nonprofits and other social projects can implement strong contact-relationship management capabilities without high monthly fees. It also provides the integration and customization capabilities necessary to make such software useful in the complex, lived reality of doing social engagement work. Plus it continues to build the open source toolset made available to the Commons and grow the common good.
The community provides excellent forum support, new ideas and feedback on suggestions. The CiviCRM software suits many use cases and allows us to support a large number of diverse UK voluntary sector organisations.
We feel there are too many obstacles facing not-for-profits (NFPs) considering commercial CRM offerings, including many of those that are charity oriented. From licensing models which restrict the fluid expansion of an organisation's user base (why should you be punished with higher costs for being successful?), to support from commercial companies being inherently tied to one supplier; a NFP would benefit from the option to 'shop around' for those most appropriate, e.g. based on: proximity and availability on-site, cost, experience, value added services... They also often lack the capacity for charity relevant workflows, necessitating either customisations, complicated and inefficient workarounds or an en-masse call for new functionality, as individual charities do not appear to carry the weight required to influence subtle NFP-only changes to market leading software, without large expense.
On the flip side, CiviCRM is completely free and open-source, carrying with it a friendly, hard-working and enthusiastic community of developers and implementers, constantly listening to the users' needs and sculpting future releases to the requirements of NFP organisations. This is exciting!
At the Wikimedia Foundation, we leverage CiviCRM to maintain millions of records of donors and their contributions. Working with the product and particularly with the community has been a terrific experience. There's nothing quite like two open source organizations working together to meet their respective goals while ultimately strengthening the open source community as a whole.
Being part of the CiviCRM community is really something to shout about! Not only is CiviCRM an amazing software package, its designed for organisations that make a difference in the world. We help non-profits across the UK gain control of their data through the power of CiviCRM.
It is without a doubt the best piece of software I've ever worked with, and I'm constantly discovering cool new features. More recently I've been working on CiviMobile as part of a project for my course at University. I'm really looking forward to seeing this being used by organisations across the globe.
<Cross posted from Advomatic.com The code blocks will be easier to read there.>
Sometimes after launching a new site our clients find that there are fields and features in CiviCRM that they don't use. We are working with a client that wants to remove all fields and features that aren't useful in order to simplify their user interface and make it easier to use. This includes things like SMS features, email signatures, and demographics. There are also several fields that they wanted renamed to be more consistent with the legacy system that they migrated from. To fulfill this requirement I used a combination of template overrides, and CiviCRM's translation system.
First up I should point out that if you do want to go down this path you need to make clear to the client that this will take a fair amount of effort up front (hopefully less for you now that you are reading this recipe). Additionally, if/when you upgrade CiviCRM these customizations will need to be reviewed at the very least, and possibly even re-done to some extent. So while this customization will make things more usable for CiviCRM administrators, it will add cost to both the initial site build, and to ongoing maintenance.
By definition CiviCRM is used by many organizations in the political sphere. For those organizations working in the US one useful metric to have on your contacts is their congressional district. Up until now this has usually been accomplished with either custom code, or exporting your contacts, sending them through a bulk lookup tool, and re-importing them. There is now an easier way to get this with the CiviCRM Sunlight Congressional District module.