These days, it’s hard enough to recruit parents to give up some of their ever-dwindling free time and join the local parent organization, boosters club, boy/girl scouts, or any other parent-led community organization. But getting them to sign on the dotted line isn’t the hardest part – the hardest part comes when you’re trying to coordinate schedules, gather funds, and complete paperwork on time while also planning events for the organization and managing your personal day-to-day activities. With varying degrees of availability and engagement within your group, these challenges can lead to a “why bother” attitude – but it doesn’t have to be that way!
Here are four web-based tools that are simple to use, and promote a streamlined, accessible, and transparent approach to productivity.
With Google Docs, everyone in your organization can see, share, and edit documents – from presentations to spreadsheets – on the cloud. The sharing settings are also easy to adjust, giving you the ability to limit who can edit or see specific documents. Additionally, Google Docs features an auto-save function, which means you never need to worry about losing a document or revision.
Of course, Google Docs also allows each user to have their own set of private documents, allowing users to keep their own notes and files in one centralized, ever-accessible place.
Watch This Space: We’ll be doing a separate post on how the Google Apps suite can benefit your organization!
When all the members of your organization aren’t in the same place more than a couple of times a month, it can be difficult to get the appropriate paperwork/contracts signed in a timely manner. That’s where HelloSign comes in. Think of it as a virtual fax machine – you simply create a signature within the program, upload it, pop it on to the documents you need signed, and send away.
HelloSign also connects with Google Docs, allowing those all-important contracts to be immediately saved into your organization’s files.
Keep the community informed and your users engaged by managing and scheduling your social media updates in one convenient place. Hootsuite, which offers both free and paid plans, will allow you to schedule important tweets and Facebook posts, while also monitoring how many responses and views you’re getting. You can also set Hootsuite up to manage teams and members, and assign specific team members the task of responding to certain messages.
Whether you have one designated person in charge of social media, or an entire time tasked with facilitating your marketing, HootSuite will undoubtedly take the hassle out of getting your message heard.
You didn’t think we’d leave out the best tool of them all, did you?!
Pay 4 School Stuff allows organizations to quickly and efficiently collect funds and manage forms. You’ll no longer need to chase members or participants (or the parents of members and participants, as the case may be) for their dues, t-shirt money, or registration forms. They can simply log-in to the portal, pay for any items or fees, and complete their registrations securely and electronically. Pay 4 School Stuff also eliminates the necessity of designating a member to handle the cash and deposits – all payments made via Pay 4 School Stuff are automatically, and electronically, deposited to your organization’s bank account.