Bagels & Bytes Meeting Notes – October 2017

Bagels & Bytes attendees holding a meeting

Meetup Info

We had a great meetup at ACHIEVA earlier this month! Thank you to Nicole and the staff there for hosting us!

Our next meeting is in the same location on Wednesday, November 1, 8:30 – 10 am. Be sure to also mark your calendar for the December B&B Holiday Party Meetup at Dave & Busters on Friday, December 8 from 1 – 4 pm. Lunch meeting, followed by a Techie White Elephant gift exchange, then some gaming, including our annual skee-ball contest!

Here are the notes and resources from this month:

When IT is kept out of the loop

  • Sometimes tech staff are deliberately or inadvertently kept out of the loop on IT-related decisions (example: when HR staff choose a Human Resources Information System (HRIS) and don’t involve tech staff)
  • One theory is that IT represents a large expense in an organization and not involving tech staff keeps costs down.
  • Another theory is it simply boils down to organizational politics.

Why should passwords be changed frequently?

  • Is every 90 days too often?
  • The network admins in our group don’t think so.
  • Financial auditors will actually recommend changing passwords more frequently, such as every 60 days.

Can you over-customize a database?

  • Ask yourself, is the database overly complex because it needs to be or is it because business processes are overly complicated and affecting workflows in the database accordingly.
  • An interesting exercise – think about what CRM you would go with if yours blew up tomorrow and was permanently un-usable.
  • Fractured systems are the worst thing of all to deal with.

Software resources mentioned

  • Paycom – newer company doing HRIS/payroll software.
  • Mass email tools:
    • Vertical Response – good nonprofit rates (first 10K emails per month are free) but gets blacklisted a lot.
    • Constant Contact – costs more per month, but does have nonprofit pricing. Get a discount for paying for the whole year in advance. Doesn’t get blacklisted as often. Integrates with Salesforce, including the new Lightning interface.
    • MailChimp – good and not too expensive. Doesn’t get blacklisted as often. Does not integrate well with Salesforce Lightning interface.
    • Emma – possibly most costly of all, but also has the most features for marketing and fundraising included.
    • Google Groups – not necessarily a mass email tool, but can do group messaging with it.
    • Click Dimensions – works with MS Dynamics CRM in particular.

 

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Bagels & Bytes Meeting Notes – August 2017

This month…

…we met at Jewish Residential Services in the Rodef Shalom Congregation building. A big “thank you” to Paula and the JRS team for hosting us!!

We will meet there once again on Wednesday, September 6 from 8:30 – 10 am. See the sidebar to the right for ways to register.

Here are the topics and resources discussed during this month’s meeting:

  • CRM for Nonprofits (Constituent/Client/Customer Relationship Management)
  • Sharing Documents with People External to Your Organization
  • Salesforce Resources
  • Migrating to Google Drive
  • Outlook + Sharepoint Desktop Version vs. 365
    • Permissions have been a persistent issue for some
    • Training is a constant issue
    • User acceptance can be slow
      • 365 is more difficult to understand – the cloud and file sharing aspects of it
      • Files get saved over if don’t change file names from version to version
    • Can embed a Google Calendar inside of Sharepoint
    • Are we pushing older workers out by all these upgrades in tech?
    • What about outsourcing to the cloud completely?
      • Internet bandwidth must be sufficient to do true virtualization
      • Off-site hosting is more $ for service, less $ for backups, maintenance, licensing
      • JENLOR is one local company that does virtualization
    • Office 365 is on TechSoup
  • LaserJet 401 Troubleshooting
    • Old printer, but hates to get rid of it because has been a workhorse till now
    • Won’t print graphics, only text
      • Maybe is an issue with Windows security?
      • Perhaps an issue with a recent Windows update?
    • Where to e-cycle if decide to ditch it?
  • Listserv Usage
    • Reminds us of VCR tapes and DOS
    • Mass email marketing tools if wanting to do one-to-many messaging (like Constant Contact or Mail Chimp)
    • Group tools if want members to message each other and the group at large (Facebook, Google or Linked group)

Bagels & Bytes Meeting Notes – April 2017

We held our last meeting at Grow Pittsburgh for this year on April 5. Thank you Deidra and the GP staff for hosting us again! The weather finally appears to be warming up and we are looking forward to seeing everything in bloom next month when our meeting happens at the Frick Art & Historical Center on May 3!

Notes and resources from this month’s meeting:

  • MAAS 360
    • Protect mobile data
    • Can remotely wipe data for lost devices
    • Can pull out app shortcuts onto your phone desktop
  • Salesforce
    • Free up to 10 licenses
    • Not free to develop it out
    • How to clean up data?
    • Sometimes have to change your business process (like how data gets input)
    • When importing historical data, its frequently advisable to clean it up first
    • There are apps available for data cleanup that work with Salesforce
    • There are dupe record catching mechanisms built into Salesforce, but if data input is too different, they won’t catch everything
    • Set your data input policies in advance (example: abbreviations vs. spelling things out – St. vs. Street)
    • Average time to convert to a new database varies, typically 1-2 years
    • Need to think about the cost of holding onto bad data
    • How much data do you really need to bring over from the old system? You don’t carry all your assets in your pocket as cash, you may not need to carry all your data around in a single system either
    • Data/email cleanup idea: send an email around offering a drawing for a gift card to see who responds
  • Email integration with databases
  • Finding funding for technology
    • Write tech consistently into all of your grant proposals
    • Don’t be afraid to write separate proposals for technology too
  • Accessibility (non-tech discussion)

Bagels & Bytes Meeting Notes – March 2015

This month we met again at the Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh. Once again, a big “thank you” to George, Luke and the CMP staff for hosting us and providing a lovely breakfast spread!

Our next meeting is Wednesday, April 1, 8:30-9 am at the Frick Art & Historical Center in the East End.

Bagels & Bytes attendees happily discuss tech!

At the end of the meeting, we had a drawing for two prizes: a set of ear buds from Constant Contact and a Paypal card reader.  (Cindy L. picked up these items as swag from the Nonprofit Technology Conference last week.)  The winners were George Brzezinski and John Ingram.

George Brzezinski and John Ingram holding their prizes.

Here are the meeting notes for this month:

Allegheny B&B Meeting – September 2012

This month was our final meeting at Jewish Residential Services’ office in Rodef Shalom, Shadyside.  Once again, we are grateful to Paula Pagnotta and JRS for hosting!  Next month (Oct. 3, same time as usual) we will be at ACHIEVA on Bingham Street in the South Side.

Resources and Notes from our September Meeting

  • Discussed Michelle’s SharePoint class that she’s teaching at the Bayer Center the morning of Oct. 30.  (See our online catalog for details if you are interested.)
  • Talked about TechNow (Oct. 25)
  • Board portals – can create a simple one using WordPress’s private pages function
  • Dreamhost has free WordPress hosting for nonprofits
  • Windows 2012 server available now
  • Windows 8 coming soon  – supposedly the day after TechNow (Oct. 26)
  • IE vs. Firefox vs. Chrome?
    • Depends on applications you are running at org
    • Introducing different browsers means supporting different browsers
    • Don’t always see an error message…sometimes just blank screen
  • Rose having monthly staff tech tips meeting.
    • Tries to do a few tips each month that everyone relates to.
    • Very quick less than half hour
      • YouTube is a good source for tech tutorials
      • Idea – Searching for the text of the error message
      • Idea – Summer searching videos released by google…was a class
      • Idea – Alt+f for finding specific words on a page, for example
  • Dual monitors are slowly becoming more popular…can increase productivity
  • Fundraising database question – what else is out there besides Sage?
  • For mass emails, Vertical Response offers a nonprofit account with 10K free emails per month.  MailChimp also has a free plan.  (Both similar to Constant Contact, but generally less expensive.)

Finally, Deb Cherry sent this resource after the meeting – “This might be useful resource for folks looking into mobile deployments and/or BYOD. Especially the iPhone Configurator Utility (iPad too).”
https://www.apple.com/support/iphone/enterprise/  Thanks, Deb!

 

The 2012 Bagels & Bytes Meeting Calendar is here.

Allegheny B&B – April 2012 Meeting

This month we met at UCP/CLASS‘s (relatively) new building in Regent Square!  A huge thank you goes to Michelle Hines of UCP/CLASS for not only hosting the meeting, but for taking care of the food and running the meeting while Cindy Leonard was away at the 2012 Nonprofit Technology Conference.

We will meet one more time in this location on Wednesday, May 2, 8:30 – 10 AM, at the UCP/CLASS building just off the Parkway East (1400 S. Braddock).  Visit the 2012 Bagels & Bytes Meeting Calendar for more information.

Resources and Notes from the Meeting (also compiled by Michelle – thank you!!)

  • Telephone Recycling
    • Look at existing vendor as part of the sell agreement
    • Family Resources had a 3rd Party company they found
    • eBay
  • Credit Card Processing
  • Migration to WordPress from a CMS
    • Suggested talking to Cindy from the Bayer Center more (yes, please do at the next meeting – am sorry i missed this discussion!)
    • Great resources can be found if you search carefully on YouTube – especially helpful for training other staff.
    • Suggested making your own personal blog to get used to WordPress
    • Other options than WordPress
  • Some stories about project outcomes from Technology Consulting in the Community from CMU http://www.cmu.edu/tcinc/
  • Shared information on the Pittsburgh Chapter of the SharePoint User Group http://www.pittsburghsharepoint.com/pages/home.aspx
  • A good resource for computer licenses that you may not be able to get on Tech Soup is Constant Computer Bargains http://www.ccbnonprofits.com/
  • A discussion about how good Microsoft has made Office 365 look but need reviews on if Office 365 works like the presentation or is it truly lagging behind Google Apps.
  • Shared April Fools Pranks
    • Users leaving computer unlocked having auto text generated for them
    • Changing ringtone to the Emergency Weather tone
    • Tiger Direct’s personal nuclear power plant
    • For other you can visit this website: http://www.geekosystem.com/april-fools-2012/