Numerous challenges such as pollution, global warming, and the destructive influence of greenhouse gases have necessitated a collective response toward protecting the environment and providing a healthy ecosystem for all earthy creatures to survive.
Recognizing the global need for environmental protection, one of the world’s largest environmental organizations engaged the Agiliway team to create a platform that serves the significant purpose of urging individuals worldwide not only to refrain from harming the environment but also actively contribute to its revival through donations, creating and signing petitions, and other initiatives. This involved communication with team members and donors, and quick access to the information to keep up with the most recent news.
In the article, we share our experiences with building the complex platform that covers all the needs of an environmental NGO and what implementations were performed to ensure seamless operations of an organization.
How to enhance the platform operations?
The Agiliway team approached this project with a commitment to developing an advanced platform that would facilitate efficient management of the organization’s processes. Because of the complexity of the project, Agiliway had to focus on two main subjects: seamless platform management and enhancing user experience. For this reason, a very close collaboration with the client was a must.
All the efforts led to a number of comprehensive updates to the existing platform, which included:
- In response to the client’s request, a newer version of the Symfony framework was implemented, enhancing the platform’s overall performance and compatibility with other technologies.
- A user-friendly interface for petition signing was created, elevating the experience for users contributing to environmental causes.
- Recognizing the complexity of the platform, the user interface underwent significant changes to enhance user experience for both donors and team members.
- Donation functionality was created, utilizing iFrame to create a form and input the website’s URL, facilitating an efficient donation process.
- To address the 5-second lag experienced when browsing through pages, a database optimization was performed, enhancing overall system responsiveness.
- The platform’s usability was expanded by fixing language-switching issues, ensuring that users across the globe can choose the preferred language.
- A feature was developed to facilitate better management of signatories and petitions, streamlining the petition process for both administrators and users.
- Another important feature added to petitions was email confirmation of signatures, adding an extra layer of verification and credibility to the petitions.
- A list of questions after signing a petition was revised, providing additional insights and engagement opportunities with users.
- Recognizing the sensitivity of donor information, a feature was developed to anonymize donation data after six months, ensuring transparency and protecting donor privacy at the same time.
- The feature for data import from Excel was updated, allowing to archive data and generate CSV files using the jQuery library.
How to Manage Projects within an NGO with CiviCRM
Effective management of internal processes is crucial for organizations, particularly for those that operate globally. Leveraging its partnership with CiviCRM, Agiliway extended the platform’s functionality by implementing multiple modules to meet the organization’s needs.
Extension for Internal Communication
Recognizing the importance of efficient internal communication, Agiliway developed an extension within CiviCRM that operates as a task manager. This extension facilitates the creation and tracking of tasks, subtasks, comments, and more. The solution required the existing CiviCRM instruments, customized to align with the client’s business logic, and has been in use by our client since 2020.
The current functionality of the platform includes:
- Creating tasks for team members
- Monitoring project status and flow
- Project reporting capabilities
- Ensuring rapid, hence, effective communication within teams
- Monitoring member’s participation, including contributors’ and donors’ activity within the organizations.
Synchronization with Gmail
A synchronization between the organization’s website email and CiviCRM was implemented. This integration ensures that every email sent to the website’s email automatically synchronizes with CiviCRM, creating a case entity. Website administrators can continue communication within CiviCRM without the need to open their email each time. Additionally, functionalities such as view, forward, reply,andreply were enhanced, along with an autosave option for drafting emails.
Incorporating a Payment System for Contributions/Donations
Addressing the financial needs of the NGO, Agiliway undertook the task of performing a payment system integration making it possible for our client to accept contributions from both cards and other financial services. This system acts as a mediator between CiviCRM and the client’s organization, is compatible with CiviCRM, and provides all the details on donations to the client’s accounting team.
This aspect of the project involved the development of an additional service to facilitate seamless data processing between CiviCRM and various payment systems. Additional focus was made on prearranged scheduling for recurring payments in the client’s system. As the system had a feature of recurring payments, our task was to update recurring payments and synchronize related data with CiviCRM. This involved creating a form that automates the processes of synchronizations and updates.
The enhanced UI design, upgrades of functionality, framework updates, fixed bugs, etc. resulted in a platform that empowers our client to streamline NGO project management both internally and externally. The user-friendly UI facilitates administrators in handling petitions more efficiently, while also motivating users to actively contribute to environmental protection. The updates not only respond to existing challenges but also allow the organization to navigate future environmental initiatives with increased efficiency and impact.
As we continue to face global environmental challenges, such initiatives reveal the pivotal role that technology can play in mobilizing individuals and organizations toward a sustainable and harmonious coexistence with our planet. The journey towards environmental preservation is ongoing, and the Agiliway team remains committed to supporting such initiatives that contribute to the well-being of our planet and future generations.