For some organizations, volunteers will be contributing hours towards a household requirement for their family. This is a typical scenario for many of the schools and other parent programs that use Track it Forward. There are 2 primary options for tracking a family requirement so we will review each one in more detail.
Using a Grouping Field (Premium feature)
Organizations can create a grouping field on the volunteer profile to combine hours for multiple users towards a milestone. This allows each person to maintain their own user account, but their hours will be added together automatically for the requirement. For example, if there is a grouping field for "Student ID of Youngest Child", any user who enters "12345" will be linked as part of the same group.
- Each family member can login separately and maintain their own username/password
- Easy to track which family member is signing up for an event and/or logging hours
- Each family member can receive email notifications and reminders
- May require additional review to ensure grouping field is linking the correct users (i.e. If family members don't enter the same value for the field)
- Some families may not utilize multiple accounts (i.e. 1 person ends up completing all of the hours for the household)
- May increase the subscription cost if everyone registers separately (Pricing is per 100 users)
For detailed instructions on setting up Grouping, you can view this article: Grouping Volunteers
Sharing a User Account
Some organizations prefer to limit accounts to 1 per family and instruct volunteers to share a user account. In this scenario, all family members would login with the same username/password and interact with the site as a single user. Some organizations will modify the profile to track users as "Family Name" instead of the default First Name, Last Name. If organizations need to track individual volunteers, they may add a custom field to the hour log to track which family member completed the hours.
- May decrease the subscription cost since there will be fewer user accounts (Pricing is per 100 users)
- Limits the potential for inactive user accounts
- Easier to track family activities/RSVPs since everything is under 1 user account
- Only 1 person (email address) will receive notifications and reminders
- Difficult to differentiate who is volunteering on specific days
- Sharing login credentials can potentially create confusion
Each program is different so organizations can choose the method that works best for their program! In some cases, organizations will use a combination of both options to provide additional flexibility for families.