Scout4x4 & Compass
As an all adult section pre Compass adult management wasn't as easy as you might think. With 2 Scout Active Support Units (SASU) in our group with nearly 100 adults managing & organising them all was impossible using the former membership database. While we could have all members there and search them there was very limited functionality for our group.
Then along came Compass and over the course of Dec and early Jan we spent a lot of time working in the system to figure it out, get our head around it and sort out the many issues that had happened with the data migration. For starters our manager didn't seem to have an appointment anymore! Fortunately a trip into the Info Centre while at Gilwell in December saw this issue sorted in a couple of minutes and then the journey began!
It turned out not to be the only appointment that had gone astray, with many of our members having other primary roles in Scouting it seemed that their SASU roles had been mostly kept but changed to be a member of their section, we had SASU that were Beavers & Cubs, etc! Fortunately the Compass team were aware of such issues and have made features available to change sections etc. Some members we had to re-add and backdate roles but now all members are present and correct and the fun can begin.
Now we put these issues down to the fact that with such an enormous undertaking, with such large data quantities and details there will be the odd bug, unfortunately one of those bugs ment SASU appointments were affected. This is the nature of the beast and not something that needs sleepless nights, just a little patience and observation. In the end it will all be worth it, while many may people seem to be slating the system and moaning about the change; how many have actually sat down addressed the problems and had a play - you will like it!
Compass for us means adult management made simple. We are now using the system to e-mail all members as well as send out sms text messages so everyone knows what is going on. All members InTouch emergency details are now on file in one database. This has meant no more messing around with BCC emails, complexed phonebook sharing and data collating, as it is all in one place and managed.
Another Compass success for us is we recruited a new member, new to Scouting and very keen. Within 10mins of them completing our membership form we had them set up and provisionally appointed pending a DBS check. The DBS system meant they received an email so they could select documents, we met up and 10mins later the information was with DBS in the queue to be processed. - No paperwork - no fuss.
I know Compass may not be for everyone but certainly as a free tool to manage adults in your SASU, group or county it is something that is invaluable. There are many new features being released and made functional all the time, the support is fantastic and the Info Centre is a call away with people who know the system, can help you and have still got patience left! We believe that the system will continue to get better and become as useful to you as it is currently to us.
So I guess what we are saying is don't let bad things you hear on forums and online groups put you off it's a great system worth its weight in gold - only YOU can decide how useful you find it, we put the effort in and now its an integral part of our operations with nearly 50 adult members from all over the UK.
While we aren't the info centre, if you wish to ask any questions from a user who is utilising this system to make life simple please get in touch.