Customize Your Member Portal: Show and Hide Buttons

If you’re unfamiliar with the member portal, here is a series of articles about it. In brief, it gives your folks the ability to:

  • Update their own demographic information.
  • Pull a statement.
  • Make payments, both to amounts owed, and as contributions.
  • Set up recurring payments.
  • Search for other members of the congregation.
  • Link directly to your ShalomCloud shopping cart.

This specific change is rather narrow in scope, actually. It gives you finer control over which buttons you show on the member portal. You can

  • Show or hide the button to “Edit my family”
  • Show or hide the button to “See my statement”

Here is a video, showing how to make those changes, from the administrator’s perspective; and, then, what it looks like from the member’s perspective.

Customize Subject Line for Donation Acknowledgements

Background: this article on bulk acknowledgement of contributions.

And this one: bulk acknowledgement of commitments.

The announcement highlights an update regarding the subject lines of email acknowledgements. You now have the flexibility to enter a custom, fit-for-purpose subject line!

It’s not a required field, by the way. If you leave it blank, the emails will have the subject line as “Donation”.

Here’s a brief (3 minutes, 14 seconds) video showing the new subject line field in action.

Not one, not all, but a selection– the shopping cart

Now available with the ShalomCloud shopping cart — grouping of items.

Until now, there were two styles of links or buttons that you could put onto your web site, or into email. You could provide a link to all available items; or you could provide a link to a single item.

We now offer the ability to create group codes, and then to assign items to a group code. For example, you might have several items related to a forthcoming Shabbat dinner. Adult member, child member, Adult non-member, child non-member. Or, perhaps, adult chicken, adult vegetarian option, child chicken, child vegetarian option. You can now create a group, call it Shabbat, and attach that group to all of those variations.

When you create a group, the “Show” screen provides the link that will display all items in the group, and no others.

Group code defined

Group code in action

Convenience — Copy High Holiday Honors from a Prior Year

If you’ve used our Aliyot/Honors capability in a previous year, you can now copy those records into the current year.

If you’re unfamiliar with the ShalomCloud Aliyot capability, best to set up some time with us. We can go through the entire round trip, including:

  • Setting up the honors
  • Offering, or nominating, persons for each honor.
  • How to follow-up, either for those who have not responded.
  • How to send reminders for accepted honors.

In contrast, this announcement pertains to cases where you have a set of prior honors, and wish to get started on the new year.

It’s simply a matter of choosing a service (Erev Rosh Hashanah, Kol Nidre, et al.), using the “copy” link, and designating the date and time of the respective service.

Also — if you wish to copy the honorees from a prior year, there is a button for that, too. Or, if you want to start fresh, you can copy the honors themselves, but leave the honorees open.

Here’s a video that runs through this new process.

Copy high holiday honors

Now Available — Add/Change/Delete Purchase History

Until this change, the ShalomCloud shopping cart purchase history relied solely on purchases made online. You had no way to change those records. So, if someone accidentally signed up twice, or signed up and later informed you that they could not attend, you had no way to update that data. Your record counts would be off, and the funds collected (or to be collected), would be off.

Another situation: if someone wanted to make a purchase, or register for an event, but would prefer not to use the online shopping cart, you had no way to indicate that. Perhaps they mailed in a check for a Shabbat dinner, for example, and you wanted to add that reservation to the purchase history.

This change allows you to accommodate those situations. You can delete a purchase; and you can manually insert a purchase.

One major caveat, though — any financial ramifications would have to be handled separately, via the normal financial transaction screens.

Here’s a video that demonstrates some basic use cases.

More control, more variety — choose your email template for statements

If you send monthly/quarterly statements by email, this may interest you.

Prior to now, you needed an email template, specifically named “send_statement_link.” Now, you’ll see a drop-down box, that lets you choose your email template for statements.

choose your email template for statements

This may be useful in a couple of circumstances, such as:

If you want to distinguish the statement email by monthly vs quarterly, or

If you send category-specific statements by email, and you want the content to be relevant to that category.

If you’re interested in some of the previous developments in regard to statements, feel free to peruse these articles:

New Option to Suppress Detail on Statements

The ShalomCloud statements, by default, show amounts charged, amounts credited, the balance, AND the individual payments that sum to the amounts credited.

If you (or your audience), find that listing the individual payments are clutter, or are confusing, you now have the option to suppress that detail. Here’s a before-and-after snippet:

Default, in effect today:

And, then, if you wish to choose this new option:

If you prefer the second format, here’s how to make that change:

  • Go to Home -> Declare synagogue options
  • Scroll down, until you see an option to Suppress detail on statements
  • Select the radio button, Suppress detail
  • Submit

It’s hopefully a “set-and-forget” option, rather than a choice you’d need to make every statement run.

Here’s a video showing the above in action.

Query for Deceased Members

You may or may not be aware that there is a flag to mark a member as deceased:

You can maintain this field under family maintenance; however, we recommend that you use more of an automated process, as described in this article.

But that’s not the point of this post. By default, the member query excludes deceased people. That’s in order to avoid the possibility of sending communications, either text or email, to those individuals.

In contrast, you may be interested in seeing information about those deceased persons. This change enables you to do that, by checking a box on the member query:

Note that, when you do choose to show deceased members, ShalomCloud automatically includes all billing statuses. That is a convenience, so that you needn’t worry about the default billing status of Active.

Not Just One, but Many — on Statement Runs

Modest change here — having to do with your periodic statements.

One of the selection criteria on statement runs had been the ability to select all families, or one family:

With this change, you can now select multiple families or all:

Probably the most advantageous circumstance where this would be useful is this: Suppose you primarily send statements by email. The system dutifully warns of any families who would have received a statement, but for whom the system has no email address.

Before, you would proceed by selecting the first family and printing the statement. Then, you would select the second family; and so forth, one at a time.

Now, you can select all the families for whom there is no email address, and obtain printed statements in one step.

Here’s a video that illustrates the above.

By the way, if you want to see a series of articles about the various developments concerning statements, please peruse this collection.

New Field — Community per Family

What do we mean by the term “Community?” Families often live in what can generically be referred to as a community. For example, a senior living community. Or, an apartment community. Or, a Home Owners Association community. It’s just a way to group families by a geographic area, more local than zip code.

Now, how might you use this new field? By first designating the communities in the Configuration menu

you can then assign these communities to the respective families who reside there.

And, then, to harvest that information, you can either

  1. Run a family query for one or more communities, or
  2. Run a member query, to list all the people in those communities.

For example, suppose you’re running a Purim program at one of the senior living communities. By using this new field, you could send a targeted email, announcing the event, to members of that community.

Here’s a video showing how to enter the communities, and then how to query both families and members, by community.