This article applies primarily to Site Managers (admins) of Galaxy Connect platforms.
Welcome to the FAQs page for Site Managers! If you have a question that isn't addressed here, you can search for it on this site or contact one of our galactic support agents.
Reports and Data
Other Site Customizations
If you are a brand-new Connect client, you'll receive links to the proper training from the Customer Care team member who is handling the launch of your site. If you're a new site manager for a site that has been around for a while, your best bet is to contact our Customer Care team and let them know that you are in need of training. They can then direct you to the right trainings for managing your site.
We do offer regularly scheduled webinars for Connect clients. If you are a Connect site manager, we recommend taking the following webinars in the order shown below. Click on a title to sign up.
- Agency Manager Training - This is a prerequisite to the site manager trainings because it introduces you to your Connect site and walks you through the agency manager's role and capabilities in the system.
- Site Setup Training - This training walks you through the "Site Settings" portion of the manager panel. It covers front-end design, spotlights, registration settings, custom causes and interests, hours-submission questions, and more.
- Site Management Training - This training covers management of agencies, needs, and users. It also introduces you to email, automated notifications, and reports.
- Initiatives Training - This training is what you'll need if you're planning a large-scale event (such as a Day of Caring) and will need to group volunteer opportunities under a single banner.
Note: We don't recommend taking the Initiatives training until you've been through the Site Setup and Site Management webinars.
Your Connect site requires at least three pieces of information for users who are joining the site:
- First name
- Last name
- Email address
If you want to require other information, you can go to Site Settings and click the User Registration tab. Here you can decide which fields to add to the user registration form, and which fields to required. Click here to learn more.
Yes, the Facebook sign-up button can be disabled. If you wish to disable it, please contact us with your request.
When a volunteer fans an agency, they'll get notifications when that agency has posted a new need or event; fanning an agency is a way of "following" the agency online.
When a volunteer selects a favorite agency, they're saying that they'd like for their volunteer hours to have a financial benefit via corporate grants (such as in a "Dollars for Doers" type of program) for their selected nonprofit. (Click here to learn more about these types of programs)
Tip: If your community uses "Dollars for Doers" or a similar program, you may want to override "favorite agency" with a term that better reflects the program being used in your community--for instance, "Dollars for Doers agency," "Grants for Time agency," etc. Contact our Customer Care team to request a language override.
The look and feel of your Connect platform's home page, or Dashboard, are controlled in Site Settings. Here are a couple of articles that go into detail regarding your site colors, banners, and map.
If you are interested in customizations beyond the scope of the items listed here, please review this article on customizations before contacting us.
Yes, you can! Your Connect platform uses certain platform-specific terms (such as "needs" and "agencies"), but we realize that not all organizations use or prefer those same terms. If you'd like a term changed, or overridden, throughout your Connect platform, contact us with your request.
Note: Click here for a list of terms we are able to change on your site.
An inactive need is one that has been manually deactivated from the system. An expired need is one whose "Runs Until," "Happens On," or shift date is in the past. Inactive and expired needs can be accessed by both agency managers and site managers, but they cannot be accessed by volunteers. Volunteers can still submit hours for expired needs (since they are still active), but they cannot submit hours for a need that has been manually deactivated.
We do not recommend changing the date of an expired need, as this can affect need-response data. If you wish to create a need based on an expired (or an inactive) one, we recommend creating a new need by cloning the existing one.
"Individual hours" refer to hours submitted that are not associated with a need response. As a site manager, you have the option of allowing users to submit individual hours, as explained in this article.
You can approve or decline individual hours in the same way you would approve or decline need-related hours:
- Go to Volunteerism > Hours.
- In the row of the hours to approve, select Approved or Declined from the Status dropdown.
Note: You can sort the Need row so that all of the individual hours are listed first in the table.
To view the details of individual hours, go to the Reports area of your manager panel and view the "Details of Individual Hours" report.
As site manager, you can decide what fields appear in the registration forms, and which fields are mandatory.
- This User Registration Form article explains how to specify what fields appear on the form, and which are mandatory. It also provides instructions for customizing the default registration process and setting up accepted email domains (if you're limiting registrations to employees of a certain company, for instance).
- This Agency Registration Form shows how to add fields to the default registration, and how to make fields mandatory.
If you're thinking about allowing volunteers to skip certain steps in their registration process, please read this article first to learn why the default steps are important, and how your volunteers' answers can enhance their experience of the site.
Before explaining the difference between these two types of users, it's important to understand that three user types are recognized in the manager panel:
- Site managers
- Site users (consist of agency managers, volunteers, and visitors)
A site manager (also known as an admin) can access the manager panel and make changes to the site as a whole. A few examples of site manager capabilities are listed below:
- Controlling how teams are signed up and how hours are logged (in Site Settings)
- Editing the automatic notification templates and sending email blasts
- Adding, editing, and deleting agencies, needs, events, and users
- Running reports
An agency manager can make changes only to his or her agency. The agency manager's primary capabilities include editing their agency profile, posting needs and events, and approving reported hours.
Because the agency manager has no control over the site itself, the agency manager is considered a site user (rather than a site manager).
To make someone a site manager (or change a site manager to a user):
- From your manager panel, go to Volunteerism > Users.
- After locating the user in the list, click on the user's name.
- From the User Type dropdown, select the new user type (Manager or User).
- Click Submit to save your change.
Click here to learn more about the different user types.
It's easy to throw together a list of your site's agency managers. Here's how you do it:
- From your manager panel, go to Volunteerism > Users.
- Open the user filter by clicking the "down" arrow.
- Run a filter on Volunteer > Agency Manager > is an agency manager.
- Click Submit.
The table below the filter will now display all of your active agency managers. To export these into a spreadsheet:
- From the Select an Action dropdown, select Export Users.
- Click the Export Current User List button that appears.
The system generates a spreadsheet listing all filtered users, their email addresses, and other registration data, as well as the dates they last logged into your site.
Note: The filter User Data > User Tags > is agencymanager calls up list of every active user who has ever been an agency manager--even if they are no longer agency managers.
Note: Click here for information on how to send an email to your site's agency managers.
"Reserved Response" is a placeholder for team members whose contact information was not provided by the team leader at sign-up. (Example: If a team leader signs up five additional team members but does not provide their contact information, those unidentified volunteers are displayed in your records as five instances of "Reserved Response.")
To prevent this from happening, go to Settings > Main Settings. Under the Volunteers heading, for Team Registration Email Required, and ensure that On is selected.
Note: If On is selected, team leaders will be required to provide contact information for all team members when responding to a need.
For more information on this option in Site Settings, see Managing Site Settings.
Your platform's terms and conditions are stored as custom pages, and you can update them at any time. To edit your terms and conditions:
- From your manager panel, go to Content > Custom Pages.
You will see a list of all of the custom pages on your site.
- Click on the name of the document to edit (privacy for the user terms and conditions; privacy_agency for the agency terms and conditions).
- Make the desired changes.
- Click Submit Page to save your changes.
Note: It should not be necessary to adjust the settings for this custom page.
New user must agree to the terms and conditions before they can open an account on the site. When terms and conditions are updated, there is a challenge of getting the site's existing users to acknowledge and sign them. As site manager, you have several ways of approaching this challenge.
- Begin by sending an email blast to all existing users, letting them know that the terms and conditions have changed. If they agree to the new terms via email, you can make a note of it in their user profile.
- For agency managers, you have the option of marking their agencies "Pending" until they have agreed to the new terms. Let them know in the email that their profile pages, needs, and events will be visible on the public site again once they have consented to the new terms.
Emails are sent through the Email Blast tool. This tool can be filtered so that an email can go to only those users who are agency managers. To create this filter:
- From your manager panel, go to Communication > Email Blast.
- Click the down arrow to open the user filter.
- Create a filter for Volunteer > Agency Manager > is an agency manager.
- Click Submit. You'll notice that the number of recipients changes.
- Proceed with writing and sending your email as explained here.
Note: To send an email to only those users who are not agency managers, you can build a filter for Volunteer > Agency Manager > is not an agency manager.
Templates are triggered by specific actions taken on the site; for example, if someone responds to a need, they will automatically receive and email thanking them for responding.
To deactivate a notification template:
- From your manager panel, select Communication > Notifications.
- In the Status column for the notification to be deactivated, select Inactive.
It's vital that agency managers receive the various need responses, event RSVPs, and other emails that go out. To ensure that notifications are being received, your Connect system checks monthly for bounced emails to agency managers. If it finds anything, an automated notification goes to all of the site managers on your site.
Click here to learn more about this notification and what steps you should take upon receiving it.
In general, attachments to email blasts are discouraged, and for several reasons. Here are just a few:
- Attachments are suspicious. For many people, attachments are red flags. Tech-savvy users are less likely to open mass-mailed attachments, and spam filters are more likely to block such emails from going to a recipient's inbox.
- Attachments have file size limits. Many email servers will not accept a file over 10MB in size. Smaller files can be emailed, but they can clutter up recipients' inboxes, not to mention your own email system.
- Attachments are storage hogs. Related to the previous item, some email accounts will bounce your email once they're full. Your own mail server can suffer from lack of storage if you're sending email blasts with attachments.
- Attachments can't be tracked. While you can see if someone opened your email, there's no way of knowing whether the recipient opened the attachment.
In short, it's generally not a good practice to include attachments when you're sending emails to dozens or hundreds of people.
To make your email less "suspicious," to save space, and to facilitate tracking, we strongly recommend that you provide a link to outside files (rather than attach them) to any email. If an recipient clicks the link in the email, you'll be able to see that in your email stats. Here's some information on how to create links to PDFs, Word documents, and other types of documents you would otherwise attach to an email.
Another option, for certain file types at least, is to embed the file in your email. For a video, you can use the embed code; just remember to switch open the HTML source editor before copying it into the Text Editor. For a simple image file, you would use the "Insert Image" function of the Text Editor.
Automated notifications are sent on your site's behalf from the galaxydigital.com domain. Because mail sent from a no-reply address is more likely to make it through spam filters, we use the return address of firstname.lastname@example.org.
You can override this address, but it will involve having the new address verified by Amazon Web Services. Click here to learn more. We don't recommend overriding it, however, for a couple of reasons:
- Your site's emails originate from email@example.com, and if you "mask" your address information with something different, it may be flagged as spam. (Spammers often try to "disguise" or mask their email as originating from somewhere else (such as a respected company) in an effort to trick people into opening it, and good spam filters are very sensitive to this.)
- If you replace the default with a real email address and notifications go to email addresses that are no longer active, you'll get "mailer-daemon" notices informing you of the failure to send the email. The can cause an inconvenience for you if your system sends out multiple notifications each day, and your user accounts include lots of no-longer-active email addresses.
Yes. A Connect site times out after two hours of inactivity. Once the system has timed out, you will need to login again in order to access your account.
Form labels are not supported until IE version 10. If the labels are not showing up on the forms, it's likely that the browser being used is IE version 9 or earlier. The user will need to update your browser (or switch to a different browser) in order to see the labels.
Links to needs can often be found in a simple Google search--even if the need has expired (or been deactivated). When this happens, or if someone reads an old email and clicks a link to a need that has since expired, the user is redirected to your Connect site's home page.
Even though the expired need is not displayed, it still counts as a view, and is reflected thus in the "Needs Viewed" report.
Galaxy Digital realizes that our default terms will not be perfect for everyone. You can override quite a few terms and phrases that appear in the default setup. Click here to learn what can be overridden.
If you'd like to have one or more terms overridden, contact our Customer Care team, and they'll make the change for you!
By default, a Connect site has 16 causes and 16 interests available. You can ask to have that number increased or decreased by a multiple of four. In other words, your site can have for 4, 8, 12, 16, 20, or 24 causes or interests. You do not need to have the same number of each; for example, you can have 4 causes and 24 interests.
If you decrease the number or causes or interests, the ones that get "cut" will no longer be available to agency managers. They will, however, continue to show up on the site as long as an agency has selected them. For example, if a need has the "Food Prep" interest selected and you "cut" the Food Prep interest from your site, the associated icon will still show up on the need. At the same time, Food Prep will no longer be available for any needs posted after it has been cut.
If you need fewer or more of either, you can request this by contacting our Customer Care team.