Community Enterprise (CE) is open-source enterprise software for organizations to manage their operations, communications, and fundraising. In a single Web-based interface, CE integrates more than 20 modules for managing a broad range of activities, especially content management (CMS) and constituent-relationship management (CRM).
The interface groups the modules into the following broad categories:
- Sites: Create a new Web site or administer multiple existing sites
- Content: Manage Web site and e-commerce content and other organizational documents, events, grant or job applications, and polls
- Contacts: Keep track of information about individuals, households, organizations, and committees, including a history of interactions with them
- Communications: Send e-newsletters, host Web discussion forums, and send advocacy messages to political or media representatives
- Financial: Manage donations, e-commerce payments, and expense reports; keep track of transactions in a basic double-entry bookkeeping system
- Reports: Create reports on virtually any data in CE; view Web site metrics like page views, downloads, and search terms
An animated and narrated look at the interface is available on the CitySoft Web site.
Here are some notable features of this product:
- In one software package, organizations get the the equivalent of several standalone applications, such as separate CRM, CMS, donor management, event registration, and newsletter products.
- CE is open-source software, meaning that an organization receives a full copy of the CE system source code and is free to modify it. Its design allows upgrades and patches to be applied as long as customizations are consistent with base code compatibility.
- The visual appearance of various parts of CE can use CE's built-in design templates or incorporate custom designs. Different parts or different Web sites can use different designs.
- Email campaign metrics provide feedback about sends, bounces, opens, and clickthroughs.
- The content management workflow feature enables distributed, approval-based publishing. The Web editor allows nontechnical users to create pages.
Before organizations request a donation of Community Enterprise, they should choose a hosting method and develop an implementation plan, as discussed next.
Community Enterprise is a hosted application. Organizations can select one of three hosting options:
- Internal hosting. Organizations can host Community Enterprise on their own Web servers. The hosting environment must meet the criteria listed in the System Requirements.
- Third-party hosting: Organizations can use a Web-hosting company of their choice. The organization's technical staff or consultant or the hosting company's staff can set up Community Enterprise on the hosting site. The hosting environment must meet the criteria listed in the System Requirements.
- CitySoft hosting. Organizations make arrangements directly with CitySoft to host the application on its servers on a month-to-month basis at the normal rate of $75 a month with a one-time $100 setup fee.
Organizations choosing third-party or internal hosting might need additional licenses, such as Activmail or Verisign, that are included in CitySoft hosting.
CitySoft strongly recommends use of an implementation consultant for setup, training, and ongoing maintenance and support. Though a consultant is not mandatory, CitySoft recommends that organizations hire at least a few hours of time from an experienced consultant to plan their implementation.
Click here for a list in Portable Document Format of consultants experienced with Community Enterprise. Another way to get in contact with a consultant is to go to the CitySoft Web site and click Request a Demo. Note in your request that you are interested in the TechSoup Stock donation. CitySoft will refer your organization to a consultant who can demonstrate the product.
CitySoft provides product documentation to CE users and also user forums for asking and answering questions. Live support is not available from CitySoft.
The administrative fee for this product is not refundable, and the product cannot be exchanged.
Obtaining This Product
When your donation request has been approved, TechSoup will send a message to your organization email address with instructions for obtaining and activating this product.