Unbeatable Integration
January 06, 2016

Unbeatable Integration

Alicia Barevich, bCRE, bCEE | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 8 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User

Modules Used

  • Pro

Overall Satisfaction with Blackbaud NetCommunity

We use Blackbaud NetCommunity heavily throughout the school. It integrates with Faculty Access for the Web and NetClassroom, which we use for grading, attendance, billing, etc. We use NetCommunity as our parent portal and mass email system. Most departments utilize BBNC email for their mass communication, due to its fantastic integration with Raiser's Edge and Education Edge. It is also our parent and alumni portal. It allows for profile updates (as well as sports signups, immunization updates, etc). There is a directory for both current parents and alumni to use for networking and carpools. It is also where we put any information that needs to be locked behind a login. There are customizable levels of security, so we also have some "rooms" where, for example, only the board can access. It can be tricky to customize, but as a whole, is quite strong.

Pros

  • Integrates with Raiser's Edge. This is how we have set up our alumni directories and profile updates.
  • Integrates with Education Edge. This is how we have set up our parent and student information update forms.
  • Integrates with FAWeb/NetClassroom. This ensures accessibility of all portals with a single login, and it all integrates well with RE/EE.

Cons

  • It is difficult to customize. The default that we set up is not particularly mobile friendly, and it seems to be quite difficult to make even minor improvements without a consultant.
  • Along the same lines, there are pre-designed modules, for example, for events. However, all of these are set up to handle registration fees. It can only be simplified so much, so it results in an overly complicated form for free events.
  • We have been using BBNC as long as I've been in my position, but it makes email very easy to manage. It may be a bit clunky, but the traceability, levels of security, merge fields, lists that seamlessly integrate with dynamic queries in the database are amazingly good. I rely on them so heavily. Otherwise, we would be pulling CSV files on a daily basis for all emails.
  • BBNC provides a single portal for parents, students, and alumni to access resources behind a login. We are able to securely post information and manage users.
  • Convio
Convio is the only other portal I'm very familiar with. While it can handle donations, it can't do much more. NetCommunity is just unbeatable for educational institutions that manage constant mass email, a restricted constituency, and levels of security. It integrates with RE and EE for an absolutely unbeatable experience for online constituent management.
It is so well integrated with Raiser’s Edge (RE) and Education Edge (EE) I am scared of transitioning away, because that would probably mean constant data transfers. It is also fairly easy to design web pages for those without a foundation in web design. The email data is also comprehensive and shuttles read and bounce stats into a tab in RE.

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