Most promising software in the social sector, but you have to be ready to invest.
December 10, 2018

Most promising software in the social sector, but you have to be ready to invest.

Kurt Kelly | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 7 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User

Overall Satisfaction with ETO by Social Solutions

ETO is being used in about a quarter of our organization. We plan to use it for half the organization--for the programs and services that are primarily not healthcare. For our healthcare programs, we are using Netsmart Avatar, an electronic health records system.

ETO is being used to track client data for our programs and is allowing us to use that data to make decisions, primarily at the management level. We plan to increase our use of ETO in this way and also plan to use ETO as a way for us to coordinate care for individuals and families who may be receiving services from multiple programs and also to help direct service staff gain insights that can help them serve their clients better.


  • ETO captures the variety of data that can give us more ways to understand what is happening with the participants we serve.
  • Participant dashboards are customizable and can be very helpful for direct service providers in serving their participants.
  • The referral system within ETO allows us to make easier referrals between programs and track how often that occurs.
  • It doesn't take a strong technical person to set up programs and other pieces within ETO.


  • The interface can be a bit clunky, especially the interface for navigating the setup forms for creating programs, touchpoints, setting security, etc. Way too many clicks and confusing workflows and terminology.
  • Lack of up-to-date documentation for administering the system.
  • Customer service has gotten a little better recently, but overall our experience up to this point has been pretty bad. And along those lines our implementation experience was awful.
  • I would say that at this point the overall ROI has been negative as we aren't getting much more out of our data by the switch we made to ETO, but the cost is much higher. I anticipate that will change as we get better at using ETO.
  • Most users that have switched to ETO in our organization prefer it to what they were using before and some are more appreciative of the value they can get from the data.
We had primarily been using Access and Excel for tracking in many of our programs prior to ETO, with the exception of a few programs that used specific programs required or provided by funders. Access and Excel have so many limitations--I don't think I need to detail them here. The specific programs required or provided by funders were, well, too specific and only addressed the needs of the one program. Client Track is very expensive and the feedback we got from others is that it is not well-supported so you have to invest a lot in terms of technical skills to be effective with it. Case Worthy wasn't very flexible. Salesforce didn't seem to have the social sector in mind in its original design so can be cumbersome. It tries to be everything, is expensive and can take a lot of resources to support.
I think ETO can be a very good solution for mid-sized and larger nonprofits. I think it is especially well suited for organizations that are trying to do more with their data (making innovative decisions, gaining insights). But in order for an organization to be successful with ETO the organization will need to be prepared to invest resources in a lot of staff training to gain the full benefits. I feel like ETO is better than anything else I've seen in the social sector and Social Solutions seems dedicated to making continuous improvements so it will likely get even better. However, that's going to come with a cost, so an organization is going to need to be ready to invest a lot more resources than a lot of non-profits are used to investing in order to reap the benefits of the system.


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