Nonprofits, Small Business & Startups, and Technology

Software connects volunteers through text messages

September 4, 2014
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Volgistics Inc. has introduced an SMS text messaging feature incorporated in its existing volunteer logistics software for its customers at no additional cost. Courtesy Thinkstock

A Grand Rapids company that develops software to help organizations manage their volunteers has added a new feature to its online platform to improve effective communication.

Volgistics Inc., a volunteer management organization located at 400 76th St. SW, Byron Center, has introduced a SMS text messaging feature incorporated in its existing volunteer logistics software for its customers at no additional cost.

The volunteer software solutions company’s addition of text messaging to its customizable online platform enables organizations to communicate directly with volunteers who choose to participate by submitting their mobile phone number. Tim Long, customer experience specialist at Volgistics, said the text messaging feature allows customers to relay information to volunteers with the same technology they are comfortable using.

“We have had a lot of requests for it. There is also the ability to communicate with volunteers more effectively; using a means that they use to communicate is a big bonus for a lot of volunteer organizations,” said Long. “The older volunteers are becoming more accustomed to some of the newer technologies so it is important that we are able to utilize those. Email is becoming less and less popular, especially with the very young crowd.”

With the text messaging feature, organizations can communicate with a single individual, an entire group, or a select number of volunteers based on specific criteria set by the company.

The web-based software enables different nonprofit organizations to manage their operations through: scheduling; tracking; database for volunteer information; reporting; recruiting; application forms; and the VicNet portal. The optional module allows volunteers online access to check messages, schedule openings, and update profile information.

Although Volgistics is charged a small fee for every message sent with the new SMS text messaging feature, the company decided to offer the service to customers for free, according to the press release.

“It is an added value to our customers,” said Long. “The cost for us is actually pretty minimal compared to the increase we will get by being one of the only volunteer management companies that offers this feature.”

Launched in 2004, Volgistics provides volunteer information technology for more than 3,600 organizations to help manage more than 4.2 million volunteers. The greater Grand Rapids area company evolved from Red Ridge Software Company, which developed the VoluneerWorks software in 1993 for Microsoft Windows.

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