Using Crew manager for volunteer crew on commercial tallship

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peverist
Posts: 2
Joined: Sat Jul 10, 2021 2:20 am

Using Crew manager for volunteer crew on commercial tallship

Post by peverist »

Hi

I am looking for a volunteer crewing registration solution for our Tallship Lady Nelson (http://www.ladynelson.org.au/ managed by the Tasmanian Sail Training Association based in Hobart Tasmania and would like to ask more questions about the customisation options for Crew Manager.

We have a calendar of sailing events from 90 minute tourist harbour sails to multi day trips with paying passengers that all require a minimum crew with essential key positions (Master, engineer, bosun, purser) plus crew which is usually a mix of positions (Senior Deckhand, Deckhand, Trainee). The office upload the events, the crewing officer ensures each trip has the required crew competency.
Things that are different about how we operate that would need customisation include:
  • Different profile fields - can these be fully customised to our training requirements fields (e.g. MSR (Marine Safety Refresher) completion date, FirstAid completion date, dates levels of training completed) - Can we add fields as needed via the admin menu?
  • Crewing requests are done as an expression of interest - the crew member views the calendar of events and if available updates to 'EOI' Expression of interest), crewing officer then updates to 'Accepted' or 'Not required' . Can the options for availability be customised?
  • Can different confirmation email/sms messages be sent depending on whether a crewing EOI is accepted or not?
  • Crewing is managed by the crewing officer (we have several Masters who are scheduled on rotation). The crewing officer needs to provide a list of the confirmed crew and their training status (e.g. Deckhand, Trainee) plus positions for senior crew (Bosun, Engineer) and any training comments - is there a feature to print off a crew list including this information to both send by email to the Master in advance and to be printed and as an attendance sheet for tracking sailing hours?
  • Can customisable reports be generated such as how many trips crew have been on (e.g. for identifying crew who have not been accepted and need to be given a rotation).
  • Can terms like Skipper be replaced with Master?
  • Can the full crewing membership with all fields be downloaded as a csv/excel file
  • We have technically competent people familiar with Wordpress - would we be able to make modifications through the WP admin options or are do all customisations need to be requested?
  • We would also be after the dd/mm/yyyy date format customisations I noted have been done for another Australian based site

The plan I am exploring is to redevelop our Website using Wordpress with a members area that links to a crewing registration site

I look forward to discussing options

Phil
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Re: Using Crew manager for volunteer crew on commercial tallship

Post by admin »

Hello Phil,

This request would take some time to evaluate and implement. You are heading into Winter now while we are in the midst of our sailing season. I generally do Crew Manager modifications after my boat is hauled in late October for the season. I will annotate responses below and have added numbers for cross reference. Some of these are easy while others would take some time to implement.

1. We have a calendar of sailing events from 90 minute tourist harbour sails to multi day trips with paying passengers that all require a minimum crew with essential key positions (Master, engineer, bosun, purser) plus crew which is usually a mix of positions (Senior Deckhand, Deckhand, Trainee).
***** All the position names may be customized as desired. Question - How many essential key positions are there for each event and are there additional optional positions (e.g. Trainee)? *******

2. The office upload the events, the crewing officer ensures each trip has the required crew competency.
Things that are different about how we operate that would need customisation include:
Different profile fields - can these be fully customised to our training requirements fields (e.g. MSR (Marine Safety Refresher) completion date, FirstAid completion date, dates levels of training completed) - Can we add fields as needed via the admin menu?
***** The profile fields are currently defined. It would require modification to add user definable profile fields, but this could be implemented as a planned upgrade I am considering.

3. Crewing requests are done as an expression of interest - the crew member views the calendar of events and if available updates to 'EOI' Expression of interest), crewing officer then updates to 'Accepted' or 'Not required' . Can the options for availability be customised?
Can different confirmation email/sms messages be sent depending on whether a crewing EOI is accepted or not?
**** The responses available could be mapped as follows: Yes = EOI, No = No EOI, Maybe = Possibly Interested. A modification would be required to send notification when the position is accepted or not. The concept on how to best implement the notifications would need to be worked out (e.g. notify a person of many events at once, or notify all people associated with a particular event). Email notifications are easy to implement. If Tasmania uses the same telecom providers as mainland Australia a separate sms messaging scheme described here would be needed.

4. Crewing is managed by the crewing officer (we have several Masters who are scheduled on rotation). The crewing officer needs to provide a list of the confirmed crew and their training status (e.g. Deckhand, Trainee) plus positions for senior crew (Bosun, Engineer) and any training comments - is there a feature to print off a crew list including this information to both send by email to the Master in advance and to be printed and as an attendance sheet for tracking sailing hours?
**** Crew lists by event could be printed and are sent automatically to the Crew and the Skipper (Master) at selectable times in advance of the event. This may be printed to use as an attendance sheet.

5. Can customisable reports be generated such as how many trips crew have been on (e.g. for identifying crew who have not been accepted and need to be given a rotation).
**** Currently there are two types of customizable reports: Event & Crew. Crew report fields are selectable to those in the users profile. Should item 2 above be implemented, it would also include those added fields as selectable. If a report by number of hours per sailing is desired, the totals would be by the time span of a scheduled sailing (e.g. between the start and end times of an event). Alternately it would require the addition of a filed where an administrator would have to enter the time sailed by an individual for a particular event.
There exists an automated report sent 24 hours prior to event reminders showing crew that have provided their availability (EOI) but have not been assigned a position / rotation on the crew. Each event has the following displayed - Crew Color Codes: Green crew is confirmed. Yellow crew need to verify with Skipper. Red does not crew for event. White crew position assignment not made yet and tally as Maybe - need to verify with Skipper. Thus any crew showing a white background need to be assigned a position and is easily visible to the person doing the scheduling.

6. Can terms like Skipper be replaced with Master?
***** The answer is - in some places easily, other places not so easy. Skipper is used throughout the text of the program and included on the menu structure when designated people are logged in. This is not easily changed. It is also used as a selectable crew position which may be easily replaced with Master or other term as desired.

7. Can the full crewing membership with all fields be downloaded as a csv/excel file
**** Yes on the Skipper menu using custom reports. (See 2 above)

8. We have technically competent people familiar with Wordpress - would we be able to make modifications through the WP admin options or are do all customisations need to be requested?
**** If the custom fields are added per 2 above, you could do the field customizing as WP Admin. Positions such as Master, Mate, etc. may be easily modified by an Admin. Other items are driven by the design of the Crew Manager plugin and would require custom modifications.

9. We would also be after the dd/mm/yyyy date format customisations I noted have been done for another Australian based site
*** This is implemented with selectable date formats now.

10. The plan I am exploring is to redevelop our Website using Wordpress with a members area that links to a crewing registration site
**** Crew Manager is built as a WordPress plugin that also uses the Time.ly All In One Event Calendar plugin. If you have your own developer doing a custom plugin, I could share the Crew Manager database structure used in WordPress so that additional modifications could be made on your end if desired.
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peverist
Posts: 2
Joined: Sat Jul 10, 2021 2:20 am

Re: Using Crew manager for volunteer crew on commercial tallship

Post by peverist »

HI

Thanks for the prompt and detailed reply - much appreciated

It sounds like we are not too far off what can be managed with some basic customisation but I am very interested in your offer to share the wordpress database structure so our WP developer can look at a custom version on our side. I will be catching up with our developer hopefully this week and will run the whole thing by them and see what they think (I think it looks great).

Regards
Phil
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