It’s occurred to me that it might help folks to see some examples of custom parts that we have done to better understand the advantages of developing custom solutions for NetCommunity. I’ll include a screen shot of a few of them and a brief overview of the reason we chose to go the route of a custom solution instead of using an out of the box part.
This was one of the first custom parts we did. We are a Military Service Academy and as you can imagine using the proper title when addressing an officer is pretty (very) important. The titles themselves are also very conditional. A specific rank like O-3 might not have the same title in one branch as it does in another and your military status also plays a part in how your title and salutations are displayed. On top of all of that there are specific rules about how the tiles are abbreviated. While NetCommunity facilitates the option to add custom titles in our case that would produce a title1 & title2 dropdown list on the profile a mile long after we added all of the possible combinations to the list.
We just rolled out v2 of this custom part last week. This custom part was designed for a few different reasons but the primary one was because BBNC and RE treat event registrations as Gifts and our organization doesn’t want that. As a result of going the route of a custom part we were able to do many other things that the out-of-the-box events part doesn’t support. All of the data flows right back into RE and registrations emails are sent to the registrant and to a few internal folks.
This is a good example of what you can do once you have a few custom parts under your belt. We probably could have used the Shopping cart module that Blackbaud has separate form BBNC but that costs extra and this didn’t take long to make. All the data of the purchase flows back to the Notes tab on the user’s RE record. All the credit card transactions happen through IATS and the orders are passed to external fulfillment companies. It’s also the first custom part we wrote that uses AJAX. That’s it for this post.
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