How to coordinate transportation requests among a volunteer group?
February 6, 2017 9:59 AM   Subscribe

I am part of a new volunteer group providing supports to asylum seekers, in conjunction with a non-profit, and I am looking for a simple online tool to coordinate client transportation requests with assignments to volunteers. Have you done this? What should I use?

I imagine requests will resemble "Drive from home to attorney's office at 123 Main St for 2:00pm appointment, wait one hour, drive back home" or "Drive to grocery store sometime early next week, provide assistance with shopping, drive home" or "Accompany client by bus to and from doctor's appointment, so client can learn to use the bus system."

There are 20-30 volunteers. The simplest (worst?) solution would be to email the entire group with the request, see who responds, and then confirm, or to ping a subset (e.g., "Bob and Sally tend to be free on weekdays, and they haven't driven in a while.").

This seems likely to result in quite a bit of work for me, a lot of unwanted inbox noise, and lack of clarity for who actually has an assignment. I do not know whether the clients will be more comfortable requesting transportation by phone, email, or text to me as the central coordinator, or inputing a support ticket themselves. I imagine it may vary by client. I want a solution that will be easy to use, put requests in front of volunteers readily that they can easily ignore as applicable, and result in accurate assignments (no requests without volunteers that I don't know about, and no requests where multiple drivers show up by accident).

This almost seems like I want a support ticket solution, but I am not sure. Have you done something like this? Any (free?) web-based support ticket tools that you have liked? Ideas about how I can easily cobble something together using, e.g., Google documents or calendars? Is there a name for this tool that I should be using in my searches?
posted by teragram to Computers & Internet (2 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
I wonder if you could re-purpose a sports team management app to help with this. My team uses TeamSnap (which requires a monthly fee from the organizer, but is free for athletes). Free(-ish, in some cases) alternatives include Thapos, TeamStuff, and InstaTeam.
posted by invokeuse at 8:50 PM on February 6, 2017

BaseCamp might possibly work for something like this. I think each request would be a "to do" in their system.
posted by flug at 1:37 PM on February 7, 2017

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