ONLINE CHAPTER REPORTING TOOL IS “GO” FOR LAUNCH
September 26, 2013
This is formal notice that the new Online Chapter Reporting Tool has been completed, and is ready to be used to complete your Fall 2013 chapter reports. This is an important first step in a journey that will continue over the next few months, culminating in a new online presence for the Fraternity, and tools that should make life easier for all brothers.
The chapter reporting tool has been designed to look and feel very familiar to anyone who has completed a chapter report previously, and yet to be well-structured and intuitive so that officers who are new to the process can learn quickly and easily prepare their first report. The tool itself will go live in the coming days, and the link will be provided to all national, province, and chapter leaders.
As we announced in our Fall mailing, reporting information and FAQs for the new process can be accessed directly at www.sinfonia.org/onlinereporting
. FAQs related to the process will be updated dynamically as questions roll in. On Wednesday, October 2, at 7:00 p.m. Central Time, members of the National Staff will host our first interactive webcast to provide training for chapter presidents and faculty advisors.
In addition to video presentation of the reporting tool, there will be an opportunity for brothers to ask questions and receive feedback directly. This will serve as the first offering in this year’s Sinfonia Conference Call series. The presentation will be recorded and made available for repeat viewing, or for those unable to attend the training session, via the online reporting page, as well as can be viewed on YouTube.
We ask that chapters use the Online Chapter Reporting Tool to complete this semester’s reports. If you have already submitted a report using the hard copy report booklet, that’s fine. If you encounter an issue with the online tool, you will always have the option of submitting a hard copy report. The online tool should not be an impediment to your ability to meet the October 15 fall reporting deadline, which will be enforced as it has been in the past.
We have done everything we can to streamline the process, eliminate cumbersome processing, and automate the process through structured workflows. Discrepancies or changes can be handled directly at the time of report entry, and the repetitive worksheets have been combined into one easy-to-use form. The report is built to calculate taxes and fees automatically, so you no longer need to manually tabulate results or calculate per capita rates and late fees.
The operational report form has been eliminated. The information we need to determine chapter health will be gathered using separate mechanisms which will be implemented in a later phase. Much of the information required on the existing operational report form either duplicates information available in other sources, or is no longer relevant due to process changes.
The Online Chapter Reporting Tool also includes our new universal Credit Card Payment form. Those brothers who would like to charge per capita tax and fees to a personal credit or debit card can access the form directly from their MyDesktop panel on www.sinfonia.org, which immediately transfers them to our secure payment site. The credit card payment is processed immediately and efficiently through our new card services provider which require no forms to mail in, ensuring your sensitive personal remains personal. Brothers who choose this option will be reflected as having paid per capita on the chapter report, and the amount of the paid per capita will be automatically deducted from the report total.
Based on test results and early feedback, we recommend that you fill out the matrix in the report booklet we sent you last month before you access the online report, so that you have all the information together. This is not required, but testers have found that it accelerates the entry process.
When the report is completed online and the chapter president hits the ‘Submit’ button, an email is automatically generated and delivered to all registered faculty advisors for the chapter. The email will provide a link for the FA to review the chapter report, and either approve or not approve. Approval will move the report from ’pending’ to ‘approved’ status, and automatically forward an email notification to chapter officers, individual members who have transferred or reactivated, faculty advisors, Province Governors and CPRs, and members of the National Staff. Please alert your faculty advisor(s) that the approval process is changing, and make sure that the email address for the FA on file at Lyrecrest is current and correct.
The chapter president will also receive a payment form to be printed and sent in to Lyrecrest with payment due. When the payment is received and has been posted and cleared, the report will move from ‘approved’ to ‘complete’ status.
You will have the capability of saving the report as many times as you need prior to submitting it for approval, in in event that you need to research an entry or contact a brother for information. Viewable copies of the chapter report will be retained and archived, so that chapter officers, chapter members, faculty advisors, province governors, CPRs, and National Staff members can view them as needed online.
The goal of this project has always been to remove many of the frustrations associated with the reporting process, and make the filing process less time-consuming and far less labor-intensive. We hope you are pleased with the new tool, and welcome your feedback and suggestions for improvement.
Send questions and suggestions to firstname.lastname@example.org
Ed Klint, Interim Executive Director
(800) 473-2649 (x108)