The Carpool application is designed to communicate its underlying concepts clearly and simply, so formal training of patrons is not required. The car pool manager needs a somewhat wider body of knowledge about the application for which training is provided on-the-job, as described below.
What carpoolers need to know
Prospective carpool patrons are offered a 'test drive' of the application before they sign up and before they provide any personal data. They are asked to read the terms and conditions of the carpool before joining. An FAQ page is also provided which poses and answers all the obvious questions that have occurred to those who have gone before. These questions typically serve to clarify the mechanics of how the car pool operates and the terms and conditions of membership.
The 'test drive', the prompts and the other supporting content on the car pool website provides all the information required to register and operate an account as a carpool member. The local requirements that apply to Individual car pool sites are easily accomodated by the ability for the Carpool manager to customise not only the content on the site, but the options offered to the patrons, and the text of the messages generated by the matching process. These are all available to the carpool manager by logging in through the Administration backend portal.
What the carpooler owner & manager need to know
In addition to a good knowledge of the carpool patron's interface, the carpool administrator needs to understand how to configure the site and customise the standard content to the specific needs of their own carpool. Prosentient staff will take the carpool manager through these functions as part of setting up the site. Once a carpool site has been configured to requirements it is rare that these options will need to be revisited but, if they do, Prosentient is available to advise the carpool manager as part of ongoing support.
Before the car pool goes live, Prosentient will ensure that clients understand the privacy implications of running an online database and the best practice measures to follow to keep it secure.
In terms of ongoing administration, the main application-related tasks for the carpool manager are likely to be:
- ensure that they are easily contactable by patrons at all times
- manually overide self-registration or deregistration if requested
- generate statistical reports from the database for management
- set up special event destinations as required
- make the odd adjustment to the location data for the catchment
- liaise with Prosentient regarding any technical issues
The body of knowledge required by the carpool owner and manager is documented in the Carpool Application Manual maintained in an online wiki.