Tag Archives: WizeHive

Echoing Green Awards Early-Stage Social Entrepreneurs Using WizeHive [Video]

For more than 25 years, Echoing Green has been running a fellowship application process to identify the world’s most promising, adventurous, early-stage social entrepreneurs emerging in fields including leadership, education, healthcare, and farming.   More than 3,000 applications come pouring in each year from more than 100 countries competing for the 28 spots on Echoing Green’s roster, resulting in less than a 1% acceptance rate. The fellowship awards each of the recipients with money and participation in a two year leadership development program.

We recently had the opportunity to speak with VP of Fellowship Programs, Rich Leimsider, to learn about the trials and tribulations of their older antiquated system, implementing WizeHive to take it’s place, and even seeing competitors begin to copy that model (view clips from our conversation below).

Out With the Old

As their program grew, and Echoing Green saw application inflow substantially increase year after year, they initially decided to invest tens of thousands of dollars into building their own proprietary online application system. “It was incredibly customized, it was incredibly complicated, and it was a total disaster,” stated Leimsider. “The previous year it had actually stopped working twelve hours before our deadline and we had to have hundreds of phone calls and apologetic conversations, so I knew I didn’t want to deal with that again.” They threw out this system with the hopes of trading it for a new, better solution. But the question was, what exactly could be tailored to meet their needs?

Rich and his team were looking for a solution that would solve the problems that plaqued their old system. “We needed a system that allowed hundreds of application reviewers to connect to thousands of applications, and that’s what we were looking for when we found WizeHive.”

“Within probably six weeks, we had an operational system up online, and as it turned out that year we went from a  thousand applications to two thousand five hundred – never had any downtime, the system was robust, it handled everything we needed it to do,” said Rich. Now that this system was set up, it was time to put it to the test.

The Application Process

With an applicant pool of nearly 3,000, it is quite an undertaking to read, review, and judge them all in a limited period of time.   To narrow the original pool of applicants down to about 300 semifinalists, each application is reviewed at least three times; which equates to about 10,000 reads.   That’s a lot of reads, but to take it even one step further, Rich pointed out that, “even if you spend five minutes reading each application, that’s almost 1000 hours of staff time, and we try to do that in two to three weeks, right after we receive that first round of applications.”

Each semifinalist application then gets reviewed at least ten more times. In total, over 300 volunteer readers and reviewers work to narrow down what began as 3,000 application to the final 28 fellowship awardees.

Going Above & Beyond

After a successful implementation of WizeHive, Echoing Green was able to integrate other features that they had never used before.  “We’ve also been able to add features and do some new things that we hadn’t done previously,” said Rich. “The system integrates uploaded video really well, and so for the past couple of years we’ve been able to have hundreds of our applicants upload short videos of themselves, and integrate that right into the judging and the review process, which has been really wonderful, and actually kind of transformative for us.”

Not only does WizeHive allow for the addition of new features and capabilities to be implemented within a program, but it is also user-friendly to the extent that just about anyone can learn to use it quickly. “What’s great about the system is that even a new person can come on board, figure it out really quickly, and help us get started – make edits to the way the application works, make changes to the reviewing form, and also update different features and attributes for the various readers.”

Tremendous Support

When you join the WizeHive family, you aren’t just a client. “We’ve known some of the same people  at WizeHive for almost four years now.”  You get to know your implementation specialist and build a relationship with them. They learn all about your program, and are there to help every step of the way.  Rich had only nice things to say about the group he works with at WizeHive. “We haven’t really had downtime or crashes, but we have almost every year figured out that there were things we didn’t know we needed until we really needed them very quickly and very urgently. Every time we’ve been able to get right on the phone… to help figure out how to solve the problem.”

The Most Sincere Form of Flattery

When your competitors start to imitate you, you know you must be doing something right. That’s exactly what Rich saw among some of Echoing Green’s competition.  “We’re sort of in this field of supporting social entrepreneurs, these kind of early stage enterprises, and I’ve recommended WizeHive directly probably half a dozen times, but what’s particularly fun is when we start to see our competitors in the field also show up using the WizeHive product.”


A special thanks to Rich for taking the time to speak with us. To learn more about Echoing Green, visit their website at echoinggreen.org

Building Complex Forms in WizeHive Just Got Faster and Easier!

WizeHive offers hundreds of great features and capabilities when it comes to building out application forms (i.e. letters of recommendation to creating eligibility quizzes).  Our form building tools help our customers quickly and easily build great application and web forms so that they can collect the information they need to make informed decisions as part of their grant, scholarship and awards processes.  WizeHive’s new subform builder is one of the great new features that gives our customers something to cheer about!

One aggravating limitation of form builders on the market today (including WizeHive’s until just recently) is that they make it difficult and time consuming to replicate repeating groups of fields in an application or web form.  For instance, if you are asking an applicant to provide their work history (i.e. for a grant) you will want to collect start date, end date, and employer name for each of the jobs they’ve had.  Until recently, the form builder tool in WizeHive required you to create a lengthy form to accommodate a large number of repeating data sets.

Building lengthy forms to solve the “repeating data set” problem is now a thing of the past! WizeHive just released a new feature called subforms.  Subforms allow you to embed a smaller form into the parent application form.  For example, you can create a “work history” form (a WizeHive subform) which contains start date, end date, and employer name.  The “work history” form is then be embedded into the parent application form.  The result is that an applicant can provide work history simply by repeatedly filling out the same information for each of his or her employers.

subform

Subforms are built as webforms and are easy to do. Like other forms within WizeHive, subforms can be styled using CSS. They can be vertically integrated, with the fields going from top to bottom as originally laid out; or can be set so each field becomes a row and appears within your main form as a grid or table.  An example of grid configuration can be seen above.

If you have any questions or would like to learn more about adding subforms, contact support@wizehive.com.  As always, stay posted to The Hive and follow WizeHive on Twitter (@wizehive) for more news on features, customer stories, and more!