Creating a Service or Event

Once you are registered as a Provider you will have access to your dashboard, this is where you control and manage your content including services and events.

To edit your Provider Details use the 'provider section'. Please note only the Primary Administrator has permission to change the provider details, this is usually the person who registered first.

To create a new service:

From your dashboard select the Manage Services button.

Then select the Create a Service button.

You will need to complete a series of information fields, those marked with a red asterix are mandatory, you will not be able to create a service if these are blank or contain errors. Directory users will be mainly searching for the services that you provide.

Please provide as much information as you can, you will find explanatory text to assist you next to the fields

Completing the Fields

Title:

This is the name you have given to your service, activity, group or club. It is not related to your personal name or admin login

Description:

Here you can describe in detail what it is you are offering, this is the main body of information that is displayed to the public.

When completing this field you may want to include:

  • What you do

  • Where you do it

  • How you do it

  • How often

  • Specify days and times and

  • Any costs or conditions that may apply

You have up to 3000 characters to describe what you do, however we would recommend that you use or adapt your existing promotional materials, this will help you to have a consistent message for your service and keep it brief and relevant to the public.

Please include and be clear on any and all monetary costs for your services/events where relevant

Markdown Text Styling:

You can style your text using the Markdown system. This is a series of symbols you add to the plain text to enhance how it is displayed.

Simply use the symbols as shown to display your text in bold, italics and create hyperlinks to websites.

The most common symbols are shown below the field to assist you. More detailed information on how to use Markdown is available in a help window or the SIGN directory team will be happy to assist. You can review your service to see how it looks before publishing and edit your entry at any time.

Telephone:

Please use your main contact number for the public to get in touch with your organisation or service. Please select a number that is regularly monitored.

E-mail

Please use your main e-mail address for the public to contact your organisation or service, please also select one that is regularly monitored.

Selecting a category

Users of the Directory have the option to search for services by category.

You can place your service into a number of Categories that you feel match your activity.

Each main category will open up a number of sub categories, simply select the 'tick box's' to associate your service with the required category and Directory users will be able to find you in their search.

You can select as many categories that you feel are relevant to your service.

Service Tags

You can create service 'tags' that will become keywords used by the public when they are searching for your services and events.

For example a Money Advisory Service may want to use tags such as:-

Money Advice, Debt, Bankrupt, DRO, Debt Relief, Cash, Advice, Poor, Struggling, Budget, Help, Assistance, Credit, Money Worries......etc

Please type your 'tag' word into the field. Tags that have been previously created and used will be available for selection in a drop down box, however if a tag you want is not there, you can create your own.

Simply type in your tag by free text and select Create tag

Please keep your tags brief and restricted to one or two words and avoid complex phrases or sentences.

You will also want to think about how the public might search for your services and create appropriate tags in language they may use.

If your service is free then please use free as a tag, also if your service is delivered on specific days please tag it with the day/s

Tags and keywords are displayed on the public site and also appear in the Index

Address

Use the postcode search to find your main delivery location. After you enter a postcode you will be able to select your address from an additional drop down list that will appear.

Map

You can use the map to place a marker in a specific area of delivery. You can find and pin your main delivery site or outreach location or be more specific, for example an exercise group may meet in a local park by a pond, you can show this location on the map.

Directory users will be able to search for services using the map, so it is important to pin your delivery locations.

Once you have completed all of your information use the Save button to create your service.

please note that on occasion, when saving you may see a system message advising you of a problem and to wait a few moments and try again. If this occurs please keep selecting the save button until the action is complete

Publishing

After you have created and saved your entry you will need to submit your services and events for approval and public display, please select the Publish button at the top of the page. You will see an information box to check you are ready to display your entry publicly. You can also un-publish information and remove it from public view if necessary.

Please note if your are creating a service or event directly in the system and this takes longer than 20 minutes you may lose your information due to being timed out. We would therefore recommend you complete mandatory fields and then save regularly or pre-prepare your entry beforehand.

Editing

Once saved, you can edit your information at any time and have the option to view how it is displayed before publishing. After editing any information you will need to provide a brief description or reason for the the change before you are able to save it.

Service coverage

The system is set up to recognise local Wards rather than towns or areas include as many wards as you need to in order to demonstrate your service coverage.

Creating An Event

The process for creating an event is similar to creating a service. You cannot create an event without attaching it to a service.

From your dashboard select the Manage Events button.

Then select the Create an Event button.

Complete the Fields as directed using the guidance above

You will need to specify which service your event is related to, you will be able to select this from a drop down list of your current services

You will also need to specify a start date and start time and an end date and end time for the event

Events will automatically be withdrawn from public view once they expire.

As with services you will need to Save and Publish your event and can edit your event at any time.

Your Services and Events will be reviewed by the SIGN Directory team before being displayed to the public.

Should I create Services Or Events?

All providers should ideally have at least one service, this is how the public and professionals will find out about what you do.

When creating services the system allows you to set up all the required elements for you to be searched for, these options are not available solely as a provider. You must have created a Service to create an Event as they are linked together.

Events can generally be considered to be short term one off occasions, for example an open day, a family fun day or a book signing. Events can also be longer for example a week to raise awareness of a particular issue such as dementia awareness week or carers' week or the launch of a new service. Events can also be specifically reflective of your service and what you regularly offer.

You can choose how you utilise the directory in order to best represent what you offer to the public.

You could create a SERVICE (or services) to tell people about all things you regularly provide and contain all the relevant information in these entries.

You could also create separate or ongoing EVENTS to represent your service.

For example:

Your service might be an art class that is available on a Monday, Wednesday, and Friday at different times and locations all of which are shown in your service entry for the reader.

You have the additional option to create 3 separate events for each day, time and location.

When events are created they are displayed to the public in date order on the home screen, events are more prominently displayed than services and the public can see at a glance what is on that day or in the near future.

System maintenance and actions

What if I have forgotten my password?

If you forget the password that you have set up on registration, then you can request to set up a new password.

From the sign in screen select I need to reset a password

You will then be directed to a screen where you can create a new password linked to your e-mail sign in.

Content Reviews

It is important that the Directory is as up to date and accurate as possible for users. As a provider, you will receive a 'content review' by e-mail every 90 days.

You will receive a reminder for each service you have listed in the directory. Please look at the service and check that the content is accurate and up to date, if you need to change any information contained in your entry, you can edit the details from your dashboard.

Contacting Providers

In order to help you to get the best out of the SIGN Directory we may contact you periodically to offer suggestions or tips. We offer to support you in how best to represent your organisations or group and keep you up to date with new functions and development of SIGN.

Further Help

If you cannot find what you are looking for in this guide and need further assistance please contact us at sign@northtyneside.gov.uk.