Getting Started Guide

Table of Contents


Logging In

When a campaign adds you as a user, an email is sent from the service to your email address with your login information including the address of the login page, your user name, and a temporary password. Some email service providers may flag this email as spam so be sure to check your spam or bulk mail folders if you do not see it in your inbox. Follow the link to login and enter your user name and temporary password.

You will then be prompted to change your password. Follow the instructions on the page to create a secure password. Passwords are stored in the database and protected by encryption.

The Auto-login option can be used to prevent having to login to webElect.net from this computer in the future (do not select this option until after your first login and you have changed your password). You should never select this option if the computer you are using is accessible to others. Once you have selected the Auto-login option, you will have to click "Log Off" and then click the "Turn Off Auto-login" to force the login process again.

After logging in, you will be presented with a list of campaigns that your user account has been granted access to. Any campaign that has has a current subscription with which your user account has not been expired will display as a click-able link. If this is your first time accessing a particular campaign, they may have added an additional security check that requires you to enter a "Lock Code". The lock code would have been given to you personally by the campaign administrator when they set up your account. The Lock code only needs to be entered on your first access. Click the link for the campaign you want to work in.


Administration

Administration options are only available to select users that act as administrators for the campaign dataset.

Set Campaign Info

Administrators accessing a newly created campaign will need to set/verify the campaign information. This information is used for various features in webElect.net such as finance reporting, walk lists, petition and absentee request forms.

Click the "Campaign Setup" link in the Administration section of the Main Menu to access this information.

Create Users

Users in a campaign can be administered by clicking the "Users" link in the Administration section of the Main Menu. To add additional users, click the "Add New" link at the top of the Users page and follow the directions provided on the page. User access is determined by email addresses. If the person you are adding has never used webElect.net, they will receive an email with their login information and the Getting Started link. If the person you are adding has used webElect.net, they will receive an email notifying them of their addition to your campaign and your campaign will show up in their list of campaign choices.

User access and permissions are set by selecting one of five user levels, ranging from "Level 1 - Restricted" to "Level 9 - Administrator". You can set these for individual users by clicking "Users" on the Main Menu and then "Edit" in the action column next to the name of the user. For more information, see our User Levels page.


Look-up Voter Info

To pull up individual voter registration information, use the search bar at the top of the Main Menu. Enter the voters' name in the format "last, first". Note you only need to enter as much of their name as you think will narrow your results significantly. For instance, Albert Einstein would be easily located by simply typing "Eins", where as Jacquelyn Smith may require "Smith, Jacq". Also note that in most browsers you can simply hit the "Enter" key after typing the name and do not need to click the "Go" button.

This will search all voters in your campaign's district. Each result record has a list of icons underneath it indicating different types of information attached to that record. The voter registration information is identified by the 2nd icon. If the icon is bright, this person has a voter registration record which can be viewed by clicking on that icon.


Targeting Voters, Voter Lists, Labels, Etc.

Voter lists are pulled from the database using the "Query/Targeting" link in the Voter Info section of the Main Menu. On the Target Voters page, you can see a list of targeting techniques with descriptions and links to detailed instructions on how to effectively use them. These techniques include, basic targets, complex targets with multiple parameters, using precinct analysis, and querying within absentee ballot data. Demonstration videos can also found on our webElect Videos page.

The final step of the targeting process allows you to select several different output formats including (but not limited to):

  • Export all voters or by household (including phone numbers and/or email addresses)
  • Walk lists for going door-to-door
  • Mailing labels for all voters or by household (uses Avery 5260 style labels)
  • Pre-filled petition forms to gain ballot access

Visit our printing instructions page for information on how to print pre-filled forms such as ballot access petitions or absentee request forms.


Walk/Canvassing

Walk list creation first begins with the Query/Targeting process. Then there are 3 options for creating walk lists.

The first option is called "Action Lists". Action Lists allow you to save a target selection as a Walk Project and stores all progress as you create packets in Google Maps and walk the houses. Walk Projects power the mobile walk app (the "Google Maps Integration" Add-on must be purchased for this to work). Once your list is created and saved, you can plot it to Google Maps at any time to create packets. To see details of this process, watch the demonstration video on our webElect videos page. The packets can be then be printed or accessed in the Walk App.

The second option is called "Quick Plot to Google Maps". Use this if you only need PDF/printed packets and do not need the saving features provided by Action Lists. This will plot the target to Google Maps and allow you to select markers to create PDF packets only. This will not work with the app and will not save progress in a Walk Project like the Action Lists option.

The third option is called "Print Walk Packet" and simply lists all targeted voters by alphabetical street order in a downloadable PDF file for you to print. This is not recommended if you have more than one group walking since you will have to manually determine which streets to group together into a packet.

Once you have decided on your option, click "Run Report" to continue. Then use the Walk/Canvassing Module to canvass, input data, and track progress.

Entering Walk Packet Results

There are several ways to enter results from your walk packets. Using the webElect App allows you to enter data on your smartphone/device as you walk! Visit our Mobile App Instructions page for more information on downloading and setting up the App, and visit Canvassing with the Mobile App for how to use the App when knocking doors. If using printed walk packets, then you have two different options to enter your data:

1. Use our new "Enter Packet Results" option to easily enter results directly on the computer, no barcodes or scanner required! To do this, click "Walk/Canvassing" on the Main Menu. Find the appropriate Walk Target and click "Packets" under the Actions column. To the right of your desired Packet, next to the Packet ID, click the survey icon. This brings up a digital version of your printed packet right on your screen. Simply click on the star next to each group you want to tag a voter with. (For example, click the star next to Support under a voter's name to tag them as a supporter and add them into the group "Tracking: Support".) To add a sign request, click the voter's name, then hit "Outreach" on the page that opens, and click the "+" next to Signs. When finished with a household, click the check box next to an address to mark it "Complete" with a green check mark.

You can also reach the same page to enter packet results by clicking "Enter Walk Packet Results here" above your list of Walk Targets in Walk/Canvassing. Enter the walk packet ID in the search bar on the left side of the screen. You can find the Packet ID number at the top of your printed packet or by clicking the "Packets" button for your corresponding Walk Target.

Note: In order to see groups listed in the digital version of your packet for entering results, make sure you added the groups you want by going into the "Walk Target: Edit" page and using the drop down menu under "Group Tracking/Mobile App Groups". If you do not do this, you won't see any groups to "star" in the digital packet. (You could still add voters to a group by clicking on their name and then going to the group section of their file, but this is much less efficient.)

2. Use a barcode scanner to assign voters to a group. To do this, click "Walk/Canvassing" on the Main Menu. Find the appropriate Walk Target and click "Barcode" under the Actions column. Scan the barcodes on your walk packet next to the voters' names and select the group(s) to add them to. OR click "Groups" under the Actions column and scan all those voters who you wish to place in that group. (For example, scan anyone you recorded as a supporter into the group "Tracking: Support".)

Note: Make sure that you have configured your scanner correctly (details in the following section) and that your walk packet was printed with barcodes per voter as opposed to ID numbers (this can be changed on the walk-packet edit screen before you get the PDF packet.)

Configure BarCode Scanner

Barcode scanners come with different configuration options. In order to use a barcode scanner efficiently with webElect.net, you'll want to configure the following options:

  1. Carriage Return + Line Feed after each scan
  2. Enable Interleaved 2 of 5 of any length bar codes

We provide scan sheets and more information on how to configure the Symbol LS-2208 here.

If you're canvassing for petition signatures, visit our printing instructions page for information on how to print pre-filled forms such as ballot access petitions or absentee request forms.


Sign Delivery Module

The Sign Delivery Module can be used in conjunction with the Walk/Canvassing Module, giving you an efficient way to record sign requests, make a sign list for distribution, and then mark requests as "complete" once a sign has been delivered. Sign requests can be entered either through the Mobile App while canvassing or by going into the Outreach section of a voter's webElect record. For a complete description of the Sign Delivery Module, including a how-to video and step-by-step instructions, please click here.


Add Contacts

webElect refers to records you create for a person or an organization as a "contact". The voter information is a different kind of record from the contact record. A voter record can have a contact record attached to it allowing your campaign to provide additional information on a voter that is exclusive to your campaign. Search results in webElect show both contact records and voter records allowing a seamless search process.

Before you add a contact you should always perform a search on the name to make sure they are not already in your database as an existing contact or voter.

If they are found, the first icon under their name represents the contact record information. If the icon is dim they do not have a contact record and are only in your database as a voter. Click the icon to create a contact record for this voter.

If they are not found, click the "Add New Contact" icon at the top of the page and complete the contact form. After clicking "Save" you will see the header display the contact name and address and provide the icons allowing you to access the other parts of this person's record.

Merging Voter Records and/or Contact Records (new interface only)

Merging voter and contact records gives you the ability to eliminate duplicate records without losing any information and to keep all your data on a voter in one location. If, for example, you create a contact record for a donor or supporter, and then realize they already have a voter file in your data-set, you can merge these into one record.

To merge records, search for the name using the voter search bar on the Main Menu. You'll see both records listed but not linked. Click the checkbox to the left of each name and you should see the selection count in the upper right change to "2". Click on it and select "Merge Records". This will then show you a contact form with each possible field completed and the various options from each record for you to choose the value you want to keep for each field. Once done click "Save" and it will merge the two records into a single one, along with all groups, notes, walk data, etc.


Track Voters and Contacts with Groups

This feature provides a campaign with the ability to track voters and contacts by adding them to groups. For example, voters who support, oppose, or are undecided in their preference toward a candidate can be labeled as such. The webElect platform comes pre-loaded with several group names, but you also have the ability to create your own, making the opportunities for voter segmentation and targeting virtually limitless. Visit the Group Management page for more information about this feature.



Importing Data

There are three main reasons campaigns import data to webElect:

  1. Tag voters into Groups based on external lists. For example, placing voters into Support/Oppose groups based on results exported from a VoIP system, or tagging voters from a 3rd party membership list to use for micro-targeting.
  2. Add phone numbers or email addresses obtained from other sources.
  3. Import other types of contact lists. For example, import the name and addresses of donors from a previous campaign so they do not need to be hand entered.

For more information, visit our Importing Data page.


Finance

The finance tools give you the ability to track and record contributions and expenses, in addition to automating the process involved with preparing the state mandated periodic campaign finance reports.

Bank Accounts

The first step in utilizing the finance features provided by webElect is to set up your bank accounts. Click on "Bank Accounts" under the Finance section on the main menu. This brings you to your bank accounts page where any account you set up will be displayed, along with its balance and options to edit the account or view its check register (more on that soon). webElect comes pre-populated with several accounts already established. You can edit or rename these accounts as necessary. To create a new account, simply click "Add New", fill in the required information, and hit "Save".

Enter Contributions

Entering contributions begins with locating or creating the contact record this contribution is from. This keeps all contributions organized per person or organization and makes sure you do not exceed any contribution limits.

  1. Perform a search at the top of the Main Menu using the person or organization's name. This makes sure you do not create a duplicate contact record.
  2. If the contact is not found, click the "Add Contacts" button, complete the form, and click "Save". See Add Contacts for more info.
  3. Click the Green Dollar sign icon under the contact's search result (or under their name in the header for a newly added contact from the previous step).
  4. If this is NOT the first contribution received from this contact, you will see a list of previous contributions. Review the list to make sure this contribution was not previously entered and/or to review the contribution history of this contact. To proceed, click the "Add New" button at the top.
  5. You will now see the new contribution form. It should be pre-populated with the contact record's info for the name and address, but this info can be modified independently of the contact record and will be used only for the reporting of this specific contribution. So if a check uses a nickname or different address then what you want to store for this contact, you can modify it for this contribution without it modifying the linked contact record.
  6. Follow the guidelines in the Florida Campaign Finance Handbook for completing the fields. All Bold fields are required for the state reporting purposes. Non-Bold fields are additional fields for webElect specific optional functionality.
  7. After clicking "Save", you will see a "Secondary Contact" search box. This will allow you to attach additional contacts to the contribution for internal reporting purposes. This is useful for keeping track of who is responsible for collecting the contributions, much like a salesman could be linked to a traditional sales transaction.
  8. Repeat this process for each contribution you need to enter.

Deposit Contributions

webElect.net provides a simple check register feature which gives a campaign basic internal accounting functionality. After entering contributions, webElect stores these as "Undeposited" funds. To create the deposit for your bank:

  1. Click the "Deposit Contributions" link on the Main Menu. This will show a list of all undeposited funds with a checkbox next to each one.
  2. Keep only the transactions checked that you will be depositing together. You may check and uncheck all using the checkbox at the top of the column.
  3. On the top of the form, select the checking account you will be depositing to.
  4. Set the date to the date you will make the deposit.
  5. Click "Print & Save Deposit". This will mark those transactions as deposited and print a deposit report with a copy for your bank and a copy for your records.

You can verify the deposit by clicking "Bank Accounts" on the Main Menu, then clicking the account you made the deposit to. This will show the simple register and the deposit transaction will appear with the date you set the deposit.

Enter Expenses

Expenses work nearly identical to contributions with the exception that the icon is the Red Dollar sign. Each individual expense immediately shows up in the simple account register since they are made directly from the account.

You are now required to report details of reimbursed expenses made by 3rd parties. Please see the Reimbursement Transaction Entry Instructions for more information.

View Check Register

For internal accounting purposes, webElect provides a Check Register for every corresponding bank account you establish. To view this, click "Bank Accounts" in the Finance section on the main menu, and then select "Register" under the action column for the account you wish to view. Your page will now display each check you have entered that corresponds to this specific account, the date of that check, whether it was a payment or a contribution, whether the check has cleared or not (editable by the user), and how that check affects the balance in the account.

Submitting Periodic Reports

In order to help vastly increase the ease and efficiency of your campaign's finance tracking, webElect provides an automated generation of the state required periodic finance reports. To generate these reports, click on "State Reporting" in the Finance section on the main menu. Select the period you want to see by using the drop down menu under "State Reporting Dates" and then choose whether you wish to simply view the report, export the file in spreadsheet format, or actually create and file your official finance report to the Department of Elections.

For more detailed instructions on how to use the State Reporting tool, please visit State Finance Reporting Instructions.



Fundraising

The contribution query tool allows you to search for and filter contributions filed with the Florida Division of Elections since the 2006 election cycle by recipient and donor criteria. For more information on how to use this tool and all its features, visit the Contribution Query Tool page.


Mobile App

Our mobile app is technically a WebApp, meaning that it does not need to be downloaded from an app store like the Apple Store or Google Play. Instead, it runs on your internet browser. Simply go to ios.webelect.net on an iphone or android.webelect.net on an android phone. The app requires you to provide the server generated App PIN code to link to your user account. You can find that by logging into webElect and clicking the "Change Info/Password" link on the Main Menu.

For more detailed instructions on how to setup your webElect App and for troubleshooting tips, visit Mobile App Setup Instructions. For information on how to use the App when knocking doors, visit Canvassing with the Mobile App.


Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Do you have a question that our Getting Started Guide hasn't answered? Look through our FAQ and if you still can't find the answer, contact support@webelect.net.


How-to Videos

Is it easier for you to follow a how-to video rather than reading written explanations? Don't worry, we've got you covered! Visit our webElect Videos page for a list of all of our how-to videos, organized by topic.



Terms of Service and Privacy Policy

webElect is committed to providing excellent service built on integrity and transparency. By using webElect, you agree to legal terms allowing us to provide you with that service. Read our full Terms of Service.

We recognize the importance of privacy. webElect will never disclose its clients, client conversations, or any client data without the written consent of the client. Read our full Privacy Policy.


Last updated by Jake Friedman, created November 3, 2015