Our Troop currently uses Troopmaster. What are the pros and cons of Troopmaster vs Scoutbook?
Our troop moved from Troopmaster to Scoutbook about five years ago. I was not the one who knew the ins and outs of Troopmaster but the biggest advantage was not having it locked up with one person. Any of us can now pull reports and enter items to be tracked (requirements, MBs, overnights, hikes, service). We can enter it immediately after meeting with the Scout. I personally like the visual component to the rank progress and thought that it would be more motivating to the Scouts, but in reality they have been slow to get on board. Parents and adult leaders use it well. Our Advancement coordinators love it. I still feel like we made the right decision and love having the calendar and reminders, but I do still have a wish list (attachments on the calendar events please!)
My Troop has used Troopmaster for 20+ years. We recently upgraded this summer to TM Web 2.0 As a long term TM user, I was disappointed in some of the detailed reports in previous versions, not being available, or not able to output in multiple formats. For example, we use to be able to chose reports in RTF, PDF, TXT, or CSV formats. In the new TM2.0, PDF is the standard for all reports, with only a few reports available with an optional CSV output. We have complained and TSI (Troopmaster Software Inc) generally listens and then says they will consider adding back previous features IF they get enough users complaining. Typically, we now have to reverse engineer the PDF reports to TXT and/or CSV. This is a pain, but the only real annoyance. TM Web 2.0 is otherwise really great. Multiple leaders can access the data base which is via web interface. One of our 1st year program leaders enters the lower rank achievements. Another advancement processor, does the non-1st year ranks and badges. Even though the output is more limited, TM is far superior to Scoutbook (SB) in the amount of reports. There is less “fluff” in TM and in my opinion, easier to use and more reliable. I also like that I can call one number, and immediately talk to a human or the president of the company, who frequently answers tech support calls. The output of advancement data to a file that can be sucked up into the BSA Internet Advancement 2.0 system works great. I also like how I can dump most (but not all) of my Scout or Leader data to CSV for further use in Excel or Google Sheets. SB will absolutely not allow me to dump data easily. This is a HUGE issue with us. It’s OUR data, and refusing to make it easy to get to, is simply asinine. TM also has visual graphs for Scout progress, so that’s pretty much a balance when compared with SB. TM offers a wide variety of security. You can give parents access to their Scout’s data, although we really don’t have a lot of parents wanting that option.
I also feel Scoutbook has made a lot of progress, but they have a LONG way to go to match the useful ness of TM. If you are use to TM, my recommendation is that you stick with it. SB may be free, but you get what you pay for.
Which data are you trying to download?
All of it, in one full CSV format
We have been told that Troopmaster no longer exports much of the data it contains, including partial award completion. Is this not true?
It’s more than one CSV file, but a Troop Admin can Export / Backup different data into CSV files.
- Scout info.
- Scout advancement
- Leaders & Parents info.
- payment logs
I also am a long time user of TM. the question of using scoutbook vs troopmaster did come up in our unit (whenever “free” vs “fee” there is always question. I have compared the features and 100% prefer TM over SB. and TM web 2.0 seems to be improving all the time. Simply having control on our units data is a huge plus for me. The cherry on to is the automatic awards tracking features of TM. While the Advancement chair was preparing for our last CofH he discovered several boys has earned National Outdoors Awards which normally would have been overlooked. The new reporting is very similar now to the old desktop version. I also use the TM mobile app for in the field checks and updates. our parents have access to their scouts, you can mass email your members, and more. I feel TM is way far superior to SB. Even for the cost.
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