Can XenForo help setting up a General Contracors Network with lead Notification

The CGroup Network project involves setting up a Web based platform that allows for (a) communication, (b) networking, and (b) construction project leads with email alerts.

The idea is to use a forum software as the main platform with custom modifications necessary to meet the CGroup Network project vision and objectives. Being that 70% of xenForo core features probably does most of this anyway The Cruikshank Group is seeking technical knowledge of the xenForo core features in order to determine how much modification needs to be done to create the following:

Structure and Organization of Forums

Sub-forums will be created for each construction category. Within each category new topics (for job leads) can be created by admins. It is these job leads (when created) that cause email alerts to be sent to contractors assigned to the construction category. Regions can be noted in the topic *title* and/or descriptive text in order to make them searchable.

Phase I
  • Contractor assignment to category - Can an *Admin* user assign a contractor to one or more construction categories.
  • Private sub-forums for contractors - When a contractor is assigned to a construction category, they are then able to see those construction categories (stored as "sub-forums" on the website). Guest or members who are not assigned to contractor categories (by the admin) cannot see these job leads.
  • Job leads alerts - A contractor who is assigned to a particular construction category, will receive email alerts whenever a new job lead is posted in a matching category.
  • Job leads summary by email - When a job lead is added to XenForo, the alerts sent to eligible contractors shall include a full text copy of the information posted on the website.
  • New job leads support file attachments (PDF) - When the admin creates a new job lead topic, they must be able to attach files.
Note: In Phase I, the site managers intend to enter job leads manually.

Phase I B
  • Reply to job lead alerts by email - When contractors receive a job alert, they can reply directly to the email. Their text will be posted on the website, in the appropriate topic (for the job lead).
  • Private Sub-forums for VIPs only -Can we create private team forums
  • Assign region and job size to contractors - Contractors can limit their job lead alerts to jobs within their desired region and job size. Settings are on the profile page for the contractor (Admin only editing).
  • Specify region and job size when posting new job leads - Admins when posting job leads can assign the region and job size in separate fields.
  • Specify region and job size in search criteria - When doing an advanced search on XenForo, the contractor can specify the region(s) and job size to look for job leads that are more targeted.
Phase II

Phase II involves automated job lead discovery and posting to the website. Could a filter be design to create bots to go to various web pages collect job leads and bring back to to forum and post in proper category.
Phase III

Phase III involves tracking usage metrics. Data collected from usage patterns of contractors and other visitors to the website can be stored and as intelligence data to better customize or target the user experience, generate reports, and provide valuable information to stakeholders.

Any information on XenForo core features and ideas to develop this network would be greatly welcomed.


XenForo developer
Staff member
The vast majority of this would require custom modifications. You should be able to use user groups and our permission system to create the general setup you want (contractors and VIPs). Posts can have attachments already, so that's easy enough.

The job lead emails and related functionality would have to be custom created at this point. Specifying other fields with threads would also require custom coding, though how much depends on approaches.
How user friendly is the software? I am not a coder and would not be able to manage to much of the technical aspects. I have seen demos of Vbulliten and to do the simplest of things you have to basically be a programmer to know how to get started. I had talked to a guy in this arena and he told me that the problem with these softwares are that they are built for the programmers not for someone like myself that has a basic knowledge and limited ability to do the functions like placing ads, changing the fonts, and stuff of that nature. Are they simple or are they somewhat demanding?


XenForo developer
Staff member
We've designed it to be user friendly, though a lot of the functionality you want simply isn't in XF so you will need custom code at some point. Unfortunately, I'm not really going to be the ideal testimonial towards overall user friendliness, so someone else will probably have to jump in. :)