Grow your knowledge

ECHO offers training and education opportunities to service providers, including training pathways to become a partner in the Homeless Management Information System (HMIS), a Coordinated Assessment (CA) provider, and a SOAR (SSI/SSDI Outreach, Access, and Recovery) case manager. We also provide free webinar-style training opportunities on a variety of topics in our Community Training Series, recorded versions of which are available below.

HMIS Training

If your organization doesn’t currently use HMIS but would like to, the first step is to fill out the Partner With Us form. The right ECHO staff member will reach out to you with more information and next steps for your individual situation.


Note: Community Services was formerly called ServicePoint.

  • Register for Training

    • New User

      If you are a new user at an agency that already uses HMIS, you will be required to attend a new user training as well as complete some additional agency specific training before you get started. New User Training is designed for staff members who will need to start using Community Services. This training is required of all new Community Services users before access to the protected Community Services website. This training will cover history, importance of data, ethics, and basic Community Services overview. Once this New User training is complete new users will be required to complete their agency specific training as well.

      Register (Current Agency Admin only)

      The first half of HMIS New User Training is completed within our Learning Management System (LMS). There will be about nine training videos to view, and that part is self-paced. After the new user completes the first part, our HMIS Training Manager will reach out to schedule them for data entry training with our trainer via Zoom. We will use the information within the training registration form to set users up within the LMS. The LMS link and username/password will be sent to the user with directions on how to use the system. Once a user has completed both portions of the training, our Training Manager offers HMIS Office Hours for users to attend if they have questions or want to dive deeper into HMIS.

      We’ll need to train one person from your organization as an Agency Admin (see below). The Admin is responsible for registering all future staff for HMIS training. Please let us know who the best staff member would be to be trained for that role. 

    • Agency Admin

      Agency Admin training is required of all current or new Community Services users who are stepping up into the role of Agency Administrator. The Agency Admin at each agency is our point of contact for Community Services and is required to submit certain reports to our HMIS team each month, train new users in agency specific Community Services workflow, and attend an HMIS workgroup meeting on the third Friday of every month. The Agency Admin must go through a New User training prior to completing an Agency Admin training. If you have any questions in regards to becoming an Agency Admin, please fill out a Helpdesk ticket and out HMIS support team will get back with you.

      Register (Current Agency Admin only)

      Additional training dates will be added as necessary when a new Agency Admin comes on board.

    • Business Objects (BO)

      The purpose of BO Training is to learn how to run reports using the Advanced Reporting Tool that is linked to our HMIS system, Community Services. Training dates will be added as necessary when a new Agency Admin comes on board or someone gets a BO license.

      Register (Agency Admin only)

  • Training Calendar

    ECHO’s HMIS Team offers regular training opportunities, as well as HMIS Office Hours to answer any questions. Please see the calendar below for the next available opportunities.


  • Current HMIS Agencies

    This section is for new users at organizations that already use HMIS. If you’re the first person at your organization to use HMIS, please see the New HMIS Agencies section below.

  • New HMIS Agencies

    This section is for users at organizations that are new to HMIS. If your organization already uses HMIS, please see the Current HMIS Agencies section above.

    The first step to joining HMIS is to complete the Partner With Us form linked below.

    • Next Steps

      After you complete the form, the appropriate ECHO staff member will meet with you to discuss your organization and begin moving forward with HMIS. After that initial meeting, these are the steps that will follow:

      Step 1: Once the HMIS MOU is signed, we will ask that you complete the HMIS Project Set-Up Request Form. This form will help us to create your organization within HMIS.

      Step 2: Please complete the Project Set-up Request Form to the best of your ability. If you’re unsure about something, don’t worry about it. We will follow up if we need that information.

      Step 3: Please complete the training registration form with the link for you and any other staff who need HMIS training. Once we receive that, we can get everyone connected with the first part of training. The first portion is within our Learning Management System (LMS). Once the LMS portion is complete, we will register you/your staff for the data entry portion.

  • HMIS Training Guides

CA & SOAR Training

  • CA Training

    ECHO requires a progression of skills, comfort, and data entry in our Homeless Management Information System (HMIS) before going through the CA training. This ensures better data, quality, collection, and new assessors feel comfortable with the skills required to complete once trained.

    If your agency is not currently using HMIS, please fill out the Partner With Us form.

    If your agency is already using HMIS, please contact your Agency Admin to start completing the steps below. This process generally takes a minimum of 1-3 months to complete, depending on experience.

    • Steps to Become a Community Assessor

      1. Complete HMIS New User Training (register above)
      2. Familiarize yourself with HMIS
      3. Attend a Crisis Outreach Training
      4. Use HMIS and show competency for a minimum of one month to ensure data quality
      5. Review Training Requirements & Expectations (see Documents & Forms)
      6. Complete the Assessor Interest Form
      7. ECHO’s Coordinated Entry team will review your interest form and contact you with next steps

      Please note: Steps 2 & 4 can either speed up or delay CA training. If you already have HMIS basic data entry understanding, you can test out of these steps by completing the HMIS skills test. Contact your Agency Admin to request the test

  • SOAR Training

    The SSI/SSDI Outreach, Access, and Recovery (SOAR) Program is designed to make the process of applying for federal benefits easier for folks living outside or at risk of losing their housing who have a serious mental illness, medical impairment, and/or co-occurring substance use disorder. Visit our SOAR page for more information.


    The first step to becoming a SOAR case manager is to register for the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s (SAMHSA) SOAR Online Course linked below. We’ll be notified when you do and will contact you with next steps, which includes one-on-one technical assistance from ECHO staff during your first application process. More information about the SOAR model is available in the recorded webinars below.

    • Webinar: Accessing Benefits Training from Social Security Administration Office

    • Webinar: SAMHSA Presentation of the SOAR Model and Outcomes for Austin/Travis Co.

Community Training Series

  • Adverse Community Experiences & Resilience

    Presented in partnership with Prevention Institute

  • Facilitating Motivational Interviews

    Presented in partnership with C4 Innovations

  • Fair Housing 101

    Presented in partnership with the Austin Tenants Council

  • LGBTQ+ Equal Access

    Presented in partnership with the Texas Homeless Network

  • LGBTQ+ Identities

    Presented in partnership with the Texas Homeless Network

  • Reentry, Recovery, and Housing

    Presented in partnership with C4 Innovations

  • Tenants’ Rights: The Basics

    Presented by ECHO’s Community Housing Team

  • Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) Housing Protections

    Presented in partnership with The SAFE Alliance

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