You’ve likely noticed that fewer and fewer people in your church bring a hard copy of the Bible, opting to use a Bible app on their smartphones instead. We have the power in our pocket to do any number of things from reading the Bible, taking notes, surfing the web, and responding in the moment to a message.

With the ability to do all this at your member’s fingertips (in church and outside of church!), it’s important that you consider all the ways that texting can actually help your ministry.

Why?

Well, according to Nonprofits Source, it takes 90 seconds on average to respond to a text while it takes 90 minutes on average to respond to an email. That is a staggering statistic that points to how texting can help make your church more effective at communicating with your current members and new guests.

Here are the top five ways a texting feature in your church management software can benefit your church:

1) Ministry to Others

Ministry doesn’t happen just in our Sunday services. In today’s world, we have the opportunity to more easily minister to people as they navigate their day-to-day lives. Did you know that you can use texting to do that?

For example, you could send a link to an encouraging devotional or a Bible verse. You could share an encouraging word or reminder throughout the week. You could send a question to ponder. Texting allows you and other church leaders to easily step into people’s lives during the week and minister to them as they go through their routines.

2) Sign-ups

Have you ever tried getting people to sign-up for an event or to get more information? It can be a chore to verbally tell them all the information in a conversation or from the pulpit.

With texting, however, you can have people text a word like “BAPTISM” to sign-up for the next baptism or get more information. The text response they automatically get back can have a link to all the details they need. So when you talk about an event or getting more information, you can keep it short and sweet and let your text send the extra details.

3) Reminders

Got an event coming up or perhaps you need to communicate a last-minute change? Texting can be a great option to notify people of changed locations, an important detail, or just a reminder not to forget that the event is happening. Nonprofits Source reported that 90% of text message reminders are read within three minutes, which means that you can make sure vital information is being read by most people!

4) Giving

Regardless of if your members are giving their regular tithe or if they want to give generously to a special area of ministry, online options for giving are more popular than ever and text-to-give options are one of the easiest ways to give today. When it comes to special giving or spur-of-the-moment gifts, the easiest way for people to be generous is by providing a simple way to meet the calling to give.

5) Guest Follow-Up

Visitors and first-time guests can feel awkward about being contacted with a phone call or even via email at times. Texting is a great way to casually and personally say hello and let them know how grateful you are they visited your church. You can even provide some links to next steps they can take if they’d like to learn more!

Texting is a great tool that can help inform and encourage your church’s members and guests. If you are interested in using texting in your church to do any of the things we mentioned here or if you’ve been on the lookout for a texting service that connects to your church management software, check out a demo of One Church Software to see how texting alongside our other features can support your ministry.

It’s 2022, so your church has likely had a website for quite some time! But did you know there are common issues that may be deterring visitors from your church’s website, or communicating messages you don’t want to be sending? Thankfully, there are simple checks you can do to see if these obstacles are impacting your website.

1. SSL Certificate Errors

It may sound complicated, but it’s actually super simple to check if you have an SSL Certificate Error. Check your browser’s address bar right now (if you don’t know, the address bar is where you type in the web address). There is a locked padlock to the left of our address of onechurchsoftware.com. That locked padlock is a sign that the information shared through your site has been encrypted. This is especially important if you offer online donations, but it is also the industry standard for almost any website nowadays. If you don’t see that locked padlock you’ll want to get in touch with your website hosting provider or try checking your site through https://www.whynopadlock.com.

2. Outdated or Inaccurate Privacy Policy

If your website collects any sort of information from its visitors, then you are required to have a privacy policy. And even if you aren’t required to have one, it’s still a good idea. By having a customized privacy policy you show visitors that you are good stewards of their information. If you need some help coming up with a customized privacy policy or just want some more information, we recommend checking out this article.

3. Sermon Archives are Difficult to Find

Do visitors have to click more than three times to find where your sermon content is located on your website? If so, then it’s too hard to find. When visitors want to get a taste of your church or if members want to catch up on sermons they couldn’t be at in person, you need to make them easy to find and well organized. If you utilize our sermon archive through One Church Software, then we’ve already done the hard work for you to keep your Bible teaching organized and easily accessible for others to enjoy. One Church Software also integrates with YouTube and Vimeo to make video hosting a breeze.

4. Target Audience and Next Steps Unclear

Church websites tend to talk to insiders first, instead of targeting people who are not yet a part of your community. And even when church websites target the right audience, the next steps to get connected are often unclear. Should they be reaching out for more information, “Planning a Visit,” signing up for a resource, watching a sermon, or something else?

5. Your Website is Disconnected From Other Tools

While this may not have to do directly with your website, integration across all the tools your church uses saves you a lot of time and makes you more effective in ministry. Too many churches are using different tools to do everything from registering for a special event, email sign-ups, event management, volunteer organization, texting software, and online giving. Having to maintain that many systems can get exhausting. Not to mention that it can create confusion and makes it difficult to manage all those systems. One Church Software is an all-in-one system that connects everything together. If you don’t already have a church management software or if the one you have doesn’t manage all your tools, try out our free demo video to see if One Church Software can help your church.

You don’t have to be a tech wiz to have a website that attracts visitors and serves your current members. By making sure your church website doesn’t have any of these 5 common issues, you can rest easy knowing that it shows care to your members and guests and points them to resources that can connect them.

If you found any of these issues or want some help getting an all-in-one technology solution to help you care for your members, empower your volunteers, and serve your community, we’d love to connect. Give us a call at 855.932.2060 or take advantage of our free trial.

As the warmer weather approaches, calendars fill up with vacations, sports, and other fun activities to take advantage of the summer sun! If you are a church leader, you have probably seen how this season impacts attendance at your church. This dip in attendance is commonly referred to as the “summer slump.” Churches see attendance hit an all-time low as the snowbirds return to their summer homes, college students travel back to their home states, and parents are looking for ways to occupy their kids during the break from school.

While you can’t bypass the summer slump altogether, we’ve got a few tips for church leaders to help deal with the summer slump and prioritize your church calendar.

1) Set Realistic Expectations

Don’t be discouraged when you see the summer slump start to impact your attendance. It’s normal for all churches to see a dip in attendance, and it is generally unavoidable. By setting realistic expectations, you won’t be disappointed or discouraged when those numbers start to dip.

2) Get Creative with Your Ministry

During the summer months, it might be difficult for some people to show up on a Sunday morning consistently. But that doesn’t have to mean that they are disconnected from their church community during this time. Look for ways to minister to your members and community outside of your prescribed service times. Look for local festivals, events, and service projects that you can participate in as a church and have a presence at to invest in the community.

3) Prioritize Digital Ministry

If you haven’t already, this is a great time to consider digital ministry options that people can partake in whenever it fits their schedule. Some questions to ask: How can we add value to people’s spiritual life through a digital ministry? Can we provide resources for a family worship night? Or maybe bite-sized devotionals that can easily be done in 5-10 minutes? The possibilities are endless to provide alternative ways to keep people connected to your church online.

4) Make Giving Accessible

Just because people are less likely to be physically at your church over the summer doesn’t mean that they don’t want to give regularly. Make sure your giving is accessible to those members with busy schedules. Online giving is a great way to provide options to your members whether they want to give once or set up a recurring monthly gift. Make sure your members know online giving is an option before the summer slump is in full swing!

5) Plan Ahead for the Fall

With a decrease in attendance, the summer is the perfect time to review and plan for the Fall. Set aside some time to review any systems you currently have in place and see if there is a way to improve them. When involvement gets more consistent, how will your ministry need to change? What initiatives need to be planned out now to be most effective?

6) Provide Special Events for the Whole Family

With children out of school and one, if not both, parents working, it can be difficult to find events the whole family can enjoy. Take note of the demographic of your church. Do you have more families, singles, or young couples? What kinds of events will serve your community best? Depending on the demographic of your church, you might consider offering VBS, movie nights, water park days, or picnics in the park. By offering events that help bring the family together, you can make sure connecting with your church is beneficial and not an obligation to fill-up their calendar even more.

The summer slump can be discouraging if you aren’t prepared for this season and don’t adjust what your church offers to support your congregation. If your church needs help setting up online giving or adding systems to be better prepared to get back into your stride in the Fall, now is the perfect time to try out a demo of One Church Software.

Planning a service can take a lot of hard work and organization, from writing the sermon to picking the right music to coordinating all the volunteers needed to make it possible. While you don’t need to be planning out every tiny detail, you also shouldn’t be winging every aspect of your service the day-of either.

(We consistently see churches swing a little too far in one or the other direction!)

To give you a hand at finding that happy middle ground, here’s a list of some best practices for planning your service:

1) Make a plan in advance; make adjustments in the moment.

Planning is one of the most spiritual things a leader can do. Have you ever thought about that? Developing a plan is one of the core ways that we, as leaders, shepherd our flock carefully.

Now it’s still wise to allow for necessary, Spirit-led adjustments in the moment, and to remain flexible. But developing a plan helps your team prepare effectively, keeps your team organized, allows you to lead from intentionality rather than urgency, and keeps your overall pace at a manageable level.

2) Prioritizing excellence requires you to give your team time to prepare.

Rarely can a team produce their best at a moment’s notice. For most people, excellence comes when they know what their tasks are in advance, can prepare for those tasks ahead of time, and can even prepare their own heart for their role in the service.

If you’re not sure how much time would be best, ask your team! Giving them time to prepare shows that you care, and allows them to serve with the best of the passion and skills God has given them.

3) Stop texting your volunteers for their availability.

Texting may seem convenient, but in reality, tracking all those details week after week eats away too much of your time. Instead of texting each volunteer for their availability and then having to text them back after you’ve made your schedule, make it easier on yourself and them by utilizing a Church Management Software (ChMS).

Through a ChMS, you can have volunteers input their availability in advance, and the system will automatically notify them when they are scheduled to serve.

4) Communicate your sermon content as early as you can.

The earlier you can communicate your sermon content, the better! This will allow your team to have plenty of time to pick out music, Scripture readings, and special elements that match your sermon content and creates a cohesive service from start to finish.

Overall sermon topics should generally be defined at the start of a series, and a great goal is for your sermon content to be planned and communicated 1-2 weeks in advance.

5) Say “thank you.”

Encouraging your team is just as important in service planning as the elements you include in the service. You don’t want your team to become a revolving door of people. Building a solid team that is engaged in the work that God has called you to do requires that you encourage your team members regularly and show appreciation for what they do.

When you see a team member serving, take time to genuinely thank them. And it never hurts to schedule regular time in your schedule to give them a personal gesture of appreciation (handwritten thank you card, a small gift card, a text, etc.).

6) Always have a follow-up plan.

One of the most important pieces of planning for your service is your follow-up plan. How will you connect with new people that just experienced your service? Will people clearly understand what the next step is and how to take it?

Churches with a clear follow-up plan are much more likely to build long-term relationships with guests. Believe it or not, it’s actually something that can be automated!


If you are not naturally a planner, all this might seem a bit overwhelming. It may feel that way initially, but as you make these things part of your routine, you will find yourself with more time and less stress.

Ultimately, this is all about helping your church thrive and fulfill its mission to encourage believers and bring the Gospel to those that are not yet saved! The Holy Spirit has the power to work in our planning just as much as He has the power to work in the moment.

Looking for a church management system to support you in effective service planning? Learn how this core feature works in One Church Software’s award-winning, all-in-one software for churches.

Easter Sunday—According to Pew Research Center, it’s one of the biggest two Sundays people will attend each year and more Americans search online for “church” around Easter than they do any other time of the year. Every day in the life of a church matters deeply, but to say that Easter is the church’s Super Bowl for engaging new people is no understatement!

Whether you’ve already been planning for weeks and know where your team is headed, or if your calendar doesn’t yet have Easter Sunday highlighted, circled, with multiple notifications and a countdown timer, we wanted to share five simple steps you should consider as you get ready for your 2022 Easter Service.

Let’s jump in:

1) Make a clear plan in advance.

Perhaps this should go without saying, but with the number of people that will be coming through your church’s doors (physically or digitally), you need to have a clear plan in place. For many of those people, this is the one time a year they attend a church service. It may also be a chance to welcome back those that haven’t been attending regularly.

Take some time to detail a clear plan with any special elements that need to be created in advance. What are your goals for Easter? Will you have special graphics? Do you need extra help that day to make sure everyone gets a seat? Who are the key people on your team you need to empower to direct others?

By making sure you have a solid plan in advance, you are able to approach the day strategically, and you will avoid stressing out your team by scrambling to organize a service last-minute.

2) Communicate that plan to your team.

Now that you have a clear plan of what your church’s goals are for Easter Sunday, don’t keep it to yourself! That plan needs to be communicated to your team. This could be done over a detailed email, a planning meeting, or through your church management software.

Make sure your team has all the necessary resources to execute the plan and keep up-to-date on what has been accomplished and what’s left undone.

Most of all, this is your opportunity to get your team excited! Help them see the vision for your Easter service this year. Build excitement for them, praying together expectantly for what God will do in the hearts of those who engage with your church on Easter.

3) Make sure you have a guest follow-up plan.

It’s no secret that many churches view Easter Sunday as a prime opportunity to get once-a-year churchgoers or those who have been involved irregularly to engage with your church beyond this one Easter service.

But that doesn’t happen by accident. It requires an intentional follow-up plan.

How do you plan to engage meaningfully with the people who are attending your Easter service? This, of course, starts with how they experience the service itself. Is it easy for them to check their kids into the children’s ministry? Can they find a place to sit easily? Were people kind?

But beyond that, this leads into your follow-up plan. How do you plan to engage meaningfully after the service is over? Do you have a visitor card that is simple and can be quickly completed? Are you planning to send a follow-up text or a carefully-crafted series of emails? Would it make sense to send a thank you gift? What is the next step you’re inviting new people to take?

These are all questions worth asking.

4) Schedule an Easter debrief meeting ahead of time.

All too often, we have a habit of waiting until next year’s planning meeting to ask how the previous year went. But here’s the problem with that: Nobody remembers the detailed breakdown of what went right and wrong!

Instead, we should review what worked well and what didn’t within a week of Easter Sunday so everything is fresh in our team’s minds. Make sure you take good notes that you can find next year.

Is there anything you did this year that didn’t work? Was there anything that worked particularly well? Was there anything you missed that you need to remember to improve on next year?

5) Focus on the truth of Easter.

Ultimately, this one is most important. All of the planning and organizing in the world doesn’t make a difference if you are personally not being reminded of what Easter is all about. How is the truth of Christ’s death and resurrection affecting your heart right now? How should that truth inspire your church to live out their faith in your community? What hope does it give us in a world full of uncertainty and chaos?

As leaders, when our hearts are moved by the truth of Christ’s death and resurrection, and that is our focus while we observe Easter Sunday, we can rest assured these truths will bleed over into the hearts of those we lead as well.

Planning a service like this can take a lot of coordination and support from our teams, but there truly is so much opportunity for us to engage our communities. Take the time to make a plan, and remember your why—to “go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you” (Mt. 28:19-20a).

Organizing your people and communicating with them is a whole lot easier when you have a church management system doing the hard work for you of helping you stay organized. Learn how One Church Software’s all-in-one solution can help you manage your volunteers, finances, service planning, giving, children’s ministry check-in, event registrations, and much more.

Your church’s mission is to reach people with the Good News and grow their faith. It’s the core of everything you do, but capturing people’s hearts and attention isn’t always easy. And many times, it’s the little details outside of the regular service that communicates genuine care and understanding.

There are all kinds of trendy and cool things your church can offer, from running a cafe that serves lattes and giving out free t-shirts to guests. Those kinds of things are not wrong in and of themselves, but if your ministry isn’t considering how it lines up with your community’s values, then you will have a hard time reaching people.

Does your community have a lot of young parents or single parents? If so, your community probably values making it easy for families to participate in all events. To structure your ministry in line with this value, you may offer additional child care, make it easier to check in your kids, or even find ways to integrate them into events.

While there are many different values your church may identify, here are a few of the top values we’ve seen in communities and how churches can integrate those values using church management software like One Church:

Easy Connection to Community

Have you ever been the new kid on the block? It can be hard to get to know people, let alone find a core community to get support and encouragement. You can provide an easy way to find out what groups exist and when they meet so people can join without waiting to receive a personal invitation.

Security & Safety

This is especially important in your kids’ area. Not only can you give parents an efficient way to check their kids in, but they can also provide the people authorized to pick them up. And have you ever worried about if the right people know about your child’s allergies? Any medical needs and allergies are printed directly on a child’s security label.

Clear Communication

Our lives are busy and complicated. Often if you don’t add an event to your personal calendar during the announcement, you won’t get the details at all! Or even worse, if you come in late or miss a service entirely, it’s easy to feel out of the loop. By using church software to house all your upcoming events and opportunities, including registration and easy integration to your personal calendar, you can ensure that everyone stays in the know!

A Sense of Purpose

People are passionate about their causes. They want what they do to make a difference—providing in-the-moment action steps like text-to-give is just a small part of this. Communicating what those finances did and providing additional ways to get involved is crucial to connect your members to their sense of purpose. Your church has a responsibility to have transparency and follow-through when it comes to the ways we are impacting the world with our resources.

Clarity

Finding information, whether about events, your church’s mission, or more about what you believe, can be a treasure hunt! If your community has difficulty navigating your system or finding the answer in person, this is likely a point of frustration that can lead to disengagement.

Whatever your community values may be, how you structure your ministry should reflect those values. We know taking the step to get a church management software can feel like a big one. But, we have worked with countless churches and church leaders to help integrate their community values as they add church management software to structure their ministry.

If you would like to hear about how a church management software can support your specific community values, watch a free demo today

As a church leader, you have a lot of things on your plate. You may have considered upgrading to a church management system (ChMS) before, but weren’t sure if it was the right move for your church. The thought of changing your systems up can seem overwhelming and you may be wondering if it is even worth the effort.

You have a unique calling to not only shepherd and serve your church well, but also to steward your resources well. That may make you hesitant to spend some of your church’s finances to switch to a church management system or even wonder if it is necessary.

The purpose of a church management system is to help your ministry stay organized, automate repeatable tasks (so you can spend your time on the big stuff), communicate with your people, and much more.

So are you ready for one? We’ve put together a list of the top signs that your church is ready to get a church management system. Let’s dive in:

1) Are your members able to donate online?

If your church is still passing an offering plate during your regular service, it’s time to upgrade to a church management system. By offering online donations, people can give securely online and also set up recurring gifts.  This also makes it a breeze to deliver your end-of-year giving statements.

2) Does it take more than an hour to schedule volunteers for serving opportunities?

This is a big one! If you are spending an hour or more each week comparing availability, scheduling, and notifying your volunteers, then you should make the switch to a church management system to easily complete this task and organize your volunteers each week.

3) Are you still sending individual emails to follow up with guests?

Odds are you have several emails that you’ve been sending manually that you can automate. If you’ve got a list of repeatable tasks when someone visits for the first time that bog you down, then it’s time to take a look at how a church management system can take some of those off your plate. We promise that it will still feel just as personal to the receiver (you still are developing the email) but your to-do list will instantly be lighter!

4) How do you take attendance?

The days of manually counting people in seats or using a tally counter is one of those tasks that doesn’t need to be on your shoulders anymore. If you have been using one of these methods, it’s time to start using a church management system to save some time and to save your fingers from all that clicking!

5) Are you still relying on memory to try and identify visitors?

Before the days of the internet, you identified new visitors by some key volunteers that were outgoing and could spot the new faces in a sea of members. But that doesn’t always work anymore. As your church grows, or if you are short volunteers, it’s easy for new people to slip through the cracks. A church management system can create an automated system for visitors to check in and receive a follow-up from your church. No more people slipping through your doors unnoticed.

6) Do your kids’ volunteers rely on their memory to match kids with their parents?

The safety of our kids is a top priority at any church. But without a church management system, you rely on the memory of your kids’ volunteers to know which parent or guardian can pick up each child. A church management system can provide check-in labels with important information, like allergies and authorized adults to pick them up.

7) Is it easy for people to find and register for events or groups?

Far too often, it can feel like we have to reinvent the wheel every time we have something new for people to register for. Sometimes it’s a Facebook event. Sometimes it’s an email to RSVP to. Sometimes it’s a Google Form. It can get confusing, and it takes a lot more time and brain power for you and your team than it needs to. With a church management software, that is all organized in one place. Easy to set-up and easy to share.

We know taking the step to get a church management software can feel like a big one. But, we have worked with countless churches and church leaders to help make the switch. You have been called to steward your church’s resources well and that means both your finances and your time. So if any of the tasks above are taking up so much of your time that you don’t have the space to think about big picture things in your church, we’d invite you to consider the ripple effect a tool like this would have in your ministry and your leadership.

Adding a church management system can help free up your to-do list and open up your time to allow you to focus on leading your church well into where God is taking you.

Curious to learn more? Watch a software demo at your own pace >>

Holiday decorations? Check. Christmas sermon written? Check. Choir and band ready to perform? Check. Community outreach? Check.

If you are someone that likes checklists, you probably have one similar to the one above. Planning and preparing for the Christmas season is one of the busiest times of the year for church leaders. And you likely spend a large part of this time getting ready to share the hope of this season with your regular churchgoers and new guests.

But after the lights and candy canes are put away, there are still a few things that need to be done that can be easy to forget about.

As you prepare to celebrate with your family and look back on the year, be sure to set aside time to do these items that should be on every church leader’s end-of-the-year checklist:

1) Review your 2021 goals

You (hopefully) took some time to make them at the beginning of the year, so how did you do at achieving those goals? Were there some you didn’t reach or accomplish? Don’t just breeze past them; instead, take some time to review why. If you had too many goals or not enough help in achieving them, that will be important as you set new goals for 2022. It’s even just important to review all that you did in 2021! Celebrate how far you’ve come and the impact your church has had!

2) Evaluate your communication systems and where you can improve.

This is a great time to honestly evaluate how well your church is communicating. What’s working? What’s not? This doesn’t just apply to how you communicate with your church at large, but also how you communicate with your teams. Do you utilize software that helps track and notify team members that are volunteering or supporting a certain ministry? If you already do this, take some time to ask your teams how they feel it’s working and if you need to do anything differently.

3) Thank your faithful givers.

The end of the year is a perfect time to be able to effectively thank not only your regular members, but anyone that has given to your church. Make sure to include updates on special giving campaigns, missionaries, local ministries you support, and what the impact of their giving was in the last year. Saying thank you is so important to let people know that they are making a difference. This may be included with people’s yearly giving statements or it may be in addition to it.

4) Check to see if anyone is in need.

Christmas can be a hard time of the year for some. If they don’t have family, live far away from them, or have maybe experienced a loss this year, Christmas can feel lonely and isolating. Take some time to think about those in your church. Is there anyone that you haven’t seen around in a while that your church should reach out to? Is there someone that has lost their job or had health issues?

5) Give yourself time to rest.

Like really rest. It seems like the last two years have flown by and many church leaders have been working non-stop to adapt how we have done church during this time. Have you taken the time to rest and be still? Even if you’ve already taken some time to do that in the past, this should be a regular habit that is practiced.

As we celebrate Christ’s birth and close out 2021, we hope you plan some extra time to take care of these end-of-the-year tasks, and also to rest and spend meaningful time with family. Leading a church and organizing all of these things takes a lot of work. But we know that Christ is the one that will take our faithful efforts and cause them to bear fruit in 2022.

From all of us here at One Church Software, we wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Is your church still using pen-and-paper to plan events and collect guest information? Do you find yourself going in and manually sending follow-up emails or confirming with volunteers? Are you trying to plan events based on the verbal RSVPs you got last service? There is so much going on at your church and if you’ve been relying on any of these methods of organization, it can probably feel pretty overwhelming at times.

Your time matters. There’s a lot happening each week and the last thing you need to do is to manage details that could be automated.

Here are six things you should be automating at your church so you can focus on what you were called to do — leading your church and reaching people for Jesus.

1. Guest Follow-Up

Are you still typing an individual reply to every person that fills out a connection card? Do you find yourself copying and pasting a past email each time you reach out to someone who’s new to the church? It might seem like a small thing, but the collective time and the diverted focus this task is likely causing is a big deal.

While you will still want to be aware of who is new to your church and specific prayer requests, automating a well-crafted welcome note that is sent shortly after someone submits their information won’t just save you time, it also greets new guests in a timely manner. You can also include resources and links to your upcoming events so they can take the next step sooner.

This is actually a really easy automation to set-up! You’ll get any replies straight to your inbox, but all you have to do is write at least one email (though you could set-up more) that runs in the background every time someone new is added to the system.

2. Giving Responses and Follow-Up

Statistics show that you should be thanking givers within 24-48 hours of their gift. Are you aware of when people tithe? Is thanking someone for giving a task that consistently makes it to the bottom of your list or that you feel is just assumed? Odds are if you don’t have an automated system here, some giving is falling through the cracks unnoticed and unthanked.

By automating your giving responses, you can make sure people get thanked right away. This lets people know that their gift went through and gives them confidence that they made the right choice in supporting the ministry. In this automated response, you could also include what their faithful giving has provided or even update them on any special giving progress.

3. Kids Check-In

If you have kids, you know how crazy checking them in can be. And with safety protocols to match up kids with authorized adults, it’s so valuable to have an automated check-in process here. (If you don’t have a process in place for check-in and security, you need to implement one ASAP! This is a crucial part of reaching younger families.)

By implementing an automated system, parents can check their kids in easily with automatically-printed labels containing all the information people need to know, from your child’s name to any allergies they may have. This system can also integrate into helping you track attendance throughout your children’s ministries.

4. Event Confirmations + Follow-Up

If you’ve tried to plan a church event, you know what a headache it already can be to figure out how many people to plan for, not to mention letting everyone know when dates, times, and locations change. So sending out a confirmation email and creating an updated list of event attendees are two things that should be done, but shouldn’t have to be done by hand.

Automating event lists (who’s attending) allows you to communicate with all the right people, rather than email blasting your entire church when the picnic gets rained out. Everyone who signs up gets added to a list. You can easily email (or text) just those people.

And by automating your event confirmations, you can send out event-specific follow-ups to go directly to the people that attended. This ensures people have the location, time, and any other details easily accessible come the day of the event.

5. Task Management

Have you ever had to track someone down to get a progress update about a task? It can be especially difficult in ministry, as you work with a lot of volunteers who help you in their spare time outside of normal work hours. 

By having an automated system to easily assign tasks and get project updates, you don’t have to spend hours or days playing phone tag with someone. And if you have recurring projects, there are many automations, like our Workflows, that will allow you to set up a progression of subtasks, such as sending a follow-up text to a new guest, updating a donor address, or finishing up plans for an aspect of the Sunday service.

6. Attendance Tracking

It’s helpful to know how many people are actually attending your church, and to easily see who is falling away from the life of the church. Or if your church is hosting an event, it’s valuable to easily be able to see who ended up coming and who wasn’t able to.

By automating your service resources through One Church Software, you can create a check-in system so attendance is taken automatically. As an added bonus, you can set-up a notification for a member of your team or an automated follow-up process whenever someone hasn’t made it to a few services (or a workflow trigger of your choice). This is a great way to make sure no one falls through the cracks!

This is just a short list of some of the things you can automate at your church to save you time so you can lead your church more effectively. If you are ready to start automating or are curious what other time-saving automations are out there, check out One Church Software’s features or reach out to see how we can help equip and organize your church so you are structured in a healthy way.

Within the church, all of our ministry efforts and communication should serve one purpose: leading people through their next steps with Christ, from the beginning stages of faith through the rest of their journey alongside your church. If the next steps aren’t made clear for people, they will typically choose to do things in whatever way seems best to them.

So when it comes to our role as leaders (and, in turn, as communicators), our energy should be dedicated to guiding people through those next steps with Christ. And that guidance needs to be clear. Because if it’s not clear, it’s confusing. And if it’s confusing, it’s poor communication. And poor communication is ineffective leadership. Poor communication allows opportunities for agendas and division within the church. Your job as a leader is to keep everyone aligned on mission and focused on the vision of the Church.

So what do we do as Church leaders?

1) You need to define what the “next steps” are.
Most of us like to label keeping people busy as “discipleship.” (I’m right there with you). But, if we’re honest, a lot of times the amount of programs we offer more often hinder people’s abilities to grow spiritually than help it.
We recommend developing a discipleship path to make the journey clear for anyone at your church. That may sound overwhelming, but creating a discipleship path is simply defining the next steps you ask people to take on their spiritual journey. And determining those things specifically will be so helpful in narrowing your ministry focus and prioritizing what you communicate as a church. Pro Tip: The next steps you define should flow out of your specific mission and vision, what God has called your church to accomplish and focus on.

2) Focus on inspiring people to take a next step.
Once you’ve defined the next steps, the goal now becomes leading people through that spiritual journey. You now have the opportunity to get creative by asking the question, “How can we inspire people to take a next step instead of just informing them of what’s available?” Our friends at Fishhook recently wrote a great article on that very topic.

3) Don’t prioritize communicating anything outside of your vision and discipleship plan.
Communication without purpose is just noise. As you define the journey that your church will guide people through, resist the urge to communicate anything that doesn’t fit within that process. Let your vision and discipleship path be the filter that all communication runs through. If it doesn’t make the cut, toss it out.

4) Evaluate your current methods of communication.
Finally, be willing to take an honest inventory of your current methods of communication and their effectiveness. This includes your announcements on Sunday mornings, the layout of your website, your social media presence, your bulletin, and the list goes on…

Don’t let “we’ve always done it this way” be the sole reason you hang on to a method of communication that is outdated or ineffective. And as we mentioned before, measure its worth against the goals you’ve set in both your vision and discipleship plan.

Author: 95Network