Tag Archive for: operations

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’s structure 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 into ministry structure 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/ministry 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/ministry 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/ministry 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 >>

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.