Ten lessons from the school of hard knocks that improved Groupfinder.

Posted by Boyd Pelley on 8/9/22 2:15 PM

Churchteams started out in 1999 as a tool for making disciples and building teams. A year or so later we were referring to it as a small group software.  Within a couple of years it started gaining traction with churches all over the country. 

I was a small group pastor at the time and had been for almost a decade.  I wasn't new to the challenges of starting and building a small groups ministry, I was exhausted trying to do it.  When I understood cloud computing for the first time, I had a hunch this was the answer.  And, I had a friend who was willing to pioneer this idea with me using his skills as a software architect.  Mark and I have been doing that for 23 years now.  

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Tags: Small Groups

Seven problems volunteer scheduling software solves and a briefing tomorrow.

Posted by Boyd Pelley on 8/2/22 11:00 AM

People typically think of solving the problem of scheduling when they consider software for volunteers.  In this third and final post of this series on volunteers, we’re going to focus specifically on this, most complex , step of the volunteer system.

The best way to solve a problem is to define it.  Here are the seven problems and how scheduling software solves them.  It’s actually pretty complex.

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Tags: Volunteers

Three recommendations for building an effective volunteer system

Posted by Boyd Pelley on 7/26/22 3:00 PM

Generally, staff are the catalysts and budgets are the fuel for ministry. It doesn’t matter whether a church has a lot of these or not, it takes volunteers to make church happen.

But, there has to be a deeper calling to volunteer than just making church happen. Like stewardship, volunteering or serving is a matter of discipleship. It is an important part of becoming more and more like Christ.

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Tags: Volunteers

Seven steps to deal with the stress of volunteer management.

Posted by Boyd Pelley on 7/19/22 3:00 PM

It's the middle of July.  If you are church staff and have already been on your summer vacation, then my guess is you're beginning to stress about recruiting volunteers for the fall ministry season.  Am I right?

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Tags: Volunteers

Two truths we hold to be self-evident.  2) All people are equal.

Posted by Boyd Pelley on 7/12/22 3:00 PM

Last week I shared how church is critical to understanding the self-evident truth that all people are created.  This week I want to look at how a teams world-view is developed and how it gives people the best chance to realize the second self-evident truth - that all people are equal. 

Together I hope this two-week, Fourth of July inspired series of blogs gives a little perspective on what we are seeking to do as a company.

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Tags: About us, Misc. Insights

Two truths we hold to be self-evident.  1) All people are created.

Posted by Boyd Pelley on 7/5/22 2:15 PM

The second paragraph of the U.S. Declaration of Independence begins, "We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness."

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Tags: About us, Misc. Insights

Why should churches pay for texting? Built in budgeting features.

Posted by Boyd Pelley on 6/28/22 2:00 PM

In this short series on texting for churches, we've looked at the history of business texting (A2P) and compared free texting to Text-to-Church (10DLC).  In this third post, let's look at the budgeting features built in to T2C to help staff manage their communication budgets.

To start with, texts associated with the following features do NOT count toward your 500 allotted monthly texts or 2 cent overages.

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Tags: Text-To-Church

Why should churches pay for texting?  Compare free texting to Text-to-Church.

Posted by Boyd Pelley on 6/21/22 2:30 PM

In the last post we surveyed the history of business (A2P) texting. We learned that initially A2P texting was available either for thousands of dollars per month using short codes or free using email.  That left a wide gap for the innovation that rolled out in 2021 called 10 digit long code (10DLC) texting. 

Churchteams provides both free (through email) and paid (through 10DLC) texting that we branded Text-to-Church (T2C).  But, when should you use free texting and when should you use T2C?  Here are some things to consider. 

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Tags: Text-To-Church

Why should churches pay for texting?  A short history of business texting.

Posted by Boyd Pelley on 6/14/22 2:00 PM

 As common as it is now, it wasn't until 2014 that texting surpassed calling as the go to method for Person to Person (P2P) tele-communication in the United States. 

But there is another type of texting called Application to Person (A2P) texting. This is commonly thought of as Business Texting.  There are companies that provide this service as a stand alone for businesses or churches.   As technology continues to aggregate, many relational databases like Churchteams have implemented the same A2P functionality in their product.  This is a big win for the end user.

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Tags: Text-To-Church

New releases!  Seven guardrails to help you keep your data safe.

Posted by Boyd Pelley on 6/7/22 2:45 PM

Over time data has a tendency to drift off the road and even crash.  The application itself might be fine, but the data is a wreck. When this happens, those depending on it no longer trust it, and start looking for something new.  

One popular solution is to put a sentry at the gate of the database.  This person is responsible for all data entry, reports, and maintenance.  This solution helps keep data safe, but it also creates a bottleneck on use of the data.  Like an accident on a 4 lane highway narrowing traffic down to one lane, church staff end up looking for detours to get their work done.  Pretty soon the staff has data in so many locations they find themselves once again lacking trust in the core data.

We've felt for a long time that the database itself could become a decentralized sentry.  We built reminder emails (groups, volunteers, payments) to make sure data is consistently collected.  We built scheduled reports to automate communication of information.  

We've also started building guardrails designed to keep data from getting wrecked.  In fact, we've released seven of these in the past couple of months.  Here they are along with a few other new releases.

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Tags: Church Management Software, New Release

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