We offer a 30 Day Free Trial of our Church Management Software because confidence in choosing the tool that will be the back-end server of your entire ministry is extremely important. Feel free to use the trial as an opportunity to occasionally login and play around to get a feel. But, here are some ideas on how to make sure the trial gives you the results you really want.
- Be specific on how serious you are about making a change. If your current system of tracking information on people and processes is driving you crazy, then acknowledge that. Stop overlooking this systemic problem and decide it's time to learn more. There are almost always some obstacles to any change. Identify those and how to overcome them.
- Decide how you are going to choose. There are lots of choices out there. To narrow them down, most people start with an Internet search. That's a great idea, but don't be afraid to go down a few pages to find individual companies. There are a growing number of software recommendation services out there jockeying for position on the first page. Realize these may be helpful but behind the scenes all of them make money by payments from the companies they are comparing. The same is true of the ads on the search page. They are paying to catch your attention. J ust be aware of that. A referral by a friend is a great way to learn more. Sometimes friend referrals are as helpful on what software not to go with as what to go with. Most importantly, though, know what you want the software to do for you. Sit down and make a list of what you would want the ideal solution for your church to do for you.
- Take time to Meet The Software. Review the website of the companies you are considering. Look for something like an About Us section to learn the history of the company and find out the current ownership. Where a company came from gives you a picture of where it is headed. There is a lot of consolidation and investment going on in the Church Management System industry which is changing the landscape. You'll want to be aware of that. This is why I do live webinars. It gives me a chance as a founder of Churchteams to walk you through the software answering questions and interacting with your concerns along the way. We get a chance to get acquainted and you get a founders-eye view of what the software will do. These one hour investments are probably the very best way to get to know us.
- Make the 30 Day Free Trial feel comfortable. We discovered that doing free trials with bogus data is okay but it's like test-driving a car without adjusting the seats or the mirror. It is a much more comfortable and informative experience if you import your own data into the trial account. We will even import your data for you for free during the trial. Taking a tour of the software then importing your data is a great combination to optimize your trial.
- Take it for a spin. Now that you have an idea of the destination from doing a webinar and the resources of people data that you are familiar with in your free trial, take it out for a test drive. Do a simple task like add and update member information. Create real live groups and set up the report reminders for a couple of group leaders / teachers to try. Enter a contributions batch of checks and cash either a real one alongside your current database or a made up one for several years ago. You can delete the batch to clear out the data in the future. Send out emails or texts. Reserve a Text-to-ChurchTM number and set up an event registration. If you're really feeling it, set up a workflow. This way you can try a little of everything and gain the confidence you need before you buy.