Posted in: Salesforce for Church - Part I
Interesting article. I've used Salesforce at our company a few years ago, but not that extensively. How would I sign up for the free version you're describing? Is it the "Force.com Free" described on their web site or is there another version?
What about reports like directories, or membership reports such as what the denomination asks for every year, have you been able to extract that type of information?
Posted in: Zoom Paid Accounts?
We have one paid Zoom account that we successfully used this week for a virtual Council meeting. The paid Zoom account allowed us to go beyond the 40 minute limitation of the free account. We had 10 participants, and we were able to share a screen to show an agenda, etc.
I have used Skype, Skype for Business, and Teams. You should review what each offers and determine what best fits your requirements.
Posted in: New Church Website?
Understanding who your intended audience is to be will help determine what your web site should contain. Our focus has been to provide information to both the congregation and community. Based on our visitation statistics, and comments from members and visitors, our most frequently viewed pages besides the home page has been the weekly bulletin page, followed by "who to contact," then our church activites page. These pages give visitors some idea of what the church is doing, and what is important to the congregation.
Our site is in the midst of a recontruction itself, so we will be making adjustments to content as well. A web page does need to be dynamic, so you should be able to review site activies and be able to make adjustments to better serve you congregation and community.
Thanks for the feedback. I'll check on these sites and packages.
I keep thinking that since each year all churches in the CRC are asked to collect and pass along the same type of information such as births, deaths, transfers, baptisms, etc., we should be able to put our heads together to come up with a CRC piece of software. It could be web based, or stand alone, and include the fields that all of us have to collect anyway. Instead of each congregation trying to re-invent the same package by customizing some off-the-shelf piece of software, it might be nice if we could find some creative software writer in the denomination to help us put something together.
Thanks for all of the suggestions and comments! There's some great material here to review. I'll post here with what I/we find.
Dale, Sorry, i thought I sent a note back. I have your file. I will be looking it over this week. To stuffed to read these days! Thanks!
James, I signed up for and now have a SalesForce account. It took a while, but I was able to import my Access database up to SalesForce. My biggest challenge since then is trying to create a report. There are some fairly typical reports we use including phone directories, membership lists, etc. Most folks are comfortable using computers these days, but in order for a product to be used, they have to be able to enter data and create reports fairly easily. So far, I haven't found SF easy to use to create reports, and I spend my days working on or with computers. If we can set up ways to easily enter and modify data, and create or use these standard reports, I'd be more than happy to take a swing at this.
Thanks for the posting on this. I started testing this out. I was able to import my old database without too much trouble. This is still geared more towards a web admin with SQL experience, but I like the idea of having the data managed securely available via the web. This would allow others who need to see or modify the data access, without it being locked up on a single computer in the church office.
Posted in: Record keeping of baptisms?
Once a year the denomination sends out a questionaire\survey that your clerk of records typically fills out. This would include things like births, baptisms, deaths, marriages, etc.. We record the information for our records and the denomination. We also provide a Baptism certificate for the family.
Thanks. I'll take a look. I know we are still using a more manual method. I could send you a screen shot or two of the reports I had been generating, as well as the fields we have found need to get tracked.
Thanks for the note. I use Access to do the same, plus it allows me to pre-create reports and modify queries. My problem is that if I want to pass the job on to another person, they need to be an Access expert. If there is an off-the-shelf piece of software, more of that functionality is behind the scenes. There are a number of packages out there, but I am not familiar with them.
After reading an article by Mavis Moon over on the "Church and Web" area, I decided to apply for a non-profit SalesForce license. I had used SalesForce.com a couple of years ago at my company, so I wassomewhat familiar with it. I wanted to use what I had already developed in terms of my Access tables so I would not have to re-type everything. My goal was to have a single location for membership information that multiple users could get to for reports.
I had some excellent assistance from the SalesForce.com tech support team to import my tablesd from Access. SalesForce has many tools, with extensive abilities. I have not been able to get too far with querires and reports as I have not been able to devote as much time to it as it appears I will need to. I will need to watch some of their videos I think to get up to speed. My first impression though is this is not a simple system to use, and not for someone who does not have some database management experience.