church management system.
At its core, this Church Management System is a central database for the Church. It is designed to hold the records of all church structures, church organisations, clergy, ministers, pastors and members.
Holding all this data in one centralized secure online database will give you the ability to act as one united church showing the love of Christ.
why is this a crucial moment for a system like this?
The world has entered a period of political, economic and social transition arguably as crucial as the difficult years of the late 1980’s and early 1990’s.
Civil society, business, some political parties and unions are all calling for the church to play a greater leadership role at this crucial moment. National church leaders are increasingly playing a bigger role, whilst other leaders are being seen as regional and even national voices. Ministers/Pastors play important roles in communities and church members lead in many areas of public life. The Church is being asked to stand up and lead like it did so successfully 30 years ago.
The challenge this time around is different to three decades back and the tools this generation will need to organize and mobilise will be different. Vision and good intentions are the first step, but we all know without execution this vision will remain just a dream.
The Bible speaks of the body of Christ – each part of the body playing a unique role in unity under the headship of Jesus Christ. The Internet has given us the ability to create tools that can become a virtual nervous system for the body of Christ – ensuring that each limb can communicate and coordinate with the others creating an effective whole – able to minister in unity and power to the nation.
This Church Management System has been designed to be a tool that acts like this nervous system for the body of Christ – both the Church and the broader ecumenical movement.
For the first time in history the church has the potential to access tools that truly allow for all of its members to practically collaborate and mobilise in service. This Church Management System has the capacity to act as an essential foundational system to enable communication and mobilization of a movement that can include every Christian, from top leadership to layperson.
As a movement develops and faces new challenges this Church Management System has the potential for other modules to be developed for specific functions running off its foundational back-end database functionality.
Now is a crucial time to take the first steps that will over time unleash the capacity of the church to truly play its role in the New Struggle as we serve in the building of the nation.
how will this system help you?
free-up staff time.
Much time in any administrative office is spent on phone calls or in meetings dealing with basic requests for information that could easily be automated within the Church Management System. This will release staff time to work on real issues that require time, focus and wisdom. This can also save travel and enquiry time for priests and church wardens, releasing them to do more ministry focused work.
The Church Management System platform can provide you with realtime statistics around finances and church attendance, allowing you to track trends and predict a crisis, both at a church and a denominational level. This will allow you to take swift action to solve or preempt a crisis. The longterm trends will inform your annual strategic planning.
improve financial reporting and accountability.
The Church Management System provides you with simple tools to allow your parishes to manage and monitor their finances, whilst presenting this data in an easy format for your own usage.
reliable and fast communication channels.
Communication in the church has often been unpredictable because of the many levels of authority any message needs to pass through. With Church Management System you are able to communicate directly with every member and create distribution lists to speak to niche audiences.
easy access to information.
In an organisation as large and complex as the church it’s easy for information to be caught in silo’s or lost when key personnel move or leave the system. The Church Management System allows information to be recorded in easily accessed locations for access to all those with the relevant authority.
We all have particular operational problems that require a systems solution to ensure that new levels of efficiency and effectiveness can be achieved. Whether it’s monitoring insurance, managing a fleet of cars, giving clergy access to pension details or something entirely more challenging, it helps to have a system like Church Management System in which you can embed a solution; and a team who understand your unique problems in the development of that solution. This means that together we will be able to design a better Church Management System over time as your needs change.
drive missional engagement on social issues.
The church ultimately exists to serve its non-members or broader society. The Church Management System is able to act as a system to coordinate and communicate when the church needs to respond to humanitarian crises, such as floods or fires. It can also be used to bring people together over a longer period of time to tackle some of the deeper systemic issues in society, for example unemployment and poverty.
delivers compliance with the law on data protection.
The Church Management System gives Church organisations a platform to store members’ personal data that is compliant with the laws that protect private information. We have done everything reasonable to keep members personal data secure.
Members can have their records removed from the database upon request to support office.
what is the system structure?
The various portals through which someone can use the data in the online database is divided up into portals. The current list of portals:
Used by organisations within the church for statics and communication to their members.
Church Group Portal.
For groups created at a church level. Give access to these groups without having access to the entire church portal.
This is the basic level at which all church structures are recorded. Each member belongs to one church structure. There are sub portals for finance (limited access) and groups.
Used by individuals to keep their personal details up to date and engage with the church.E.g. can monitor when they are on Sunday duty and group details of groups they belong to.
There portals can be at various levels within your church structure. They provide a helicopter view of what is going on with regard to members and structure.
There are communication facilities that allow for bulk e-mailing and push notifications to the MyChurch app.
This is separated from the general portals for privacy reasons. There is one for the church and another for denominational level. The language used in the portal is very simple to enable non-booking people the ability to use it. There are 3 layers to this portal and a church can use one, two or all three.
1. Record pledging and tithing
2. Basic records of income and expenditure, produce an income and expenditure statement.
3. Capture further records to produce a trial balance.
Further to the above there are 2 systems for denominational level to control their church giving.
1. By the denomination inputting the amount the church needs to pay and then capturing payments.
2. The system creates a flat percentage required for payment based on the parish income captured.
Access to the portals is granted within the portal and in then gained once the member has logged in.
The Church Management System mobile phone app (called MyChurch by customdesign.co.za) features communication to members’ cell phones to the app in an SMS style, for free! The church is going to be on the cutting edge of modern communication methods, secure and trusted. The app also has a channel which provides a brief message of encouragement aimed at young people provided by the Youth Hub.
what’s the bottom line?
Denominational and Organisational access to the system is free access to churches using the system with more than 5 church level access.
Please contact us so we can work out an accurate price together.
cost per church level access
$ 20 PM
No set up fees
Push notification system (mobile app)
Built in financial system
Members occupation list
why is it so much cheaper than other systems?
We are not doing this to make a profit, we only need to cover our expenses. Most importantly of all, this is a Holy Spirit inspired system (yes our God told us to do this, ask us).
why churches have to pay for the use of the Church Management System.
This project is run by self-supporting missionaries at the Anglican Church of Southern Africa. We have to raise our own funds to run the IT Ministry. We have to pay not only the people (developers, support staff etc.) but also for the world class hosting servers and security (we do the job properly). In order for us to do this we raise funds by asking a subscription fee and selling advertising space on the site.
what happens if we make a surplus?
It is planned that any surplus will go into mission and evangelism to be used by Growing the Church.
No person or private company is going to get rich☺
What functions does this Church Management System have to do this work?
All portals provide information about the members assigned to it, this can include the following:
- Male to Female ratio
- Languages spoken
- Relationship status
- Disabilities, help for planning events, e.g. do you need signers for the deaf.
- Residential areas, e.g. suburbs, cities, counties
- Church data, e.g. diocese and church numbers
- Church status, e.g. how many members in leadership
- Trends in church attendance and giving
- Members occupations.
These statics provide a helicopter view to aid in strategic planning. For example, an area leader can see which suburbs are strong and weak where members live and what requires attention.
The Province will have an overall view of how the province is made up with real time data, this applies to all level of churches as well.
Current census data is on hand for use by the church leadership.
The accuracy and protection of members contact details will be greatly enhanced by having just one place where they are stored for all church organisations to access. Currently, especially the leadership, can find their details in many databases. When an email address or telephone number changes, the reality is, it is not updated in all the databases. Having one database will help to keep information up-to-date and improved communication.
Communication by e-mail and the mobile app will be able to be done from a macro to a micro level. For example, the person in charge can send his reflections by email to everyone in the church, or a mail can be sent to a small group by a church.
Members can receive communication that is relevant to them, e.g. all leaders in the church.
It will be important to set up structures through which authority is given to use the free communication of e-mails and push notification (via the mobile app) at especially denominational level to prevent abuse of this valuable resource.
stewardship and financial.
The church giving plugin (part of the financial portal) will result in members been able to track their giving through the personal portal. This will have a positive effect in encouraging members to fulfill their promises to the church, resulting in an increase of income.
The plugins for church and denominational assessment will be helpful to keep track of this.
Various leadership records can be kept online for access by the member and the church. For example, leaders leave records could be kept, facilitating online leave application and approval.
Baptism and confirmation records of each member can be kept.
convenient web and mobile access.
As the access to the data is done via the internet using a web browser, this makes it available across all platforms like, desktop computers, tablets and mobile phones. Currently 35% of people accessing the site are using a mobile phone or tablet.
Church leaders have access to all their members’ details wherever they are, not just in the office.
Keeping the records off site has many advantages. They cannot be stolen with a laptop or desktop computer. Upset staff cannot delete the churches database before leaving.
Our servers (we have 4) are currently located with a dedicated server company called Server-Admins. They utilise the Mweb datacentre, which has some of the following features:
- Active Environmental control monitoring and reporting
- Full cooling redundancy in the unlikely event that the active cooling core is subject to fault.
- N+1 Data Centre Compliance
- UPS and Diesel Generator Backup Power
- 24/7 Security, including dual Biometric and Access Card control systems.
- CCTV monitoring and escorted visits