Happy 2015 from Church Office Online!

A new year often makes us question what we want to accomplish over the next 12 months. It’s been suggested that a new year means 365 blank pages for you to fill out. It’s also the time of year where you begin to look at the future of your ministry, and what can help you continue this.

The reason Church Office Online began was to make it easier for you to spend more time focusing on your ministry, and letting us handle the behind the scenes tasks. If you are still wondering what church management software can do for your church, we want to help. Did you know that we offer a free 60-day trial of our services?

Once you’ve had your free trial and see all of the great features we have to offer, we make it easy and affordable to obtain such a great service. Our subscriptions start at just $14.75 per month, and you’ll even get a 5% discount if you decide to pay for a full year up front. You can do even more for your ministry with that 5% back!

So how do you register for your free trial? Click here to send us your information, and you’ll be one step closer to trying our services. As always, if you have any questions, feel free to contact us! We hope you have a blessed 2015, and we are so happy to help your church grow this year.


Thanks,

Church Office Online

1/7/2015 8:07:00 AM

Merry Christmas from Church Office Online!

As you prepare for your Christmas Eve festivities and/or church services, we want to wish you a blessed time with your family, friends and congregation members. For those of you that have used our services this year, we want to thank you for allowing us to enjoy the journey in helping to build your ministry. If you are looking into a Church Management Software solution, we want to thank you for stopping by, and to let you know that we are always here to answer any questions that you may have.

In the last year we have done our best to teach you about the wonderful features that Church Office Online has to offer your ministry. From our child check-in features to our mass communication options, we want to make sure you have more time to focus on what matters. We’ll take care of the software! Our goal for 2015 is to continue to improve your experience, which means we would love to hear your feedback. We take reviews and comments of our features and benefits very seriously. If there is any feedback that you may have, you’re welcome to leave a comment below.

You can also find us on your favorite social media channels. We have a Facebook page, Twitter page and now even a Pinterest page! We think it is all very Pinteresting...

Thank you for another great year, and we can’t wait to continue the journey with you. Merry Christmas, and we will see you again next year!


Thanks,

Church Office Online

12/23/2014 2:33:00 PM

Online Giving: The Gift That Keeps On Giving

This time of year is commonly referred to as “Giving Season,” or “The Season of Giving,” for a variety of reasons. Maybe it’s the Christmas spirit in us all, or maybe it’s the message of compassion and giving back that we receive at church. We love to give around the holidays! One thing you can give your church congregation members is the convenience of Online Giving for tithes and donations.

We have partnered with easyTithe, the trusted source in Online Giving. The transaction rates can be found here, and we make sure to keep them affordable so that you can get the most out of your donations that are collected. There’s also no monthly minimum required from your church, so if you have a smaller or growing congregation you won’t have to worry! This Online Giving software is available at no extra monthly charge with your Church Office Online package.

We can handle all of the ChMS needs for your church, that way you can focus on growing your ministry. Online Giving will help to increase the amount of recurring donations your church will receive, which will help create a more stabilized budget for the year. You will also have the ability to use the software’s Facebook integration, which will allow your church members even easier access to the service. Your data import and exports are simple to manage, and we are always here for you if you have any questions on this process.

Enjoy this wonderful season, and continue to receive gifts throughout the year with this easy and convenient software.


Thanks,

Church Office Online

12/10/2014 8:25:00 AM

Year End Contribution Statements – Overcoming Obstacles

If your church is preparing to send out its end of the year contribution statements, you’re not alone! Contributions are always a topic of discussion at churches during this extremely busy time of year. Sending out contribution statements can be easily managed, but there are some situations that can make this a much more in-depth process. Organization traditions or standards can present issues in the instance of separation or divorce within family units. So what is the best way to handle this type of situation when it comes to end of the year statements?

  • Attribute contributions to the person that submitted the envelop or wrote the check
  • Assign envelop numbers to all your congregation members, not just households
  • Make congregational members aware of your policy
  • Stick to the policy

Of course we are using our Church Office Online ChMS as the example program for this scenario. The above steps would allow your organization to best serve the needs of your members going through the difficult process of separation or divorce, and it would not cause a lot of extra work for your staff that works in the program. It is possible to delete and edit contributions to help individuals split their contribution information, but it is not an easy process. Using the above standards allows a church to still print "Household" contribution statements, and in the event there is a separation, then you can print individual statements. Using the standards outlined also allows the church to not have to re-manage contributions and introduce possible errors, especially if there happen to be a number of separations or divorces.

Our prayer is that separations and divorce do not occur in your church or organization and good data practices will allow to you quickly meet your member needs should they need to separate their giving records. If you need any additional information, feel free to contact us!


Thanks,

Church Office Online

11/26/2014 7:25:00 AM

Mass Communication Features

Christmas is coming. Your list is getting big. Your church’s congregation list, that is. You want to keep in contact with your church members, especially during this busy season, and we’ve got the tools to help. 

Mass Email

Our integration with MailChimp, an easy-to-use email platform, makes sending mass emails quick and simple. You can design professional-quality emails and track results at the click of a button. Your digital newsletters and correspondences will look like you’ve hired a designer to prepare them. Setting up your account will take just a few minutes, your email address and some preference set ups. Once you’re in, you can begin setting up different lists for your email communication. You’ll then enter your unique API key into your Church Office Online account, and you are all set! For a tutorial on just how easy this is, check out one of our mass email posts here.

Texts

You’ve seen some members of your church check text messages during the service. So you know they read these simple, short messages. Text Messaging is a fast and easy way to communicate to your whole congregation or specific lists for different reasons. If there is an emergency or cancellation, you can send a message almost instantly to the targeted groups. With every Church Office Online subscription, you’ll receive free SMS Text Messages. We have tutorials available to teach you all about the different features of Text Messaging, and we have made this feature fully integrated with our church management software. Setting this up is short. It’s simple. Just like a text!

Phone Tree

We’ve got a lot of great new technology that helps us to communicate in writing, but sometimes a phone call is a great way to communicate! That’s why we have integrated with Call-Em-All to make sure a phone tree is still possible for your church. You can easily synch your contacts through this easy-to-use tool, and then record voice messages to be sent out to selected users or lists. You can use this for prayer requests, fundraisers or any other church update.


Thanks,

Church Office Online

11/19/2014 7:38:00 AM

All-in-One Church Management Software

If you’ve been searching for a well-rounded solution to your church management software needs, researching can get tedious. So, we’re going to make it even easier for you with the Top 6 features you’ll love about Church Office Online:

Text Messaging and Mass Email

We include free text messages each month, so that you can stay connected to the members of your church. Text messages are received quickly and conveniently, and are a great way to spread your message fast! We also use MailChimp for an even easier way to convey your marketing message in email campaigns and through social media sharing.

Individual Access

Take the long process out of having someone update your congregation members’ information. Individual access is as simple as it sounds! Your members can access their own accounts to keep information up-to-date. They can even check out your church’s calendar and download their giving statements for tax purposes.

Online Giving

A secure way for your church members to give their tithes… online! This fast and convenient method is fully integrated with PayPal services, so each transaction is effortless and safe. Make it easier for your church to keep track of donations, while also making it easier for others to give at any time.

Child Check-In

Our iPad and tablet friendly system creates an uncomplicated and safe check-in process. This wireless technology allows you to print labels from your check-in stations, and it generates a unique receipt code for each family. Your volunteers will even have access to video tutorials for a fast way to learn the system!

Support

While we make it easy for you to access and navigate your church’s account, we know that questions come up. That’s why we are here for you for any needs you may have. Our customer support team is available to answer your calls or emails, and we have a variety of online resources available as well.

Testimonials

Ok, so we added a little extra. Now that you’ve taken a walk with us to see why choosing Church Office Online will work for your online ministry, let’s show you the talk. Check out testimonials on why you’re in good hands with us.

 

Thanks!

Church Office Online

10/31/2014 7:23:00 AM

Stop Spending So Much Money On Technology

Technology can be an incredibly useful tool to your ministry. It can also be incredibly expensive! The good news is there are a lot of inexpensive options out there that can reduce the amount of money you are spending on technology and provide a high level of service.

So read on to learn about how to reduce the size of your technology budget or fire this article over to your favorite geek so they can do it for you.

Here are some great free, or inexpensive, online services that your church should take advantage of:


Church Email

Having professional email for your church (i.e. yourname@yourchurchname.com) is an important signal to prospective members that your church has its technical act together.

Recommendation: Google Apps for Nonprofits

Price: Free


Website Hosting

A church website that contains a mission statement, doctrine overview, staff information, contact information, service times and directions is a necessity.

Recommendation: Wix

Price: Free


Church Management Software

Church management software makes administering your church so much easier than doing it by hand that it is almost a required piece of technology for any church at this point.

Recommendation: Church Office Online

Price: Starts at just $14.75 per month


Mass Email

Mass email communications to your entire church, targeted emails at ministries or groups and church e-newsletters are an essential part of effective communication with your congregation.

Recommendation: MailChimp

Price: Free


File Sharing

The staff and volunteers that lead your church need the ability to share documents, spreadsheets, pictures, etc. Online file sharing makes the task easy and accessible from any device.

Recommendation: Dropbox

Price: Free


We hope you find this list helpful.

The Church Office Online team.

7/6/2014 10:11:00 PM

Coming Soon - Prayer Requests

It’s been a couple of months since our last major release and we wanted to let you know we are hard at work on some major new features to benefit your church. We’ve been listening to the feedback you have provided in our church management software feature voting tool.

As a result of your votes, we are pleased to announce that we will be releasing Prayer Request functionality in Church Office Online later this summer.

Prayer Request Features - Church Management

Church Membership Online, our church management software, will be updated to include the following prayer request management functionality:

  • Create and edit prayer requests

  • Add responses to prayer requests

  • View prayer requests by individual

  • Report on prayer requests created during a date range

Prayer Request Features - Individual Access

Me.Church Member Online, our individual access application for church members to access their church contact information, calendar, etc. will be updated to include the following prayer request functionality:

  • Submit new prayer requests

  • View and edit existing prayer requests

  • View responses to prayer requests

We hope you are as excited about the new features as we are. We believe the ability for your church management software to enable your church members to submit prayer request online and your prayer leaders to pray for them and respond to them instantly will make a huge impact on your church. It is a great use of church technology to benefit the health of your congregation.

When Will Prayer Requests Be Available?

We are working hard to finish up the prayer request features and then test them to ensure they work smoothly. We plan to release the new functionality later this summer.

 

Church Office Online

6/22/2014 11:42:00 AM

Heartbleed And Your Church Software

You may have heard something about “Heartbleed” recently and wondered what all the fuss was about. Simply put, Heartbleed is one of the largest internet security flaws in history and it affected more than 75% of secure sites on the internet. You can read about it in detail at heartbleed.com

Is Your Church Management Software Safe?

Great question.

If you are using Church Office Online, the answer is yes - you are safe. We have updated our servers and SSL certificates with fixes for the Heartbleed vulnerability and everything is nice and secure again with industry leading 256 bit encryption.

If you aren’t using Church Office Online, we would suggest that you contact your church software provider and ask them if they have updated their servers and SSL certificates to address the Heartbleed vulnerability.

What Do You Need To Do?

We recommend that you change the passwords for all of your accounts just to be safe (its a good idea to change your passwords once and a while anyways.) We also recommend that you create a strong password. Here is a site that will generate a strong password for you.


Thanks!

Church Office Online

4/19/2014 6:23:00 PM

Call-Em-All Integration

We are pleased to announce our new integration with Call-Em-All, the best automated calling service around. This new integration will allow you to easily send pre-recorded messages to your members.

Integration Features

  • Send voice messages to your congregation
  • Easily import lists or ministry members in order to contact specific people.
  • No set-up fees

Video Tutorial

Click here to view our video tutorial overview of how Church Membership Online works with Call-Em-All.

4/3/2014 8:54:00 AM
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