Why are we making the
On 25th May 2018, new data protection laws were introduced which put greater requirements on churches to manage, protect and dispose of peoples personal data in an appropriate manner. Since then, we have been looking at ways to make the process easier for both members, and us whilst also modernising our communications making the most of current social media platforms.
Church Suite consists of two parts:
Church suite – the administrative system holding all church member data, the church calendar, events, small groups and the children’s modules. This has restricted access to just those with leadership positions within the church who need this information and even then, only to the modules needed to perform their roles (no blanket permissions).
My Church suite – this is the member facing part of the system which all members can access once sent a login by the church office and is tailored to specific members options so that no two homepages will look the same.
What are the benefits for church members?
- Church suite will ensure we are using and storing your personal information in an even more secure way than before.
- My Church suite will make it easier for you to opt in and out of receiving different types of information in compliance with the latest data protection legislation.
- My Church suite will ensure church communications are all in one place (no more trawling through emails, WhatsApp, Facebook trying to find information)!
- My Church suite will make it easier for you to know what is coming up tailored to your specific interest areas.
- My Church suite will make it easier for you to see what groups you might want to join availability in groups and make it easier to sign up!
What are the benefits for church leaders?
- Church suite will get rid of the need to manage your own mailing lists for groups and enable you to be fully GDPR compliant.
- My Church suite will help connect people within your group better (they can opt in to share certain information with each other such as mobile and email addresses as we did in the good old days of the church directory, which used to contain contact details J).
- Church suite will enable you to create professional ‘event’s’ for meetings with all of the information included and secure.
- Church suite will enable you to create professional ‘event’s’ links which church members can then use to invite friends and family thereby reducing the need for so much printed publicity.
- Church suite makes it easy to send invitations and messages to particular target groups rather than spamming everybody in the church.
- Church suite enables you to print flyers for your group containing all the information about your group.
- Church suite makes it easy to track attendance to see whether people might be drifting or going through a difficult time.
What is the timetable for rolling this out?
We have actually been using Church suite behind the scenes now for just over a year. However, we would now like as many church members as possible to get the My Church suite App on their smart phones, laptops, computers or tablets and set their communication and privacy options by Sunday 4th April.
From week commencing 19th April, the options you have made regarding the types of information, news and events that you would like to be kept informed about will come into effect so that your My Church suite app is properly tailored to your options.
We will continue developing how we use Church suite providing coaching for leaders and groups over the coming weeks and months.
In addition, there are additional modules, which we may add on in the future including ‘bookings’, ‘giving’, and ‘rota’s’ all aimed at easing the administrative burden on leaders and making information easier to access by members so watch this space!
By Sarah Bradley