Topic: What app would help your church?

I've been pondering this question for awhile.  I'll have some extra time in a couple of months and wanted to pickup a side programming project just for kicks.  It is intended to be a fully executed side project (ie: something that could legitimately be used and not started and stopped halfway through).

For those that are familiar with church operations, is there a web or desktop app that would make life way easier?

For my church, I know there's an issue with making sure volunteers know their assignments and show up when scheduled.  That lends itself to a volunteer management-type app.  I know this functionality is included in a lot of church management solutions, but I don't want to go that hardcore.  I just want to solve one specific problem that would be beneficial to most churches.  That's all the time I have for.  wink

But if you got any other ideas, let them fly . . .

Thanks,
-Alex

Re: What app would help your church?

What you are suggesting for your own church would be really useful here too Comechi.

Having an app that will automatically email and/or SMS people on a volunteer roster and remind them would be brilliant!
Even better would be an app that would automagically generate the roster!
(Can you tell that I hate preparing rosters!)

Cheers

Last edited by NeilA (2007-04-23 17:03:48)

NeilA.   Blue Mountains, Oz  - http://westserve.org - Blog, Christianity, Tech stuff

Re: What app would help your church?

I'll keep you in mind if I decide to go with the idea.  wink 

You say the idea would be great for your church.  I'm curious to know how big it is and how many volunteers you typically manage?

Re: What app would help your church?

Thanks Alex.. ;-)

My church (in Australia) is around 1200 big, but my area of responsibility is for a congregation about 250 strong with around 50+ people involved in a volunteer role.

Cheers

NeilA.   Blue Mountains, Oz  - http://westserve.org - Blog, Christianity, Tech stuff

Re: What app would help your church?

Alex,

We're actually neck deep in designing exactly what you are talking about. But it's more of a larger scale. Our ap will be overall Volunteer/Group/Team management with a primary emphasis on Servant Teams within a church. WE come from a mobile church background and the toughest thing we face week after week is group management and group communication. Because group management theory is basically the same no matter what you do, the structure/framework we are setting up should be able to be used in any volunteer or group activity from co-ordinating Sunday morning servant teams to little league baseball.

We're through the functionality phase and are working on UI with coding to start in a month or so. We currently have 1 designer and 2 coders on the project. What are your strengths in regards to coding (front-end/back-end).

That said there is also another project that is similar, but an open-source host-your-own type of software that is more for ministry managment. It does some of what our app will do and I've taken a test ride through it and it looks really good. They may also need some help in bug fixing etc..
http://godbit.com/forum/viewtopic.php?id=2038 We're hoping to have lunch with these guys in the next week or so.

I dream with an XML intereface

Re: What app would help your church?

Hey tank,

Man, way to potentially kill my project.  wink  But that is really interesting.  Is this intended to be a commercial solution?  From the struggles your church has, it sounds like your solution will be a cross between Basecamp and <insert team management application here>?

As for as my own coding strengths, my formal background is in C-based languages, most recently C#.  But for this "side" project of mine, I was planning on learning RoR to see what all the craze is about.  wink

I'm intrigued though by your solution . . .

-Alex

Re: What app would help your church?

NeilA wrote:

Thanks Alex.. ;-)

My church (in Australia) is around 1200 big, but my area of responsibility is for a congregation about 250 strong with around 50+ people involved in a volunteer role.

Cheers

Australia!  I initially got more excited about the idea of volunteer management after talking with a friend who interned at Hillsong Church for a few years.  She said they wrote an in-house solution for it that worked wonders.

Re: What app would help your church?

comechi wrote:
NeilA wrote:

Thanks Alex.. ;-)

My church (in Australia) is around 1200 big, but my area of responsibility is for a congregation about 250 strong with around 50+ people involved in a volunteer role.

Cheers

Australia!  I initially got more excited about the idea of volunteer management after talking with a friend who interned at Hillsong Church for a few years.  She said they wrote an in-house solution for it that worked wonders.

Yeah, well groups as large as Hillsong are few and far between in Oz, and I suspect their approach probably doesn't scale down particularly effectively. ;-)

NeilA.   Blue Mountains, Oz  - http://westserve.org - Blog, Christianity, Tech stuff