A Massive List of Updates

10/22/2015

We've improved SimpleChurch more in the last year, than in any previous year! You can read about some of the changes below.

Group Finder

  • The SimpleChurch Group Finder is now available to churches. Go to Settings > Groups > Group Finder to enable and configure the Group Finder.
  • Zipcode is added as a searchable field in the Group Finder.
Interactions
  • Interaction formatting in lists is improved, making summary/instruction boxes bigger.
  • Interactions permissions are now more granular. In other words, when creating or editing a role, specific interactions types can be prohibited for a person with that role to view, assign, log / record, edit, and / or delete. For example, a deacon assigned a certain role would be able to assign a counseling phone call or visit to a pastor, but they would be unable to view any counseling-related interactions. 
  • On a group list page, multiple interactions can now be assigned at once to one person. The one person is assigned a separate interaction for each selected individual. The type of interaction is the same (the type selected) and each interaction includes the same 
Mass Contact 
  • You can nickname your twilio.com account phone number(s) while logged in to your twilio.com account. Each outgoing phone number that you create in Twilio costs $1 per month through Twilio. To set up these numbers in Twilio, go to Numbers > Manage Numbers.
  • These numbers display when you send mass SMS text messages and mass voice messages through SimpleChurch’s mass contact feature. In the selection box your twilio.com phone numbers will now be listed by their nickname so long as you nickname those phone numbers in your twilio.com account.
  • When a user sends a mass email through SimpleChurch, the user is sent a notification email confirming that the message has been sent.
  • You now have the option to include yourself on a mass contact message.
  • An image button is added to the WYSIWYG Editor in the mass contact feature, specifically for mass emails. 
  • The unsubscribe message in mass contact emails is now clearer.
Membership / Directory
  • A permission has been added for controlling birthday/age in the directory feature.
  • When viewing a group in SimpleChurch, age is now a field that can be selected to display for the members of the group.
  • Improved address duplicate detection now alerts users to the following field matches when creating a new individual. Also, duplicate detection based on contact information is only run by comparing an individual with individuals outside of their family. 
    • #1: Identical first, preferred and last name
    • #2: Same address
    • #3: Matching cell phone, home phone, and email address
  • Printing a group directory now offers the option to include custom field data for the listed group directory members.
  • A single column text print option (non-PDF) is offered for printing a group directory.
  • In Utilities > Input Giving, the autocomplete box now lists the address next to an individual’s name that displays, in cases when that individual shares a name with another person listed in the search. Both individuals would have their addresses displayed, as a way to differentiate them.
  • Pictures can now optionally be added in printed group directories. 
  • 5 line address labels are now smaller to fit correctly.
  • The active/inactive group status of an individual is more obvious on an individual's view screen.
  • We have added more robust text formatting by allowing HTML in group descriptions.
  • An individual’s profile picture is now included in the individual print option.
  • Fixed issue where people weren't grouped by family in a printed group directory if the primary family member was not in the printed group.
  • Family sorting issues are resolved and directories wrapping functions correctly.
  • Make address labels only be to the individual, even if they are in a family, if they are the only one in group.

Giving

  • In an individual’s giving records, each online gift made by an individual is now marked to indicate that the gift was indeed made via SimpleChurch Online Giving.
  • Filters are added to giving reports for both online and non-online (cash and check) gifts.
  • A check can be added for an individual contribution record that was entered where the check was not originally attached before saving.
  • In Settings > Giving > Edit Giving Categories, you can now delete giving categories (funds) that have never had contributions made to them.
  • Giving categories can now be deactivated. Go to Settings > Giving > Edit Giving Categories to deactivate a giving category (or categories). This means that while giving attached to deactivated categories still displays in giving reports, deactivated categories will not appear in the list of available categories in the giving category drop-down list in Utilities>Input Giving.
  • The notes field for recorded contributions now displays when exporting giving via the Utilities > Export tool.
  • Editing a batch, I can click a link to see entries for that batch form past input sessions
  • Now view the existing giving entries in a batch when working on an existing batch that contains previously-inputted entries from a prior session.
  • A filter is added for online and non-online gifts in the “By Individual” giving report found at Reports > Giving > By Individual.
  • A more straightforward warning is added when leaving the giving entry page.
  • Giving batches are now editable.
  • Individual gifts / contributions are now editable.
  • The Giving Overview report now offers a Quickbooks export for the downloaded version of Quickbooks (not the cloud-based version). This updates the accounts for your giving funds in Quickbooks based on the totals from the related giving funds / accounts in SimpleChurch. Simply export the Quickbooks file in SimpleChurch in the Giving Overview report and import the file into Quickbooks.
    In Settings > Giving > Quickbooks Export Settings, map your SimpleChurch giving funds / categories with your giving funds / accounts in Quickbooks to ensure that the Quickbooks Export is accurate.
  • Giving batches are now sorted by date received, not date created.
  • Batch entries can be sorted by last name and by first name.
  • A deposit slip option is added to batches.
  • The Giving by Individual report now offers a minimum filter, in addition to the existing maximum filter for giving amount.
  • Batches are now offered through SimpleChurch’s giving input tool. Batches are optional, and they can be saved and re-opened and finished at a later time.
  • The giving source (online, manual entry, check scanner, and CSV giving import) now displays in a batch.
  • Members cannot view their own check images when viewing their own individual giving history.
  • Viewing an individual’s giving history now includes the giving category.
  • Giving reports now display notes entered for anonymous giving records.
  • The Individual Giving Report now offers an “Add to Group” feature, where all individuals in the report can be added to a specific group.
  • Alpha-numeric envelope numbers are now handled more accurately.
  • The group filter now works properly and “sticks” when creating giving statements.
  • The print and export formatting for the Anonymous Giving Report is corrected.
  • Fixed giving statement not including person's name if person had no address.
  • In batches, anonymous gifts display correctly, listed with the name “anonymous”.
Child Check-In
  • Children can be checked in to multiple groups.
  • In the SimpleChurch iOS app, a parent can check a child into multiple groups.
  • Children in new families can be checked in to multiple groups.
  • While entering new families in the child check in interface, you can now collect contact info for parents you add and note the birthdays and gender for children.
  • You can now utilize group filters with child check in stations. Go to Settings > Child Check-In > Check-In Stations. Click a check in station, and in the drop down box you can select to display only groups which are assigned a certain group property. For example, you can create a group property for every campus. So, you could create check in stations for different campuses, and then limit each check in station to display only the groups that are tied to their particular campus, using group filters as the means to do so.
  • When adding new children through the IOS Check In App, you can choose to add new children as full accounts or as visitors.
  • The iOS Check-In App now allows you to choose if newly added children get added to the currently selected family.
  • Now, you can add and edit child check-in notes in a person’s individual profile. 
  • All family members now display in child check-in. This allows adult volunteers to search for their own name and check-in themselves.
  • The "Add another child" button is more obvious when adding a family in Child Check-In.
  • The iOS Check-in App now uses the preferred name for children.
  • Families that are created through Child Check-In now appear in the main search index.
  • Adding multiple new people no longer automatically checks them in to the same group mistakenly.
  • A fix is implemented for a scrolling issue in Child Check-In when the onscreen keyboard is enabled, but while Child Check In is not in kiosk mode.
  • You can now only create individuals through Child Check In when this add individual feature is enabled through Child Check In.
Reports

  • The fields “Died On” and “Baptized On” have been added to Advanced Search.
  • Visitor lines are added to the aggregate attendance roll print option. In other words, printing attendance rolls for an aggregate - a collection of groups / classes - now includes visitor lines for listing visitors to those particular groups / classes.
  • The print option is added to the Sessions attendance table report.
  • The Anniversaries report is added for custom date fields. 
  • Last Attended Date is added to the groups field list, directories, and CSV exports.
  • The print option is added for the aggregate reports list.
  • A PDF export is added for the absences attendance report.
  • In Advanced Search, search actions are not offered until search results display.
  • The print option is added for the individual attendance report.
  • Add subscribed status to CSV export.
  • Email address is added as a field in the birthday report export.
  • A results count is displayed for the birthday and anniversary reports results.
  • A join date is added to the groups export, indicating the date on which the individuals joined a particular groups.
  • You can now use the absences report to view absences for an entire aggregate of groups / classes.
  • The giving by individuals report now displays the batch name.
  • Group count now displays in search results when searching for a particular group / groups.
  • A search option is added to most select lists containing a lot of items.
  • Advanced Search uses select lists with predefined values for custom fields which are predefined lists.
  • Advanced Search refreshes results when a value is chosen from a date picker.
  • The issue is corrected where you could not type <empty> into custom date fields in Advanced Search. This now functions correctly, allowing you to use Advanced Search to view a list of individuals who have no values listed in a particular field.

Read more

Scheduled Messages and More Mass Contact Improvements

09/24/2014

We've long given you the ability to send email, voice, and SMS messages to your members and prospects. Today, we're announcing quite a few helpful improvements to this feature.

Scheduled Messages

When you go to the Mass Contact Utility, you can create your message as usual, complete with groups, body, attachments, voice message, etc. But, at the bottom, you can now choose to schedule this message for later sending, and we'll send it, just as you created it, on that date and time.

Should you wish to edit it, just select it from the select list of scheduled message on the right of the contact page and make your changes, and save it. Please note, this list only appears when you have scheduled messages that haven't been sent you.

In-Browser Voice Recording

Also, for people using the most recent couple versions of Firefox and Google Chrome, they can now record voice messages right in the browser. When they click the "Launch Voice Recorder" link, instead of having to download a little app and run it, they'll be able to record the message in their browser.

Lastly, you can now remove attachments from emails, when you're creating your message.

Read more

Updates: Robust Duplicate Detection, Last Attended Search, and More

09/19/2014

Robust Duplicate Detection

When adding/editing a person, it used to be that we would alert you if there were another person who had the same name as the person you were adding/editing. This helped to prevent duplicates. But it relied on you having exactly the same name for the two people. So, a "Joe Marks" and "Joseph Marks" wouldn't match as a duplicate, even if they had the same email address or physical address.

Now, our duplicate detection works with all of the following information: names (including preferred name), physical address (including full/abbreviated street suffixes i.e. "st" vs "street"), email addresses, and home and cell phone numbers.

However, we do not show you people with duplicate information if they are in the same family grouping, since many people share contact information in a family. If a duplicate is suspected, we show you a bright red bar at the bottom of the screen with links to the suspected duplicate records.

Last Attended On

Now, when viewing a person's profile, you will see a "Last Attended On" date in the dates section. This pulls from the person's attendance history and displays the most recent time they attended. Additionally, you can search for people using this and other criteria under Advanced Search.

New "Add/Edit Pictures" Permission

There is a new permission you can give your roles to allow users to add/edit pictures. So, if you don't want people to be allowed to edit all of the information on a person, but you do want them to change pictures, you can do that now. An update of the iOS App has been submitted and should be out by October 1st with support for this. The web version already supports this.

Miscellaneous

  • There is now a "Submitted Electronically" checkbox on attendance roles for classes that submit attendance via the App, but still want to alert the attendance person that they didn't forget.
  • When adding families through child check-in, you can now add children with different last names than their parent.
  • The Giving Entry page now has a running total at the bottom, even when not in batch mode.
  • The Aggregate Attendance Report can now be printed.


Read more

Child Check-in: Kiosk Mode, Add Families, and More

08/22/2014

In our continuing effort to make SimpleChurch the powerful tool that you need it to be, we've added quite a few improvements that have been requested.

Kiosk Mode

Now, under child check-in settings, you can choose to enable kiosk mode. This will let you launch child check-in in a way that there are no other menu options on the screen, and you can then set your browser to be full screen. This way, you can have unattended check-in stations - no workers required!

Another setting you can enable for use with Kiosk Mode is the on screen keyboard. This makes it so that you can use a touch screen computer with your unattended check-in station.

Add Families

Another often requested feature is the ability to add new families right from the check-in screen. Well, you can do this now! You can click the Add Family link to start the process. SimpleChurch will walk you through adding the primary member, adding the children with their badge notes, and getting them checked into their groups.

Under settings, you can enable this feature and choose which group newly created families are placed in for easy follow up. This also works seamlessly with kiosk mode.

Lookup & Contact

There's a new option on the Child Check-in screen: Contact. You can now look up one or more groups and see which children are checked into each of them. And, right from there, you can SMS all of those children's parents at once.

RFID Mode Changes

Before, you used to have to choose between using only labels, or only RFID cards. Now, under settings, you can configure this differently. You can choose to use RFID cards along side of labels. This will allow your members to quickly look up their families just by waving the card. But, visitors can also use the normal lookup method.

Additionally, you can still use the fully RFID method, where cards are required for checkout. This way, the system keeps track of which children were checked in with which card, and shows this to the child care worker.

We hope these new features make it easier for you to concentrate on people and ministry, and less on the small details. Your suggestions are invaluable in helping SimpleChurch continue to improve!

Thank you,
The SimpleChurch Team.

Read more

New Feature: Attach Files to People

08/12/2014

You can now attach files to people from their profile page. Just drag and drop a file onto the documents section! Files can be deleted from the edit page.

There are new permissions to control viewing and editing files that you can add to your existing roles to allow people to use these features.

Read more

Child Check-in Improvements

04/01/2014

You can now set the number of labels you need printed when checking in a child. This is helpful for situations where the child and a diaper bag both need labels. Additionally, you can now check a child into multiple groups at check-in time. Simply click all of the groups the child needs to be at, and they will be marked present for them. The first group you select will be the one that prints on the badge.

Read more

Giving Demographics Report and Deposit Slips

02/28/2014

We've added two new giving reports.

Giving Demographics

You can now see giving broken down by age range for a given date range. Both the age and dates ranges are configurable by going to the Options Drop down and choosing "Filter". This report will show you how much each range gave, what percent of the totals gifts they gave, and what percentage of the total giving people they represent.

Bank Deposit Slip

While you're on the Reports > Giving Page, you can select "Print a Deposit Slip" form the Options Drop down. This will give you a pdf with all cash gifts consolidated to one line, and one check per line. The checks will be identified based on the contents of the notes field. 

Read more

Better. Sleeker. Responsive

02/23/2014

We're pleased to announce the newly designed SimpleChurch!

  • A much cleaner look, with more consistant interface organization.
  • Better use of space - If you have a large screen, we'll use more of it. If you have a smaller screen, everything will reflow and fit nicely.
  • Better mobile support. While there is a native iOS app, and the mobile web version for Android/Windows Phone, these mobile devices can now have a much better experience using the normal SimpleChurch site in their browser.

Read more

Update: Preferred Names, API Access, Dymo 450 Label Printer Support, and More

12/31/2013

You can now set a preferred name for each person. This will be used instead of their given first name, whenever their name is displayed - In SimpleChurch and on reports. The only exception to this is giving reports/letters, which will use the person's given name. You can search for people by their given name and/or their preferred name.

We now have an API!

We've also added Dymo 450 Label Printer Support for the child check-in application.

Read more

Updates: Church Directory

10/03/2013

You can now use SimpleChurch as a directory for your church!

To enable this:

  • go to Permissions and set "Enable Directory?" to "Yes."
  • Choose the group that everyone will be able to see
  • And choose the fields you're allowing everyone to see.
  • Save.

Then, when your members log in, they will see a "Directory" link at the top left where they can see everyone in the group you set.

Read more

Updates: Constant Contact Integration

09/17/2013

You've been able to sync one or more groups with a mailing list in your MailChimp account for a long time. Now, you can do the same with Constant Contact!

To enable this, in SimpleChurch: go to Setting > Services, and click the "Enable" radio button. Authorize your account, Fill in the fields, and you're done!

Then, whenever you add people to the selected groups, they'll be added to Constant Contact

Read more

Add visitors with Families for Child Check-in, and More Group Filtering Options

08/21/2013

Now, when you check in a family, you'll see the option to add a visitor with the family. Just like when you add a visitor for attendance purposes, you can can choose from existing people in your database, or add a "visitor", if the person you're searching for doesn't exist. This works for both label-based and RFID check-in. You can also use this to check-in a child with a person who doesn't have any kids in the system currently.

Read more

Updates: Giving Import, Group Descriptions, Attendance Entry Enhancements, and More

08/17/2013

You can now import giving from a CSV file. This makes it much easier to transfer in giving from PayPal and online giving services like EasyTithe and SimpleGive. This also means that new customers will most likely not have to to pay us to import their data, they can do it themselves!

Read more

Updates: Child Check-in, Search, and Interaction Improvements and More!

07/30/2013

Today, we're pleased to say that we pushed out quite a few changes that answer feature requests that churches have sent in.

Read more

Video: RFID Based Child Check-in Demo

07/15/2013

This video demonstrates how the RFID-based Child Check-in system works.

Read more

Video: Label Based Child Check-in Demo

07/08/2013

This video demonstrates how the label-based Child Check-in system works.

Read more

SimpleChurch for iPhone

07/03/2013

We've had a mobile web app for a long time, and it's a pretty good companion to our full site. But, we knew we needed to make a native App to allow you to take advantage of more of SimpleChurch's powerful features.

Read more

Updates: Merging, Grouped Family Giving, Anonymous Online Giving, Giving Reports Improvements, and Much More

05/03/2013

Merging People

You can now merge two people, and choose which parts of each you wish to keep. You can choose from all of the available fields, pictures, giving, attendance, interactions, roles, and groups. There is a new permission, "merge members" that allows people to access this feature.

The Merge feature is located under "Utilities".

Read more

Updates: Improved Advanced Search and Interaction Filtering

04/24/2013

As of today, when using the Advanced Search, you can choose to find people who are in one of a list of groups, or in all of them.

Read more

Updates: Members Can Update Themselves and Interaction Logging for Session Contact Page

03/21/2013

Members can Update Their Own Contact Information

As of today, if you allow it, anyone in your SimpleChurch account can login and update their information, and, if he/she is the primary member of their family, they can update their family's information. The permissions page now has a new "Global" section.

Read more

Updates: Easier & Faster Child Check-in and Interaction Logging for Mass Contact

02/26/2013

Child Check-in

Many churches have asked about other ways to use Child Check-in, besides using RFID cards. We listened. As of today, you can use labels to keep track of which parent goes with which children - No Cards or other hardware is necessary (besides the label printer).

Read more

Updates: Mobile Web Improvements, Print Labels for Giving Statements, and More

02/04/2013

We've just added some new features to help make everyday tasks with SimpleChurch be even more efficient.

Read more

Update: Print labels with Member Giving Statements

01/17/2013

Since the beginning, you've been able to print end-of-year statements for members, and you could print labels for members. But today, we've added the ability to output statements and labels for just the people that need them. And, we'll also show you who doesn't have an address, so that you can update their record and add it, so that no one is left out. Handling end-of-year giving has never been easier!

Also, we recently added the ability to email statements!

Read more

iPhone Application Update

01/13/2013

We've been working on our native iPhone App, and it's coming together well! We're tentatively planning on having the following features be included in the initial launch.

Read more

Update: Notes on Giving Entries, Mobile Photo Uploads, and More

01/13/2013

By popular request, we've added the ability to add details to giving entries for check numbers, or whatever you wish. This data also shows up on a members giving page.

Read more

Update: Email End of Year Giving Statements

01/10/2013

As of today, you can send your end of year giving statements via email. This was a feature suggestion from one of our churches! It will allow you to email pdf statements to people who have email addresses, and print labels and mailable statements for those that don't.

Read more

Update: Filter groups on member pages

12/07/2012

Recently, we released an updated that added the ability to organize your groups into categories and apply properties. You can read more about it here.

Now, you can filter the groups that appear on a person's view page in the same way you filter groups on the groups page. Just use the filter box in the right column!

Read more

Child Check-in - Now with Label Printing and Child Notes

11/14/2012

Child check-in used to be our most requested feature. After it was added, the most requested feature was label printing. Now, label printing is here.

The system is designed to be used with a Brother QL-570 printer. This printer uses a 2.44" wide label and can be variable in length. When checking in a child, users with the appropriate permissions will be able to add/edit notes for the child. These notes will print on the label, under the child's name.

Both the printer and child check-in work on Windows and OS X. There is a new permission that allows a role to add/edit child notes - assign it to those who need it.

Read more

Native iPhone Application

10/04/2012

We're pleased to tell you that we're working on a native application for the iPhone. We're not ready to say when it will be completed, but it is coming along!

How will it compare to the current mobile web version?
Well some big improvements are: it will be much faster; you won't have to constantly log in; and, it will "feel" like a normal app, because it will be!

- The SimpleChurch Team

Read more

Updates: Organize and Filter Groups with Properties

09/23/2012

SimpleChurch's groups are very flexible and, because of that, many churches end up of with a lot of them - some have over 400! However, this presents a challenge when you need to locate a specific group, or groups of a certain type. You can search groups, but this presupposes that you know the exact name of the group for which you're looking.

Now, you can categorize groups using categories and properties!

Read more

Updates: Child Check-in, Online Giving, iPad Attendance & More

09/13/2012

This writeup has been a long time overdue. We've been continually improving SimpleChurch with some big features, and some smaller ones.

Read more

New Features and Community Feedback

11/11/2011

We're pleased to tell you about quite a few new features that you can start using today to help you do ministry more effectively.

  • We have a completely rewritten mobile site with more features that supports iOS devices (iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch), Android devices, and Windows Phone 7.
  • You can now capture attendance by allowing members to checkin from their smart phones when at church.
  • Members now receive email reminders for interactions that are assigned to them.
  • Editing family address and contact information can now be done in one simple step.

Read more

New Features: Email reminders and more

10/17/2011

One of the features that you've requested is email reminders for interactions. Starting today, you can choose to get a digest of all the interactions assigned to you delivered either daily or once a week. Also, when assigning an interaction, you can set a date by which it should be completed, and this date will be communicated to the assignee. Interactions that are past due will display with an alert icon next to them.

Read more

New Feature: HTTPS Everywhere

01/26/2011

Starting today, whenever you log into SimpleChurchCRM (SCCRM), the address of the page will begin with "https://". What does this mean to you? All of the communication between your computer and SimpleChurchCRM's servers will be encrypted. And your connection isn't just secure when you log in, it is secure everywhere.

We take the sensitivity and privacy of your personal information very seriously, and this is just another step in ensuring that you have a safe and simple experience when using SCCRM.

Read more

New Screencast: Mass Importing/Updating Members

12/01/2010

This instructional screencast covers exporting a group to a .csv file, adding members to the spreadsheet, editing existing members' information, and importing the spreadsheet back into SimpleChurchCRM, thereby updating/adding the members' information.

Read more

New Screencast: Using Groups

11/30/2010

This Instructional screencast covers creating and using groups. Including:

  • reasons for using groups
  • adding members to groups
  • printing groups
  • exporting groups
  • and more.

Read more

New Feature: Voice Broadcasting

10/10/2010

We're pleased to announce that we have added the ability to send out voice messages en masse. When using the "Mass Contact" tool, choose "Voice" as the method of communication. You can then record your voice message, and send it out to as many groups as you have selected. This is in addition to being able to send messages via SMS and email.

Note: this requires a Twilio account. You simply enter your account detail on the settings page once, and then, you're good to go!

Read more

Integration with MailChimp

07/22/2010

We are pleased to announce that SimpleChurchCRM is now integrated with MailChimp - A popular and affordable mass email service. The integration currently consists of syncing all members, new members and members who are updated.

We hope you find this new feature to be helpful. To enable syncing, Navigate to Settings > Services in SimpleChurchCRM, enter your MailChimp API key, and choose the MailChimp list with which you wish to sync.

Read more

We are now accepting customers!

02/20/2010

After a long development and testing period, we are ready to accept customers!. Please contact us for more information, if your church is interested in a powerful and simple solution to your membership, outreach, and attendance management.

Read more