Church Management - The Future CMS is "in the Cloud"

Tuesday, November 11, 2014 6:50:00 AM Categories: Ministry & Technology
Rate this Content 1 Votes

Cloud computing seemed like it would be just another passing fad when it materialized a few years ago; however, that fad has grown into a vital facet in the current digital age. As a result, a growing number of Church Management Software (CMS or ChMS) companies are migrating their products from pc-hosted-products to instead being online-hosted.  They are moving to the cloud because the concept is quite simple in that it's a way to access your data from anywhere, via the Internet (or "the cloud"). So what does this shift in technology mean for you and your church?  The focal point of ChMS-cloud-computing is about easy access to data rather than where the servers are located. This results in several key advantages in meeting your church management software needs:

24-hour-per-day access.  By using an Internet connection, any authorized user can access your church management software at any time.  No longer do you have to wait until you get back to your office to access your database.  Now, you can access your data from a coffee shop, a library, your home, or even from 4G mobile Internet access on your smartphone or tablet.

Software as a Service (SAAP).  The traditional ChMS approach was software that resided on your church computer.  This concept was called “software as a product” or SAAP.  With a cloud-based-ChMS this is no longer necessary.  Instead of SAAP, cloud-based ChMS companies provide “software as a service” or SAAS.  This means you don’t have to buy a high-priced-software one time and then pay for new versions and upgrades later down the road.  Instead, you pay for a subscription to their service.  Consequently, when new versions of the software are released or when new features are added, you no longer need to pay for new software.  Your subscription includes the upgrades automatically.    

Full Internet Browser Integration.  It is easy to access cloud-based-ChMS because there is no specific software required.  In fact, all you need is a web browser.  By typing in the correct URL, you can begin accessing your church data immediately.  There is also no learning curve because you already know how to use an Internet browser; therefore, you already have the basic knowledge needed to begin using cloud-based-ChMS right away.

Solid Security and Reliable Backups. In a cloud-based-ChMS, your data no longer needs to be hosted on your own church computer or server.  Instead, it is hosted on the church management software company’s servers.  This means that you don’t have to create backups to protect your data on your own machine. The ChMS company is responsible for all of that so you don’t have to shoulder the burden any longer.  

 

Our church management software company, Churchteams, began in the year 2000, long before “cloud computing” was even a phrase. Yet from the start, we were an online-based church management system.  You might say we were “in the cloud” before “in the cloud” was cool!

Alan Danielson is the Senior Pastor of New Life Bible Church in Norman, Oklahoma. Previously he served as Central Team Leader for LifeGroups at LifeChurch.tv in Edmond, OK, where he led over a thousand small groups on LifeChurch’s thirteen campuses in six different states. He then founded 3Threat.net to help leaders master three essential leadership skills: vision-casting, creating strategy and fostering relationships. Alan is a popular conference speaker and consults regularly with ministries and leaders on topics relating to small groups and leadership. Learn more from Alan at 3Threat.net.