Remain efficient across multiple locationsTECHNOLOGY Thursday, September 1st, 2011
Church For All Nations is multisite and interstate in using technology to serve its members.
From its beginnings in the basement of a home on the west side of Colorado Springs, CO, Church For All Nations has always looked to grow and stay on the cutting edge. Today, with an average attendance of about 2,200 each weekend and spread across four locations (two in Colorado Springs; one in Littleton; and one in Liberal, KS), Church For All Nations is a burgeoning multisite congregation that continues to serve its members in a multitude of ways.
Though its growth has been a blessing, it has faced the same challenge shared by many growing multisite churches: the need to be efficient and streamlined without losing touch with individuals across multiple locations, while also branching out beyond the church community to reach new people for Christ. This is where technology has helped bring all four campuses closer together.
Problems to work though
Having four campuses spread out over three cities and two states offers a unique set of problems. For one, trying to track attendance of families at numerous services, Life Groups, and student ministry groups can be difficult. The need to organize all this information at one location also had to be examined and considered before the situation could be resolved.
“We started researching church software and saw that Church Community Builder (CCB) offered many solutions to issues we faced,” says the church’s Carrie Pendleton. “We were excited about the possibility of connecting with this system, with one of the overriding factors being the people oriented approach it provides.”
She adds, “Being able to communicate and connect with people more efficiently across all of our campuses from Colorado to Kansas was of utmost importance.”
As Church For All Nations has grown, the number of families that attend the church has also increased. With the growth in children came new challenges of keeping them safe while attending children’s ministry, youth ministry, or other young adult programs, as well as tracking who was attending which group. The children’s check-in process that CCB offered and its multisite abilities were met with enthusiasm.
Web-based was important
“Some of the key factors that were important to us were that our new system was web-based, it could accommodate multisite churches, and it could break-down check-in for different ministries such as children, youth, and Life Groups, across multiple church locations,” notes Pendleton.
“The use of barcode scanners has been great and keeps the process moving quickly,” she says. “Another great feature is group promotion. This allows us to mass move children to their new class, which is really beneficial each year when children move up a grade in school. We also use multi-site check-in. Through CCB, each campus runs check-in separately from other campuses yet remains within a single core database, which is very important. This has allowed us to track attendance at each of our locations and to have accurate numbers of who is attending each week and who we might need to check in on to make sure things are alright.”
Another area that is vital to church leaders is keeping up on new attendees and following up to make sure they don’t fall through the cracks.
“Our new system has some great reports for tracking families,” says Pendleton. “We can now easily see when parents or children have missed services so we can proactively connect with them to make sure all is well. We are also able to easily identify first-time visitors and quickly initiate a follow-up process to help them feel welcomed and cared for.”
Overall, Pendleton says their new technology has afforded the congregation the opportunity to interact with families on a regular basis and keep track of when its members attend services, as well as provided parents with a feeling of security. Additionally, they have all the necessary management tools and solutions necessary to effectively empower four church locations within a single system.
In recent years, multisite churches have become one of the fastest areas of church growth and continues to be one of the best ways for churches to expand and reach out within and beyond their communities. Church For All Nations has done a great job of leveraging technology to support a multi-site strategy for reaching more people with the Good News.