When I think of sales reps, I think of Billy Mays.
I know, I know. Infomercials. But he was a good salesman. Everyone knew him and what he sold. His style worked great on TV, but I would have been frightened to buy OxiClean in real life with him screaming at me.
Good thing most in-person sales reps aren’t like Billy Mays!
When you buy church management software, you’ll most likely work with a sales rep who guides you through buying and training. Church management software is complicated, and it’s a big decision that can set your church back hundreds of dollars.
But first, you need to make sure the software will work for your church! When you find the right solution, it can help make managing finances and members effortless. To ensure you’re completely happy with your new software, ask your sales rep these questions before you decide to buy!
1. “Will the price change if the church changes size?”
Beware of hidden fees. The price quoted during the initial purchase may be fine for today, but what about a year from now? Find out if the software price increases as your church membership grows.
2. “Does it limit the number of records that can be kept for individuals?”
If so, you’ll want to see how close you are to that limit to avoid paying more in the near future.
3. “Does it provide a denominational report for your church?”
While not very common in church management software, this feature could save you a lot of time at the end of each year.
4. “Does it allow you to send mass emails for no additional charge?”
Most email clients limit the number of email addresses you can include in a single email in order to prevent spam, but there are services that remove this roadblock for you. While most third-party services charge you, some church management software solutions allow you to send mass emails without extra fees.
5. “Does it integrate with your preferred online-giving vendor?”
Online-giving not only encourages regular giving, but it can also save you the time of entering that information into your church management software.
6. “Does it support offering envelopes?”
As more churches move to online-giving, some people think offering envelopes will become obsolete—but trends have proved that not to be true. If your church uses offering envelopes, make sure your new software supports this functionality.
7. “Does it allow for easy distribution of contribution statements in your preferred manner?”
Your new church management software doesn’t have to allow every way of distributing contribution statements; it just needs to support your church’s preferred method.
8. “Does it require knowledge of credits and debits?”
The importance of this question depends on the level of financial expertise of your church treasurer and financial secretary. Be sure your finance software is accessible to your volunteers and your staff.
9. “How long does software implementation typically take?”
Some software is easy to get up and running, while others can take weeks. While this may not be a reflection of the usability of the software, it’s best to go in with a clear understanding of the implementation process.
10. “What is the availability of technical support?”
Think about your church staff and volunteers and when they are going to be using the software. Make sure the technical support is available in a timely fashion when they need it.
This blog post is an excerpt from our ebook “106 Questions to Ask before You Buy Church Management Software.” For a complete list of questions to ask your sales representatives and a printable list, download the free ebook by clicking the button below!