In the world of ChMS’ (Church Management Software), probably the least flashy of all the features is the financial element. However, it happens to be one of the more practical elements that a ChMS has to offer. Not only during tax time and some of the daily operations of the church, but often for the members as well.
The feature set included in the many different ChMS’ vary, so for the sake of arguing the finer points of a using a ChMS for your church, we’ll be using By the Book as a case example.
Now, let’s dive into the various functions and features that a ChMS has to offer in the way of church financials.
First and foremost, I think it should be stated that most ChMS’ will not replace Quickbooks or other such accounting solutions. Capturing budgeting information, writing expense checks, and creating income statements should usually be left to these financial niche apps. A ChMS will only enhance, highlight, and extend what you are already using. In the case of By the Book’s Roll Call, you can batch import your deposit journal entries. A great way to “connect” data that you’ve already entered.
This is where your ChMS financial arm is really going to shine. Using By the Book’s Roll Call and Honor Roll together, you can:
- Create giving funds
Missionaries, building funds, etc…
- Enter contributions based on name, envelope number or check reader
These kind of features can really streamline your accounting process.
- Enter split donations
This can make it super easy for your church members to give once—but to multiple funds.
- Print year end giving statements for US and Canada formats
Tax season is stressful enough. This make it much easier!
- Print receipts for individual gift
Special guests? Special offerings? This is a nice option to have.
- Track appeals
A nice way to see how fundraising is going.
- Email your year end giving statements
This can be a really good feature—especially if your membership is very tech savvy.
- Create donation statistic reports
I’m a sucker for this kind of stuff. I like seeing a dashboard of info to see what’s going on.
- Set up recurring contributions
- Customize donations receipts and create custom reports
If you can’t make your ChMS fit your style, maybe you need a new ChMS?
There can be more features than this—just as there are more features with By the Book—but this should give you a good idea of the kind of benefits a ChMS provides when it comes to contributions.
Does your church have a building fund? Maybe you support different missionaries or missions around the world? Why not make it easier for your congregation to get plugged into giving!
A ChMS with the ability to setup pledges can be super awesome for this.
Imagine if you could:
- Create multiple/unlimited pledge campaigns for your church?
- Create multi-year pledge campaigns?
- Record individual pledges?
- Automatically connect giving with a pledge made?
- Print pledge progress letters?
- Create pledge status reports?
Behold the power of a good ChMS.
ChMS Financials FTW!
When you first begin to look a ChMS’ financial features, it can feel a little dry. But when you really begin to dig deep, you quickly realize that a ChMS like By the Book—for example—can offer helpful tools for the church office and creative features that empower the church congregation.