Before we start, here are a couple of tips for getting the most of these apps:
First, one of the most important things you can do is commit to something, learn all about it and use it. We’re biased about the apps we recommend in this episode because these are the ones we use at Ministry Pass!
Also, make sure your entire team is on board, and that everyone is using the apps all of the time. If not, things get dicey really quickly.
App #1: Google Workspace for Nonprofits
The apps inside Google Workspace straightforward and helpful. They include things like Gmail, Google Calendar, Google Docs, and Google Drive. Google actually makes it very easy to use their workspace for nonprofits. And because it’s cloud-based, so everything is always there for the team to access, no need to update or worry about hard drive failures.
The best part? As nonprofits, churches get most of the Google Workspace apps for free or deeply discounted through Techsoup.
App #2: Slack
There are a lot of different ways that you can use Slack. First of all, it helps your team collect conversations all in one place, and you can create threads and channels so all of your teams can talk to each other. At Ministry Pass, we have all of our conversations and channels visible, so different team members can connect with each other and see what’s happening in different departments.
If you’re wondering why Slack instead of email, here are our thoughts on the differences: email is for formal communication with outside members and team members. But for our every day conversations, we use Slack, because email is hard to search and Slack keeps things organized and searchable. Slack isn’t project management software, it’s a day-to-day communication aid. You can download the app on your phone and choose when you do and don’t get notifications, so it’s just as convenient as texting or email. Trust us- this one is worth getting the whole team on board.
App #3: Asana
There are all kinds of project management apps, but we love Asana. Within Asana, you can create different projects, schedules, and sub-projects within each project. It allows you to see at a very high level what’s happening with your teams and the progress on every item. It helps team members remember due dates as well! Asana is super easy to use, and because you can submit your files inside the project, all the links are there and easy to see. Basically, Asana keeps all the things that you need for your projects organized and clean.
One of the main reasons Asana and Slack have worked so well for us is that we’ve required ALL of our people and departments to use these two platforms. We don’t give them an option to use other things. And that creates increased coordination and collaboration within our teams.
App #4: Whereby
We use Whereby instead of Zoom for video conferencing. It’s easier to send invite links, and when people first join, they don’t have a delay or any need to install an app. It’s simple and easy, and especially nice for people who are new to video conferencing because they just have to click a link.
App #5: Sermonary
We are CLEARLY biased on this one, because Sermonary is our sister brand, but there are two ways you can share/collaborate using Sermonary that will make your sermons better coordinated. The first is that you can share the entire sermon file with other pastors or members of your preaching team, and it will pull directly into their Sermonary account. The second way is inside podium mode- there’s a “share” link where you can send your podium mode view to media crew or sound person, so they can follow along as you’re working through your notes in Sermonary. The best part is that it updates in real-time, so that you can more easily coordinate with your live media and worship teams, even as you keep tweaking your sermon.
Bonus Recommendation: Ministry Pass
Okay, we’re biased, and this isn’t really an app, but this is our podcast and we can break the rules if we want to! Even though it isn’t an app, Ministry Pass is still an amazing tool for collaboration. We design our series and calendars so that you can coordinate your content with adults, youth, and kids throughout the year. That way, your entire church can be working through the same parts of the Bible together. We know that kind of planning is a lot of work, and sometimes you don’t have the team or the margin to plan that far ahead. We’re trying to come alongside you and help you plan 6 months in advance so that you can reap the benefits that kind of advanced planning brings- that’s our goal!
What are your favorite apps that your church uses on your team? Put it in the comments on Youtube or tweet us using the hashtag #hellochurchpod