Throughout the years, and as technology changes and progresses, I have found myself using different apps to help me become more productive in ministry. Lately it seems the trend is to have software become more web-based rather than installed locally on your computer. With that in mind, here are 3 web-based apps that help me stay productive in children’s ministry.
Do you like blogs? Do you hate having to visit each of your favorite blogs individually? Well, what if I told you that you can have all of
the new articles from those blogs delivered to you all in once place (and no, not your inbox)!? Feedly is an RSS reader app that does just that. Feedly gained popularity several months ago when Google announced that it was cutting it’s Google Reader app. Everyone was sent on their ways trying to find a replacement. Feedly does what Google Reader did, only much better and with an easy-on-the-eyes platform. Now you can subscribe to your favorite websites and have their content delivered straight to you on Feedly! You can even sort that content into groups or categories. I am subscribed to dozens of children’s ministry blogs and love going on Feedly to see what everyone is posting about. It’s one of the ways I use to develop my leadership skills and to help me think of new ideas. It’s like a free daily children’s ministry magazine!
2. Planning Center Resources
If your church is like mine, you probably have a lot of events happening. Keeping events straight in the children’s ministry area is difficult enough. Combine them with all the other ministries events in the church and you could have a logistical nightmare! Enter, Planning Center Resources. With this application, your church’s staff members are able to reserve dates, rooms, and event resources (tables, chairs, projectors, you name it) for your events. No more guessing if that TV cart you needed for your meeting will be available. Planning Center lets you know what’s available and when it’s available.
If those features weren’t enough, when you reserve resources or rooms for your events, it automatically sends out emails notifying the people in charge of those resources and asks them for their approval. No more walking in on an event happening in the children’s ministry area without your knowledge!
If you have been frustrated with the logistics of event planning or if you feel the communication of event details among staff members needs to be improved, Planning Center Resources is for you!
HootSuite is a software that allows you manage multiple social networking accounts, all in one place. I had used HootSuite several years ago, but never really saw the need for it since I only posted regularly to my personal Facebook and Twitter accounts. These days, however, I manage multiple Facebook profiles and pages as well as multiple Twitter accounts. HootSuite will allow you to control those types of accounts all in one place and even help you schedule posts based on when they will be most effective. HootSuite is free for up to 5 accounts. If you are tired of clicking back and forth and posting on every individual social network you use for your personal life and children’s ministry, take a look at HootSuite!
Do you have a favorite web app that you use? I would love to hear about it! Please let me know in the comment section!