Diana Query, the business administrator at Belin Memorial United Methodist Church in Murrels Inlet, S.C., has decades of experience that help her with her job. But she still sees big value in connecting with other locals who use the same church management software she uses. That’s why she decided to host an ACS Technologies User Group at her church.
“As a user, you look at the applications differently than you do in a situation where you’re selling it and providing customer service—and I’ve been on both sides,” she said. In her previous career, Diana worked in banking and for nonprofits, doing both accounting work and sales. She said she’d always found user groups valuable.
“To be able to get a network together with other people that are doing the same job as you in the same room, it’s much more beneficial,” she said. “There aren’t always a lot of opportunities nearby for us to network with other churches. This just makes sense.”
Learn what others are doing
The first meeting of the Murrels Inlet and Myrtle Beach-area user group was well-attended by nearly 20 individuals from area churches in just its first gathering. Diana said there are many things she’s excited about as the group grows and continues to meet.
“I’m looking forward to understanding from other people what they may be doing with ACS that we’re not doing. I’m looking to be able to assist other churches with some of the economies and timesavers that we’ve put into our system and the reasons that we’ve done things,” she said.
“I’m doing it also because at Belin here, we are a large church, and we have the benefit of staff to do things. But some of the smaller churches, they’re just so busy trying to get things done; they don’t have time to set up and say, ‘is there an easier way to do it?’ I’m hoping to say ‘you know what, we found an easier way to do it,'” Diana said. “Every idea may not always work in every church, but it’s helpful to have that information, to know that if you do this, it could make things easier.”
Speaking louder as a group
Diana said she also understands that user groups speak more authoritatively when asking for enhancement requests to products.
“I’m hoping that when we go to ACS Technologies and say, ‘we need things different,’ they’ll know it’s not just Belin asking, but it’s a handful of churches that’s looked at other solutions. We will be able to say this is why we need it and we think other churches could use it.”
“I also hope to get some input from some other folks, there are some modules that we’re not using, so I’d like to hear, is anybody else using them? Or, if you’re not using them, why not?”
To get more information about starting or joining an ACS Technologies user group in your area, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Talk back: What issues would you want to discuss with a group of your peers? Tell us in the comments!