In many cases, when a church switches to Shining Light Technologies software, data in an existing program or file must be imported to the Shining Light Tech directory. The following step by step instructions can be used to prepare the data for import and then import the data.
- If existing data is in another program, search the help documentation for the program to see how to export the data in CSV (comma separated values) format.
- If existing data is in a table in a document such as PDF or Word, copy and paste the table to an Excel file.
- If existing data is in paragraph form (e.g. the way a printed directory might appear), change the data to table form. Note that search and replace can be used to automate the process (e.g. replace all paragraph marks with commas). Then copy and paste table form and save as CSV or Excel.
- Open the CSV/Excel file in Excel.
- Rearrange the columns and add columns so that the resulting set of columns is:
- Set the StatusID: 1 = Not Interested, 2 = Visitor, 3 = Occasional Attender, 4 = Regular Attender, 5 = Active Member, 6 = Inactive, 7 = Shut-in, 8 = Absent Member, 9 = Prospect, 10 = Unknown.
- Set the FamilyRoleID – 1 = Family Member (i.e. child), 2 = Head of Household, 3 = Helper. Arrange the rows of data so that the Head of Household is listed first.
- Set the DateAdded for every record to today’s date unless the actual date added is known.
- Replace all blank cells with ‘-’.
- Search for reserved characters (apostrophes, quotes, commas) and replace with alternative character.
- If birthday does not include a year (e.g. “7/18″), move the birthday to the notes column since birthdate column requires a year.
- If the list of people to import are in a group add a column called “Group” with the group name in each row (e.g. “Teen Sunday School”).
- Save the Excel file as a CSV file.
The Reach Tool is a free tool available to both Shining Light Technologies users and non-users. Use the Reach Tool to determine the amount of literature needed for an outreach campaign, to assess demographics in a geographic area, to determine how many people your church can reach, to analyze a potential area for a new church plant, and more.
Learn how to use the Shining Light Technologies software to upload a file as a resource and then include a link to the file in a broadcast email to a group.
A Community Outreach Event is an opportunity for your church to show the love of Christ and share the Gospel with the community.
View the presentation at http://shininglighttech.com/resources/training/CommunityEvent.pdf.
A planning checklist and sample list of games is available at http://shininglighttech.com/resources/training/CommunityEvent.xls. Note that there are multiple worksheets (pages) in the Excel file.
The Shining Light Technologies Groups component has been upgraded to a new interface. Learn more by watching the following videos:
Door-to-Door visitation results can be entered house by house using the Shining Light Technologies mobile application. While walking from one house to the next house, results can be entered with just a few clicks on your mobile device. The following video shows how to use this optional feature.
House by House Visiting
An automatic email notification can be sent when a visit is assigned to an outreach team member. The following video shows how to use this optional feature.
Assigned Visit Email Alert
To enable the automatic email alert for visit assignments, go to the Admin window, select Edit Church, and check the “Email Outreach Team Member When Visit Assigned” checkbox.
Small resource files can be uploaded directly to the Shining Light Tech server. Larger files must be uploaded to the server that hosts your church website due to space limitations on the Shining Light Tech server. In order to set up large file upload, you will need the FTP (File Transfer Protocol) information for your church website. This information can be obtained from your hosting company.
Upload Resource (default option)
A missionary’s latest prayer letter can be uploaded as a graphic to be displayed on the missionary’s profile page. The following tutorial video shows how to upload the graphic and create a cropped image for display in the missionary profile. Use JPEG images (.jpg) for missionary prayer letters.
Upload Missionary Prayer Letter
An automatic email notification can be sent when a group member misses multiple weeks in a row. The following video shows how to configure and use this optional feature.
Attendance Email Alert
Here is a sample of the email notification: