Tuesday, July 22, 2008

ChMS - Five Talent Church

If you haven't already, you MUST read the summary of what we are looking for. This is critical to understand my comments. The vendors being reviewed work hard to provide a good product to serve the church, and they should be commended for that. Our needs are very specific, and just because a product isn't right for us does not mean that it isn't perfect for your church. By the same token, just because we didn't like a product does not mean it doesn't meet needs or provide genuine value to its clients. The blurb and "target market" are taken from the capterra list I referenced in my first post. Finally, my thoughts are my own and not an official position of my employer. Thank you.

Five Talent Software - Five Talent Church
Manages membership information, activities and attendance, mass mailings, employee information, fund accounting.
Target Market: Small - Large
Quick Summary - Intriguing, but looks immature

Level 2 Analysis:

How big? - Small
How many customers? - No idea. Forum has *ZERO* posts.`
How long in business? - 2004
Are they profitable? - Almost certainly not.
Technical Details - Windows software with some web integration.

Volunteer Management - No.
Web Integration - Some provision, seems a bit kludgey.
Attendance - Old school bar codes.
Assimilation - No.

Level 2 Summary - I think this product died in the marketplace and is undergoing a resurrection very recently. This website was put up on June 23, and the forum has no posts at all. Live chat is always “offline” and there is very little real information. The upcoming “version 3” will be entirely browser based, which sounds like they failed as a software product and are trying to rebirth as SAAS. The design of the website is nice, so if they put the same attention into the product it could develop into something really nice, but currently it is not nearly mature enough for us.


Ryan said...

Hi Joel, I find your blogs pretty interesting. My name is Ryan Comingdeer, I'm at Five Talent Software and just wanted to reply to a couple of your points above.
Yes we are still considered a small company but we have tripled in size every year since beginning in 2004. We are growing fast and developed an awesome product that we are releasing soon. The windows based version is a great success, but we see a lot of potential features in having everything browser-based so we needed to upgrade the windows based to the browser-based version. During the push to browser-based we saw that as a great time to re-brand. So we did re-brand ourselves because of this and because we started offering more than just Church Management Software (Five Talent Software). The marketing guru's wanted to keep things consistent. We have always been in the black, however we do not consider ourselves as highly profitable because we try to keep our costs down for the churches and therefore we are making just what we need to live on and re-invest in the company and make sure it is serving the clients to the best of it's potential.

Forums - True enough... want to make a post??? Most of the churches we serve are pretty busy doing their own thing and don't have a lot of time to post in our forums... I guess you could look at it as they have no questions or complaints about the software :)

On another note, if you are a bit of a techy... you will find our new version very interesting. It is developed in Silverlight 2.0, with 5 new technologies from Microsoft (LINQ, Dependency Injection, Data Services, Dynamic GUI building...) We have received a lot of interest (from Microsoft and partners) because we are blazing a new trail of new coding practices... we are doing this all to serve the church and make sure we are increasing the outreach, discipleship and reporting of each church! Give me a call anytime at (800) 770-1868 ext 2 and I can talk to you more about what we can and can't do.

Sorry - I did delete my first comment, had a typo in our phone number.

renewingmind said...

Hey Ryan,

Thanks for reading! It looks like I did my research while you were in the midst of the transformation between Soul Management and Five Talent. I'm really glad to hear you guys are profitable, that's important for the long term viability of any company.

I'll try to make some time to do a better review of Five Talents in the future, right now I've been out for a couple of weeks and I'm buried.