Tuesday, September 9, 2008

ChMS - Status Update

Hey all,

I haven't forgotten about this search, I've just hit a huge obstacle: My days only have 24 hours each. If I could resolve that problem, this search would be finished by now...

In addition to trying to land this plane, I have the annual church budget (I'm also the CFO) to put together, and the phone system to replace. Thankfully my team is doing most of the load for the phone system, but it still requires thought and attention.

Back to the database thing:

First, thanks to Tony Dye, Andrew Mitry and Jeffrey Thompson for the work they have put in over the years in this area. I used Tony's articles on Innovative Church IT, and his CMS Wishlist in this process. Mark detailed his process in selecting their database (Fellowship One) at St. Mark's. Jeffrey combined a bunch of threads from the Church IT Roundtable Google Group, and created a very helpful summary of needs and requirements.

At this point I am trying to combine all of the information from those sources along with the requests my users made (I'll share those later) into a guided demo that I can have each of the three remaining vendors give us. The guided demo (we direct, they show us) will allow us to compare the solutions directly, and see where each of them meets our needs, exceeds our needs, or falls short. I also have to call the references for each of the products and get a feel for how they each fit in the church environment. That data, coupled with their answers from the 26 questions I gave them, coupled with the demo should bring us to a decision point and get us started on implementation with one vendor.

So, the list goes on. But now, my wife is here to take me to lunch. I'm outta here!


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