Now that we’ve covered security areas, your staff are set up, and your people are imported, it’s time to start looking at putting your people in Groups and how to set up Meetings.
Groups allow you to sort your People into whatever categories your church requires. Some common types of Groups include youth, young adults, small and bible study groups, and church regulars, and can also be populated based on specific parameters. Once your people are categorized, you can send group-specific emails and text messages, track attendance, view statistics and much more. Groups make managing the week-to-week processes more straightforward and less time-consuming.
Once Groups are set up, you can schedule Meetings, which will be covered in this Part.
Groups are fundamental to organizing people in UCare. Whether you are a multi-site church or starting up with room for growth, Groups will be important in tracking attendance, creating meetings, categorizing and sub-categorizing various ministries, assigning groups to ministry leaders and sending emails to members of specific groups.
You may have followed the steps in the previous document regarding importing groups from a CSV. If not, you can create a new Group by clicking + New → Group.
From there, you can set up the Group as you need.
When creating a new Group, you can specify its Type. Doing so will make it easier to find later as you can filter your Groups by Type. You can set these Types as you wish, but some common types include church, small groups, kids, teams, young adults, etc.
Once you’ve set the Group’s Type, you can name it, add a description and fill in where the group is located; however, the description and where are optional. You can set additional details by clicking More details. We will cover these options later. Set your security restrictions to limit who can view the Group using Restricted access.
Groups consist of two kinds: regular and search. Regular Groups are populated manually by adding or removing people, while Search Groups use a set of parameters. We will cover Search Groups later, so we will leave the Group on the Add and remove group members manually setting. Click Save when done.
Once a group has been created, you can find it by clicking Groups in the navbar:
Groups will display by Type; use the dropdown menu at the top to filter your Groups to find the one you want. You can, alternatively, just go ahead and search the Group Name using the Search function.
Tags will specify whether the group is a Search Group.
Click the Group Name to view, edit or add people. If the Group is regular, i.e., not a search group, you can add people using the Add people button. If you need to edit the Group, click the options button in the top right.
Once you begin to record attendance, these statistics will be displayed next to each Group member. Now, let’s look at Meetings.
In preparation for your first service with UCare, we will walk you through creating your main Meetings. Once a meeting is created, it can be set to repeat, ensuring you only make new meetings as needed. Meetings are your primary source of attendance tracking and are an excellent way to gauge the health of different Groups and how often members connect.
Before a Meeting can be created, please ensure the Groups involved are created first, as these will be linked to the Meeting. We recommend a Group of your Sunday attendees when preparing for your first service. This can be called Church Regulars or something of the sort.
To create a new Meeting, click + New → Meeting:
This will take you to the New Meeting screen:
From here, you can Name the Meeting. For this example, we’ll create a Meeting for a Sunday service. Once named, we assign which Group will participate in this Meeting: our Church Regulars.
We will leave the Record check in toggle activated. This will allow you to use the Check-in feature for this Meeting; we will cover Check-ins in the next Part of the Getting Started Guide.
The Meeting not held can remain deactivated. You will only tick this if a Meeting is ever cancelled; this would typically be done using Edit Meeting instead of when creating a new one.
You can go ahead and specify the date of the first meeting.
Once you’ve set a date, you can select how often the Meeting will repeat. As this is a Sunday service, we will set it to repeat Weekly:
But, as you can see, you have many options for how often a Meeting repeats.
If you choose to track attendance, you can send an email reminder to the person responsible by searching for their profile.
Use the Add description button to add details about the Meeting and set the security permissions for who can access the Meeting information.
You can click Save when you are done.
Once your Meeting is saved, you can access it from the navbar by clicking Meetings:
Your Meetings will show by date but can be filtered to display by Group or Month.
As this Meeting was set to repeat, UCare will create the next Meeting closer to its date. You can create the next meeting in advance if you choose to plan ahead. To do so, click the Meeting name, and select Create next meeting next to the Repeats heading:
Now that you’ve created your Groups and Meetings, we'll look at Check-ins in the next Part.