Tag Archives: worshipplanning

Official Launch of Version 5.0

WorshipPlanning.com Home PageIt’s a big day that has been a long time coming.
WorshipPlanning.com version 5.0 is finally live!  Whether your a current subscriber or not, you’ll notice our new snazzy “exterior” pages the moment you go to WorshipPlanning.com.  We’ve got lots of easy-to-find details about what WorshipPlanning.com has to offer, and a very informative 3 minute video that shows version 5.0 in action.

So, what does it mean that version 5.0 is now live?  Check out the questions and answers we imagine you might have:

Q: What is the major change with version 5.0?
A: Other than enhancements to the style of the site, we focused the majority of our efforts on the worship flow page.  This page hasn’t really been updated in years, and it is far-and-away the most used page on the site.  We wanted to make it both easier to use and more flexible.  This video gives you a nice overview of the new worship flow page.

worship flow screenshot

Q: Does this update cost anything?
A: There is no additional charge for this update.

Q: I was already using version 5.0.  What does this mean for me?
A: For several months, version 5.0 has been available in a “beta” for those that wanted to try it before the official rollout.  We are so very grateful for the thousands of users that tried the beta version, many of whom provide excellent feedback (thank you!!!).  Along with the official launch today, we have deployed several updates as a result of the most recent feedback provided.  Other than that, you probably won’t notice any other visual changes.  If you are looking closely, you might notice that the “beta.worshipplanning.com” web address is gone.  Instead, you should just see the regular “worshipplanning.com” address.

Q: I’m not ready to change to version 5.0 yet.  Can I stay with the old version?
A: Yes, for now.  Our goal is to make version 5.0 something that you want to upgrade to.  If you have tried version 5.0 and found things didn’t work the way you wanted, please reach out to us and let us know (if you haven’t already).  If you tried it and didn’t understand how it worked, the new video tutorial we’ve recently published should answer any questions you have about the worship flow.

If you had trouble understanding any other parts of the site, please let us know via the support center.  Eventually, we will be retiring the older version of WorshipPlanning.com because it is expensive to maintain two different versions.  The timeframe for retiring is not yet defined, but it seems like this summer is an excellent time to update on your own.

Q: If I updated to version 5.0, can I go back to the old version?
A: During the beta testing phase, it was possible to change back to the old version if desired, though it might interest you to know that well over 90% of those that tried the new version have stayed with it.  Now that version 5.0 has been officially rolled out, churches will not be able to go back to the older version.  If it is an emergency and you need to switch back, you can reach out to our support team where they have a hard time saying “no” to anything, and they might be able to help you out.

Q: If I sign up for WorshipPlanning.com today, which version will I be on?
A: Starting today, any new church that signs up for WorshipPlanning.com will automatically have version 5.0 enabled.  And as per the previous question, there will not be an option for them to revert to the older version of WP.

We hope you are as excited as we are about the release of WorshipPlanning.com 5.0!

Introducing…WorshipPlanning.com Version 5.0

WorshipPlanning.com V5.0

The long-awaited update to WorshipPlanning.com has launched in “beta” version for anyone with a WorshipPlanning.com account.  So, what’s new in version 5.0?  Aside from updating the look and feel of the entire site, we focused our efforts on making the worship flow page easier and more flexible.  Here’s a brief list followed by a 2 minute video to show you many of the features in action.

Worship Flow Updates:

  • Add elements, songs, people and files to worship flow by drag and drop
  • In-line editing of all worship flow details
  • Down-to-the-second timing for elements
  • Set list view (hides timing details)
  • Add songs directly from SongSelect‘s database (SongSelect(tm) account required).
  • Unlimited person/role specific notes

This update is free for all WorshipPlanning.com accounts.  To get early access to these awesome features and help us beta test, follow the brief instructions on our support site.

Thank You For Voting For Us!

Editors PickReaders Choice

Here at WorshipPlanning.com we are dedicated to providing you a top-notch resource for your church’s planning needs. So, we are thrilled to be recognized in this year’s Best of the Best issue of Worship Leader Magazine!

We were honored with Editor’s Pick AND Readers’ Choice Awards, under the category of Planning Resources. So, thank you for voting for us! And, thank you Worship Leader Magazine for the recognition!

We are looking forward to unveiling more new features and updates soon! Stay tuned!

If you are not yet using WorshipPlanning.com, we invite you to give it a try for 30 days absolutely FREE!

Turn WorshipPlanning.com into a Desktop App

The below is a great post by one of our awesome users – Chad Smith!
Chad is Worship & Media Pastor of Bethany Church, a multi-site church with 4 campuses in Northern NJ. You can find out more about them at www.bethanychurch.tv and www.facebook.com/BethanyRecords

If your worship ministry is anything like mine, you spend a great deal of time on WorshipPlanning.com. With multiple campuses, teams, & services it seems I’m visiting WP dozens of times a day for various reasons. It’s not hard to imagine that for many of us, it stays open as a tab in our browser pretty much all day long.

But with several open tabs, covering several sites, and needing to access the site so often, WP can sometimes get lost in the browser white-noise. Further, with features that work more like an app than a website, it would be great if the features of WP could be accessed like a stand alone app.

That’s where Fluid comes in (Mac OSX only). Fluid allows you take WorshipPlanning.com )or any other web application) and essentially turn it into a native desktop app.

Here’s how easy: Enter the site URL (www.worshipplanning.com), give it a name, and finally give it THIS WP icon. Click “Create” and, faster than Chris Tomlin can sing a high G, you’re done.

Using Fluid to create a WP app

You can place the new WorshipPlanning app in the dock and it’s ready at hand when ever you need it. No more sifting through browser windows, tabs or even separate desktop screens.

One benefit I didn’t expect: I use WP on my laptop a great deal and with the limited screen real estate, I cherish every pixel I can give to my apps. WP running as a Fluid app gives me back all of the browser toolbar real estate I don’t need for WP so I see more names, services, etc in my templates or in my workflow than as a web app within the browser.

WINDOWS users: I’m told you can use Google’s Chrome to do the same (But I have no way to verify this…let us know in the comments!). Here’s how: with WorshipPlanning.com open in Chrome, click the Wrench or Settings at top right of the browser window, then Tools->Create application shortcuts… (NOTE: This feature seems to be missing from the OSX version of Chrome).

Huge thanks to Chad for writing this helpful “tips & tricks” instruction post!!

Spring Cleaning and General Improvements

computers connected via cloud

While it may seem like things have been a little quiet on the blog, we’ve been quite busy taking care of a few housekeeping items.  Boring as they may seem, they actually have great benefit to you the customer.   First of all, last week we migrated the site to a new architecture that is designed to run much faster and scale much better.  The  growth we have experienced over the past year has been fantastic and this architecture change is necessary to keep things running smoothly.

Rackspace Logo

For those curious, the new architecture is called a “Hybrid” environment that allows the WorshipPlanning.com database to run on dedicated hardware, while the website itself is served from virtual servers called Cloud servers.  If you are a real geek like we are, you can read more about the exact environment on Rackspace’s website.  And by the way, in this new environment we are able to better track server and site performance.  The great news is that it takes our servers (on average)  less than half a second to serve up most pages.

Error Tracking

Another environment enhancement that will be of indirect (although very positive) benefit to you is new error tracking.  It used to be that errors encountered by users on the site required you to manually submit them.  We’ve enhanced the system such that any site errors are automatically reported directly to us with a plethora of information  (and often, you won’t even notice the error).  We are putting a priority on fixing the cause of the errors, which is much easier with the new automatic information we get.  Our goal is a 100% error free site, and we really aren’t that far from it.

Password Improvements

A few weeks ago we updated the site with a new way to handle password storage, password resets, and user authentication.  Your passwords have always been secure sitting in our database behind our hardened firewall.  But we’ve taken the added measure of one-way encrypting your passwords so that they cannot be decrypted and viewed by us (or anyone else, for that matter).  As a result, we’ve updated the way we handle requests from people that have forgotten or never received their password.  Instead of sending you the password we have on file for you (which we can’t do anymore due to the encryption), we send you a special “reset password” link to the email address you have associated with your account.  The link is unique and expires after a certain amount of time.  On the reset page you are prompted to enter a new password (twice, for confirmation).  And of course, that new password is encrypted before it is stored in our database.  As a side note, passwords are now case-sensitive.

Future Enhancements

We are working on some really cool stuff that should be ready for you before fall. Keep an eye on our blog, twitter, and facebook accounts for updates!  Also, you might see an opportunity to take a survey or two for a chance to win an iTunes gift card.  Watch for any messages about this on the home page of your account.

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