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Planning Center

Church management software with Mailchimp integration

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Planning Center Reviews - Page 7

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1,082 reviews

Recommended

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Josh R.

Religious Institutions, 1-10 employees

Used daily for 2+ years

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Overall Rating
  • Value for money
  • Ease of use
  • Features
  • Customer support
  • Likelihood to recommend10/10

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The only choice in church organization software

Reviewed 4 years ago

Planning Center has allowed us to keep a record of all of our services, how we’ve done things in the past, plan for the future, and stay organized administratively. 5/5 stars for functionality and the $$ for subscribers.

Pros

Planning Center has everything a church needs to plan services and organize church attendance. They continue to release more and more options for better functionality.

Cons

There is a learning curve in using the interface. The site functions well but sometimes it can be tricky to walk new users through the site until they can learn it well.

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Patricia S.

Nonprofit Organization Management, 201-500 employees

Used other for 6-12 months

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Overall Rating
  • Value for money
  • Ease of use
  • Features
  • Customer support
  • Likelihood to recommend7/10

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Manage Events Like a Boss

Reviewed 4 years ago

Planning Center is just like it sounds - the center for your event planning. Whether you're running a full-service event with all the bells and whistles like we were, or just want a nice run of show and the ability to assign people to event teams - you'll be able to do what you need to with this software. It's a no brainer if you need to manage people and timings.

Pros

Planning Center is industry standard for events for a reason. I thought we could do without it, but I was so wrong! As a team, we use Planning Center every other week for our staff events, and we managed a conference of 1,000+ people using it as well. Even though the event was literally halfway around the world in another country, the team on the other end was just as familiar with the platform and used it weekly for their events. Our mutual familiarity with the program saved the day! The timer helped us keep organized and on-time as we managed 56 speakers over the course of three days. This software is a powerhouse! There's still so much more functionality to get into that I haven't even explored.

Cons

Planning Center isn't necessarily the most intuitively designed platform, so there's definitely a learning curve as you get started. Be sure to do the training, or have someone familiar with it show you the ropes. The only thing that nearly tanked our event was the remote connection between the app and the countdown timer for the stage, but I think that was a Wifi issue more so than with the software itself. Overall, it has way more pro's than con's.

MB
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Matt B.

Religious Institutions, 1-10 employees

Used weekly for 2+ years

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Overall Rating
  • Value for money
  • Ease of use
  • Features
  • Customer support
  • Likelihood to recommend10/10

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Planning Center is a major time-saver!

Reviewed 6 years ago

I began using PCO 10 years ago when I stepped into a worship director position, and I didn't want to spend the countless hours it had taken my predecessor to schedule services and people. Planning Center was a huge improvement to the way we were scheduling people, it allowed access to songs, and allowed you to make songs available to worship team members with ease. Since 10 years ago, PCO has expanded...

Pros

Ease of use and intuitiveness

Cons

No major cons, but there are so many options now you need to be intentional in how you set up and schedule your people.

AM
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Alicia M.

Nonprofit Organization Management, 11-50 employees

Used weekly for 2+ years

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Overall Rating
  • Value for money
  • Ease of use
  • Features
  • Customer support
  • Likelihood to recommend9/10

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Planning Center Isn't Perfect, But It's Still the Best Choice

Reviewed 4 years ago

For a reasonable fee, Planning Center does almost everything that a church of any size should need to coordinate and share data in most areas. Using the most basic functions, still worth the cost, it very much aids in coordinating people and volunteers. While the financial management section is not ideal, it is more than usable. They really had the end users in mind when designing this all in one software option.

Pros

Planning Center allows for quick and easy scheduling of both volunteers and for weekend service planning. It's most basic functions are intuitive for the regular user and the many volunteers that are likely to interact with it. The software becomes less and less intuitive as you use the moderate to more advanced features. However, their help line is one of the best around. There's rarely a wait time and the tech support is responsive and well trained. It's a good value for the monthly fees as it would take several other services to replicate their many offerings.

Cons

When it comes to giving and financials, the software falls short. It simply isn't as well designed as it could be and it requires way too much guesswork, trouble shooting and sometimes even multiple entries of the same data.

JW
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Justin W.

Religious Institutions, 1-10 employees

Used weekly for 2+ years

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Overall Rating
  • Value for money
  • Ease of use
  • Features
  • Customer support
  • Likelihood to recommend10/10

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The best!

Reviewed 3 years ago

Customer Service is incredible. Fun, loving people want to help your church minister to and reach more people.

Pros

Planning Center makes church administration tasks FUN! You feel like you are getting the job done in a way that is satisfying to the admin as well as the user. Lots of features, always updating and adding (without increasing the price).

Cons

Some features could really use input from a focus group of actual users. 90% of Planning Center is incredible--but a few odd choices here and there leave me scratching my head why certain decisions were made on the development end. But by in large--excellent!

AA
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Angel A.

Religious Institutions, 11-50 employees

Used weekly for 2+ years

Review source

Overall Rating
  • Value for money
  • Ease of use
  • Features
  • Customer support
  • Likelihood to recommend10/10

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The Gold Standard

Reviewed 2 years ago

Overall, Planning Center has been a game changer and has allowed us to organize our events and most importantly, as our church has grown we have been able to expand Planning Center's applicability.

Pros

I love the ability to have all parts of the planning process in one place, with mulitple applications that all connect and work seamlessly together.

Cons

I wish there was the ability to connect to third party software. Everything works great as long as you are in the ecosystem but if you prefer another software for one or more functions it gets a bit complicated to use them in tandem.

Vendor response

Hi, Angel! Thank you for the review. We're really glad that using Planning Center has been a solid experience for you overall. As far as addressing the callout you had with connecting to third-party software, we'd love to hear a bit more about what you have in mind. Could you send a ticket to support@planning.center and let us know what type(s) of integration you're looking for between other products? We might be able to offer some suggestions or at least track your ideas as a feature request. Thanks and have a wonderful day!

PT
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Patrick T.

Verified reviewer

Religious Institutions, 51-200 employees

Used daily for 2+ years

Review source

Overall Rating
  • Value for money
  • Ease of use
  • Features
  • Customer support
  • Likelihood to recommend10/10

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Planning Center is the go-to platform for event scheduling

Reviewed 2 years ago

I'm overall very happy with using Planning Center to plan and organize our services.

Pros

Planning Center has a fantastic platform for planning, scheduling, and running events. Scheduling teams in the matrix view and auto-schedule function make staffing positions a breeze. It's convenient that they keep a history of deleted plans for about 30 days in case you need to refer to them. The songs section makes keeping any files such as PDF's, MP3's, or links organized with the correct asset.

Cons

It can be daunting the learn how to use the software for a new user. I've encountered some issues when trying to print plans such as it not including elements I wished to include. It would be nice if you could see edits a user is making in real-time on the page.

BP
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Brianna P.

Religious Institutions, 1-10 employees

Used daily for 2+ years

Review source

Overall Rating
  • Value for money
  • Ease of use
  • Features
  • Customer support
  • Likelihood to recommend10/10

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Transformative technology

Reviewed 9 months ago
Pros

The implementation of Planning Center at my church was unbelievable. It created a hub that brought so many areas together. As the worship director, using planning center was a life saver. Instead of having multiple platforms for charts, lyrics, scheduling...etc. I could do everything in one place. It saved me time and effort planning worship sets and scheduling volunteers to play in the band. Additionally, it was a great area to track giving, have a directory, and send out mass communications to church members.

Cons

There isn't anything that I disliked. If you are on the edge about using planning center, just go all in. DO train people to use it so others know how to utilize the technology.

JC
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Joe C.

Marketing and Advertising, 11-50 employees

Used daily for 2+ years

Review source

Overall Rating
  • Value for money
  • Ease of use
  • Features
  • Customer support
  • Likelihood to recommend10/10

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A fantastic solution for any church...

Reviewed 3 years ago

I'm a HUGE planning center fan. Any pricing or ease-of-use issues that I had pale in comparison to what this tool can do and how it can help keep a church organized and efficient. It definitely takes some time (and support calls) to get to know the product but the automation and integrations are second-to-none in this space. There's no other tool out there that helps keep churches organized and efficient.

Pros

Overall features and automated emails/text to volunteers was 100% worth it for anything price or ease-of-use issue that I had. Saving time saves me $$$.

Cons

Planning Center was not easy to use initially and took an investment of time to get 'onboarded' to know what to do and how to use it. That said, I'm still sold on how useful this tool is.

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Jake T.

Verified reviewer

Religious Institutions, 1-10 employees

Used weekly for 1-2 years

Review source

Overall Rating
  • Value for money
  • Ease of use
  • Features
  • Customer support
  • Likelihood to recommend9/10

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A game-changer for any church to spice up their worship planning!

Reviewed a year ago

Overall, Planning Center has been a game changer for our church. It has allowed us to be more prepared, planned and efficient when practicing and performing our worship services. There are a lot of features that we don't use simply because we are a small church but there are a lot of features.

Pros

The music database has never not had a song we were performing. If it ever doesn't, not worries because you can add custom songs and lyrics that are automatically converted to a viewable PDF. The worship planning feature is pretty great as well. I love the drag and drop arrangement. I also love how you can add times to each song and item so you can estimate a total duration of your set. The member planning is pretty great as well. I love that you can see in real time which members invited have accepted, declined or have not responded to invitations. You can also add audio files (pads, backing tracks) that you can play on the child application Worship Stand.

Cons

The learning curve for this software is pretty high. After a year of using it, I still find it difficult to add songs on the iPad version. I also find that the program crashes frequently when trying to add music. Battery optimization could be worked on as well as it drains battery pretty quickly.

TB
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Tiffany B.

Human Resources, self-employed

Used daily for 2+ years

Review source

Overall Rating
  • Value for money
  • Ease of use
  • Features
  • Customer support
  • Likelihood to recommend7/10

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Great solution for small to mid-size churches

Reviewed 3 years ago

Overall, for the price, this software is a fantastic solution for small to mid-size churches.

Pros

Planning Center is easy to set up and use as a basic ChMS. It has everything you need under one roof. They also provide fantastic support articles and videos.

Cons

There are nuances throughout the system that make it evident that we will need to switch to another platform once we grow to a particular size. Reporting is not always user friendly and we often find ourselves having to export large amounts of data and sort it ourselves in Excel to get what we want (especially in regards to Giving data). Additionally, the inability to get support personnel on the phone is a pain at times. Having to run support strictly through email can be a huge barrier and waste of time.

AR
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Anonymous Reviewer

Verified reviewer

Religious Institutions, 1-10 employees

Used weekly for 2+ years

Review source

Overall Rating
  • Value for money
  • Ease of use
  • Features
  • Customer support
  • Likelihood to recommend10/10

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Great for church teams

Reviewed 4 years ago

A good system to organize worship teams.

Pros

I am a worship leader at our church. With his software I am able to review the week’s song set as well as review lyrics. Oftentimes the songs will be performed in a different key than what team members are familiar with. So an audio file can be uploaded. This is great since I always sing harmonies; I can learn the new notes while driving home from work since the app is available on my phone.

Cons

Earlier versions of the app were extremely buggy on the iPhone. It was easier to log into website than deal with the app. However, the current version is a huge improvement. Quite seamless. Not very intuitive with some features. Buttons don’t take you where you figure they would. But the features to listen/view to the files are great. I like the loop/repeat feature on the playback the most.

Vendor response

Hi! Thank you for your kind words and honest review! If you are finding some buttons unintuitive in the web or mobile apps, we'd love to hear from you with the details of what is happening vs. what you are expecting to happen. Contact our support team through the help section of the mobile app. We'd love to help!

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Rachel W.

Verified reviewer

Religious Institutions, 11-50 employees

Used weekly for 2+ years

Review source

Overall Rating
  • Value for money
  • Ease of use
  • Features
  • Customer support
  • Likelihood to recommend7/10

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Great solution for volunteer coordination

Reviewed 4 years ago
Pros

It was very easy to create a calendar with available dates and blocked dates for church volunteering abilities. It was easy for church leaders then to create volunteer teams based on these calendars.

Cons

Though it was nice to be able to note how many times a month I was willing to serve, I wish there was a greater ability to make this unique for each team I was serving on. For instance, instead of saying that I was only willing to serve every 6 weeks overall, I would prefer to have been able to say on Team A, I was willing to serve 2 times a month, on Team B, I was willing to serve weekly, and on Team C, I was able to serve 1 time a month. Also, it would have been nice to be able to specify serving with different people depending on the team. For Team A for instance, I'd like to serve with my husband, but on Team B, I needed to actually serve opposite weeks as my husband.

Vendor response

Hi Rachel, Thanks for writing an honest review with lots of great ideas! If you haven't done so already, would you mind sending in those ideas to us so that we can track them as a feature request? You can send us an email at support@planning.center. Thanks!

YL
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Yvonne L.

Nonprofit Organization Management, 1-10 employees

Used daily for 1-2 years

Review source

Overall Rating
  • Value for money
  • Ease of use
  • Features
  • Customer support
  • Likelihood to recommend10/10

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Planning center integration for many different purposes within the church

Reviewed 3 years ago

I have been in charge of importing our database and setting it up and it leaves lots of room for error. It has help me Start work clothes and run reports very easily.

Pros

Planning center integration for many different purposes within the church. When I first use planning center I was a user at a church where I was involved with worship ministry and the planning of services. I would receive an email saying that I had been scheduled for something and it was easy to respond and also give the dates that I wasn’t available in advance. Now I Work for a nonprofit that uses planning center people to organize it’s volunteer base. It easily integrates with mail champ and I love that.

Cons

When I originally used it for service planning I didn’t realize how integrated the People section was. The different sections that you can obtain our little confusing but once you figure that out it’s easy to use.

AR
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Anonymous Reviewer

Verified reviewer

Religious Institutions, 11-50 employees

Used daily for less than 6 months

Review source

Overall Rating
  • Value for money
  • Ease of use
  • Features
  • Customer support
  • Likelihood to recommend8/10

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Planning Center

Reviewed 2 years ago

We are updating from an older out of date people management software.

Pros

I like the fact that once the system is set up it has a lot of automatic functions and it is fairly easy to use without training.

Cons

I feel the directions/training on the initial set up of the system skips over key elements or is not organized in a manor that makes it easy for someone who has never seen their system before to set it up.

AR
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Anonymous Reviewer

Verified reviewer

Religious Institutions, 11-50 employees

Used daily for 2+ years

Review source

Overall Rating
  • Value for money
  • Ease of use
  • Features
  • Customer support
  • Likelihood to recommend10/10

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A must have for any church, organize you volunteers and staff where they serve

Reviewed 5 years ago
Pros

I love the ability with the Service portion of Planning Center. With that, we have all the info of our volunteers for each ministry saved in one place and are able to schedule them where needed. The fact the members can mark their availability and accept or decline an invitation to serve has streamlines the whole process and greatly reduced the time it takes to ask people to serve. You can create different teams of people. different events and plan. It is a must have for any church wanting to utilize people in the most efficient way.

Cons

The only complaint I have had is sometimes people new to the app have a hard time figuring it out. As soon as I am able to walk them through it they seem to be able to figure it out.

AR
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Anonymous Reviewer

Verified reviewer

Religious Institutions, 11-50 employees

Used daily for 2+ years

Review source

Overall Rating
  • Value for money
  • Ease of use
  • Features
  • Customer support
  • Likelihood to recommend10/10

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Planning Center as a one stop solution for Churches

Reviewed 4 years ago

Overall Planning Center is the best one stop solution for the church in my experience.

Pros

Planning Center really does just about everything you could ask it to do from managing services, to groups management, to people database, to check ins, to registrations, and so much more. It really is one of the best out there for user experience and as a one stop solution for the entire church.

Cons

Planning Center isn't cheap, but you get what you pay for. There are a couple of things that you have to learn work arounds for as well. Like sending second invitations. The program is designed to have people sign up for service opportunities and to manage themselves. There are work arounds to have your leaders do this as well, but it takes a little getting use to.

DM
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David M.

Verified reviewer

Religious Institutions, 11-50 employees

Used daily for 2+ years

Review source

Overall Rating
  • Value for money
  • Ease of use
  • Features
  • Customer support
  • Likelihood to recommend10/10

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I love Planning Center!

Reviewed 4 years ago
Pros

Everything! Planning Center is the best software Ive ever used for helping organize church services! We use it every week and Ive used it for almost the past decade exclusively! It has great ways of contacting the teams and keeping everyone on the same page and prepared for the weekend services!

Cons

The only thing Ive ever not loved about Planning Center is planning center resources and that is only because it was a little confusing at first and didn't seem to have a logical system of reserving rooms

Vendor response

Hey David, We just made some big changes to Planning Center Resources, and plan to add some more in the near future. Our reservation page looks and functions like a calendar now. If you'd like to give it another try, contact our support team and they can give you another free trail!

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Jason R.

Verified reviewer

Education Management, 11-50 employees

Used weekly for 2+ years

Review source

Overall Rating
  • Value for money
  • Ease of use
  • Features
  • Customer support
  • Likelihood to recommend10/10

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Unique, Full Featured, and Time Saving

Reviewed 3 years ago

This is a necessary piece of software. Even with the occasional bugs, you need it if you're in church leadership.

Pros

I'm a worship leader, so I use the scheduling, chord-chart features, etc. Music Stand and Services, mostly. The auto-scheduling saves so much time. So does Music Stand with the key changing features and chord chart sharing. It's great how the whole church can use this.

Cons

Every once in awhile there will be a bug on Sunday mornings. Each worship team member has his own iPad with the set. If I change a key or make an update, sometimes it doesn't update on each iPad. Also, sometimes when I change the page, it will change the pages wrong on the other iPads. This can cause some pretty bad disasters on stage... There are workarounds and these problems are intermittent. It's still frustrating.

Vendor response

Thanks for your review Jason! Our support team would like to help you with those issues you pointed out. That is not normal behavior and we'd like to get those resolved!

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Pieter v.

Verified reviewer

Religious Institutions, 1-10 employees

Review source

Overall Rating
  • Value for money
  • Ease of use
  • Features
  • Customer support
  • Likelihood to recommend6/10

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A Great All-in-One Solution For Small Churches, Yet Lacks in Customizability

Reviewed 7 months ago

Our setup was easy, but because we found some features lacking in customizability to our organization's needs, we did not end up sticking with Planning Center past the trial period, but instead opted for a competitor.

Pros

Planning Center is a solution that really provides church an "all-in-one" solution to various aspects of church management - from volunteers, to donations, to events.

Cons

Unfortunately, while Planning Center provides a one stop shop with many features, there are competitors with specialized software tools that does a better job at some of those features. We were most interested in donations forms, but found Planning Center's to be lacking in customizability as well as integration with other software API's or something like Zapier.

Vendor response

Thanks for your kind words, Pieter! You mentioned some feedback on our forms and API. Our Support Team is a great resource for help in that area. Hit the '?' icon in the upper-right of the screen when you are looking at your List. Send us a message and our team will jump in to help! Thanks!

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Rachelle G.

Verified reviewer

Entertainment, 11-50 employees

Used daily for 1-2 years

Review source

Overall Rating
  • Value for money
  • Ease of use
  • Features
  • Customer support
  • Likelihood to recommend8/10

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Amazing for Scheduling Worship Teams

Reviewed 4 years ago

We are able to organize and schedule over 60 people who play on multiple days for differing events easily and smoothly by scheduling them for practices and services.

Pros

I love being able to easily put together the worship team/band for any service by selecting the people, choosing their instrument or vocalist position, and letting them know when practice is, when the service time is, and what songs they should practice.

Cons

I would love to be able to see more easily who has been scheduled in past services and possibly even remind my band members when a service or practice is upcoming.

Vendor response

Hi Rachelle! Thank you for your kind words and honest review! Reminders for your band members can be set from within the Times Field in a Plan. This way your Team Members are reminded when a practice or service is coming up when they are scheduled. If you'd like help setting this up, you can email our support at support@planning.center and our team would be happy to help.

BW
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Bart W.

Nonprofit Organization Management, 1-10 employees

Used daily for 2+ years

Review source

Overall Rating
  • Value for money
  • Ease of use
  • Features
  • Customer support
  • Likelihood to recommend7/10

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A do-it-all software

Reviewed 2 years ago

Overall I'm quite pleased. New features have rolled out over the years we've used it. There's maybe one that I'd like to see added. Hopefully it'll come in the near future.

Pros

There is so much to Planning Center. But there is a learning curve. Once understood, it's invaluable to our organization. The online database of our people is what's most valuable to us.

Cons

There's a bit of a learning curve to each add-on. I do wish some of the features were easier to find or figure out.

Vendor response

Hey Bart! Thanks for taking the time to leave the review. You mentioned there's one feature you'd love to see added. We'd love to hear about that feature. Would you be up for emailing this idea to our support team at support@planningcenter.com? We look forward to hearing from you.

JT
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Jonathon T.

Religious Institutions, 11-50 employees

Used daily for 1-2 years

Review source

Overall Rating
  • Value for money
  • Ease of use
  • Features
  • Customer support
  • Likelihood to recommend10/10

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Great software at a great price.

Reviewed 3 years ago

Pretty great!

Pros

I love the user interface, the price, the support, the multitude of features, and the way they are constantly developing the software to make it better.

Cons

This is a very user-friendly tool. To achieve that, they limit options. Sometimes those limitations can be frustrating. We had to find workarounds several times to accomplish necessary tasks.

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Micah S.

Verified reviewer

Religious Institutions, 1-10 employees

Used daily for 2+ years

Review source

Overall Rating
  • Value for money
  • Ease of use
  • Features
  • Customer support
  • Likelihood to recommend10/10

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An Amazing Suite of Church Resources

Reviewed 4 years ago

Overall, Planning Center is extremely helpful in planning out our church services, and Check Ins makes accountability and security much easier to maintain.

Pros

I like that Planning Center has many different programs available for different things. I specifically use "Services" to organize and arrange our church services, "Check Ins" to log attendance and to add an extra security measure for our children, and "People" which we use as our database or our church roster. The integration between each of their applications is pretty awesome, and each program is very easy to use.

Cons

The only negative thing I have to say is that it wouldn't work on my wife's iPhone 6s, but we have a total of 20 something other devices that it has worked fine with.

ZO
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Zavier O.

Nonprofit Organization Management, 1-10 employees

Used other for 1-2 years

Review source

Overall Rating
  • Value for money
  • Ease of use
  • Features
  • Customer support
  • Likelihood to recommend10/10

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Volunteer Coordination and Communication made easy

Reviewed 4 years ago

I was trained to use planning center to organize our tech volunteers week-to-week. It took me a little while to learn how to use it, but after I got the hang of it, I was able to build a full church service flow from beginning to end, notes on each section, volunteers for each area, drop in our ProPresenter presentation and videos, arrange songs, and setup reminder texts to my volunteers. I also got super quick feedback from my workers who were unable to show up so we could find a substitute. Planning Center is a powerful tool for any organization having to shuffle a huge volunteer worker pool. Putting in new volunteer information is also fast and easy. I cannot recommend this enough.

Pros

Auto-volunteer contact and reminder texts/emails Ease of creating assigned roles and positions Drag-and-drop method for assigning volunteers to a specific role Custom email/text templates for communication Rotating schedules can be formed for monthly/weekly/daily volunteers Information on all volunteers in one place Integrations with CCLI, ProPresenter, and other softwares

Cons

Can be tricky getting from one area to another for planning Steep initial learning curve

Vendor response

Thanks for the love, and we are glad it is a great asset to you and your ministry. We'd love to hear more about your experience and any suggestions you may have to help with the learning curve. If you'd email your thoughts to support@planning.center, our team would be happy to send any suggestions you have on.