Managing data is the worst. Literally. The worst.
There’s nothing more soul-sucking than entering data into spreadsheets. Well, except maybe entering the same data into multiple spreadsheets. And that’s a real problem facing most choruses.
Here’s a very typical scenario: a new singer joins your organization. That singer needs to get added to the membership roster. Oh, and also the spreadsheet for attendance. And did I mention the dues spreadsheet? That doesn’t even count the email list for the weekly newsletter. For most choruses, none of these functions are integrated, making them all the more painful to manage.
But it doesn’t have to be this way! There are a handful of chorus management tools out there designed specifically to help with the administrative challenges faced by choruses. The two most prominent are Chorus Connection and Groupanizer.
Here are 7 key reasons your chorus should consider using such a tool:
1) Eliminate duplicate data entry
Using an integrated system means the removal of a lot of duplicate data entry. When a new singer gets added to the database, she’ll automatically get added to the appropriate email lists. If her contact information changes, she can update it herself in a single place and the change propagates everywhere. The list of similar benefits is long.
2) Save time
Eliminating data entry means your team will save a lot of time. As a result, they can focus on things that will actually grow your organization, rather than managing data.
3) Make life easier for singers
Singers need access to a lot of information: the calendar, rehearsal tracks, contact information, etc. Life gets much easier when everything can be found in a single place.
4) Remove bottlenecks
Some choruses do put much of that information on a members’ only page on their website. That can be really valuable, but typically all changes have to be made by a webmaster. A chorus management tool can allow less tech savvy people to easily make changes directly. Your artistic director, for example, could upload rehearsal tracks himself.
5) Smoother turnover
Turnover is constant in choruses. When everything is run from spreadsheets or custom built tools, new leaders have to learn the idiosyncrasies of their predecessors’ systems or design something new from scratch. Either way, it’s typically a bumpy ride. A chorus management tool can help keep things standardized, smoothing normally chaotic transitions.
Speaking of turnover, after transitions, leaders often don’t have access to the people who originally designed their current systems. If they have questions or get confused, this can be especially frustrating. If they’re using a chorus management tool, however, they have access to that company’s team, meaning faster and more reliable support.
7) Constant improvements
If your organization has a system cobbled together by volunteers, improvements and bug fixes are completely dependent on their time and availability. If you use a vendor, however, you can and should expect to see improvements and fixes on a regular basis.
Using a chorus management tool will radically change your organization for the better. What are you waiting for?