SPoCs (Single Points of Contact)
What is a SPoC?
Think Ministry, Inc. will partner directly with certain individuals in each MinistryPlatform church that have been specially trained and designated as the Single Point of Contact or "SPoC" for all Support requests in a given area of expertise. SPoCs are the foundation of our approach to Support.
SPoCs are the Single Point of Contact between your church and Think Ministry. These individuals will work to ensure you get the most from MinistryPlatform and will escalate a Support request (ticket) to us, when appropriate, by sending an email to Support.
Your SPoC is not necessarily just one person! You may have separate people designated as User SPoC, IT SPoC and Money SPoC. Every church assigns these differently, and sometimes the same person wears multiple hats.
In some cases all SPoCs duties are covered by one person who is a part-time MinistryPlatform Coordinator who is also the liaison to the church’s IT support company. In other churches, SPoCs are part of a larger staff team dedicated to supporting the entire church staff in the use of the MinistryPlatform.
Why do we recommend a SPoC Team?
Having 3 SPoCs on your staff team is important for several reasons:
SPoCs will naturally fall into one of three designations - User, Money, and IT. Each of these SPoCs will have areas of expertise in their positions and in MP, which will enable them to support users falling under their purview more effectively and efficiently.
MinistryPlatform Release Notes and other communications will be digested differently based on SPoC role, so having User, Money and IT functions covered means that all of your MP users get the greatest benefit from our deployments of software fixes and new features.
SPoCs can naturally train users in their purview more easily, and work with them to increase productivity.
If a SPoC is in a meeting or unavailable, other SPoCs can step in to assist any MP user.
If a SPoC is on extended leave or vacation, the other SPoCs can cover.
Having a SPoC team allows them to support and encourage each other in their unique MP roles!
What does a SPoC do?
There are no "hard and fast" definitions for each SPoC role. Our churches all are unique in how they manage MP and how their staff is structured for their ministry goals. However, here are some basic guidelines:
- User SPoC — A high-level User who is the guardian of the data in your MinistryPlatform system. Their duties may include managing what data is being used, how is it being entered, how it is kept clean*, etc. The User SPoC is often times expected to know how to set up Events, Groups, Opportunities, Check In, etc. The User SPoC is often times also responsible for training your new or existing staff/volunteer Users on how to use MP.
- Money SPoC — A high-level User who is the master of the Stewardship and Product and Payment sections of MinistryPlatform. Their duties may include setting up Program, Products, and Pledge Campaigns as well as processing and reconciling Donations and Payments.
- IT SPoC — A high-level User who is the keeper of the server and IT infrastructure that runs MinistryPlatform. IT SPoCs have access to servers/networks/etc. and their duties may include managing Users and Security Roles as well as domains, remote connections, and SSL certificates. The IT SPoC might also be involved with Portal skinning or advanced custom views.
*Some churches have a volunteer (or team of volunteers) that fill this "Data Quality" role, others have this be part of the User SPoC's role, and others have this be a random admin staff who just happens to love this type thing. We strongly recommend identifying a person responsible for Data Quality. As the quality of your data is important to making all the MP features, tools, reports, etc of highest value to you. The quality of what you put in determines the quality of what you get out!
Why SPoCs are Key
The SPoCs role is critical to the success of supporting their users. SPoCs are the first level of support. Their job is to understand the issues their users are having, think them through, troubleshoot and problem solve with the user, reproduce where possible, and if needed, escalate to us by emailing a Support request.
Your SPoC team is made up of people that both your users and our Support staff know personally. They know the user, the church, the system, and our team! Your SPoC is uniquely positioned to ensure needs are communicated fully and addressed according to church priorities! In other words, SPoCs rock!
To Change A SPoC
Contact Support with the details. If adding a SPoC include full name, email address, and title.