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Information technology coordination, server management, and computer hardware and software troubleshooting is managed by Bryan Compton, who can be reached by e-mail at BryanCompton@vaumc.org or by phone at 1-800-768-6040, or (804) 521-1100, ext. 115.
Virginia Conference Information Technology Support Policy
The Virginia Conference Information Technology staff provides basic support for data and phone communications as well as all computing concerns for the bishop, district superintendents, employees and staff of the Virginia Annual Conference. This support includes installation, maintenance and necessary repairs of computers, information systems and other information technology resources supplied by the conference to be used for the business of the conference.
IT staff will advise district offices on office software and hardware purchases and will help set up and maintain access to COLTS, Raiser’s Edge and any other conference databases or software programs that must be accessed by the districts. With the exception of the Richmond District (which has office space in the Virginia United Methodist Center and includes payment for IT support in the rent it pays to the conference), district offices are expected to use funds in the district budgets to provide for all other computer and telephone equipment support and maintenance.
Due to limitations of number of staff and time availability, Virginia Conference Information Technology staff will not provide assistance with maintenance, repairs or other support for personal equipment or systems that are not used for conference business or for equipment belonging to family members of conference employees or District Superintendents. Nor will IT staff provide maintenance, repairs or other support for computer equipment or other information technology resources for local churches.
Conference IT staff will not purchase equipment or software for anyone except the bishop, district superintendents, employees and staff of the Virginia Annual Conference who require resources to be used for the business of the conference. However, district offices, local churches, members of Virginia United Methodist churches, and employees of any local church, conference office, district office or conference-related agency may use the Virginia Conference Dell Employee Purchase Program (EPP) (or other vendor programs which the conference may decide to join) to purchase equipment and receive a discount on items purchased. Payment for all items purchased under the EPP program must be made directly to the vendor.
— Revised August 6, 2009
From time to time, the IT Department receives questions from local church pastors, staff, treasurers or secretaries about computer software for local churches.
A list of several church software vendors are listed below. You may wish to visit the vendor's website to explore the various kinds of software available to local churches.
When reviewing church software for use in your church it is advisable to do four things:
1. List your needs for data management software before talking to any vendor. As you discuss your needs with the prospective vendors use this as a checklist for determining if the software will meet your needs as a church.
2. Get a demonstration version of the software for review by the church personnel that will be using the software. Have the vendor come and do the demonstration or visit a site where the software is being used and have them demonstrate the functionality of the software. For accounting packages, be sure you see the actual reports that the software will produce.
3. Ask the software vendor what computer system requirements are optimal for running the software. Will you be satisfied with how the new software runs on your current system or need to buy new computer hardware?
4. Have the software vendor give you a list of churches in your area who use the software. Call them. Find out what modules they are using and how they like it. Make a visit for a discussion with them.
There are several programs The United Methodist Church has set up to help stretch church contribution dollars. Some programs have restrictions. Overviews and links to the programs are listed below. Information on this page is offered for information only. The conference is not in the position to provide customer support on commercial computer products.
The Virginia Conference has an Employee Purchase Program open to Virginia Conference Church and Agency employees. Information on the Dell EPP Program information can be reached at 1-800-934-1652. The Va Conference EPP Code PS19689998
United Methodist Communications Techshop http://www.techshopministry.org
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