MLS change - temple recommend activation (caught by surprise)

Discussions around using and interfacing with the Church MLS program.
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jeromer7
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Bar Coded Recommends

Postby jeromer7 » Wed May 23, 2007 3:26 pm

Info posted by danpass earlier today is correct. The pilot ran at the Winter Quarters and Billings Montana temples. Participating stakes were notified in September 2005 of the change and transitioned recommends during Oct-Dec. Members took existing valid recommends in and a member of the bishopric copied the info onto the new form. Member and bishopric member signed. Then member got stake presidency member signature. Each ward/stake worked out their own process in how to get this done. In most cases I'm aware of, if a member's recommend was due to expire within two or three months, a formal interview was required. For all others it was just trading the old for the new and getting the signatures. It was an interesting time.

Actual trial ran from Jan - Dec 2006. Results were reviewed by the Brethren in Jan 2007 and obviously it was a success as the process is being implemented.

I had the unique experience of being a stake clerk and a temple shift coordinator at Winter Quarters during the trial so I got to see and experience the speed bumps and growing pains from both sides.

When we were initially trained at the temple by a member of the Temple Department, we were told the bar coded recommends are to improve security, as has been mentioned previously in the thread. He mentioned that the new process would help with lost and stolen recommends (IF the member reported such), but would not be able to ascertain whether the individual presenting a valid recommend actually was the person to whom it was issued.

Somewhere along the way another small temple in Utah (Vernal?) was added to the trial and rumor had it that they also were using biometrics (thumb pad). I heard that this will not be carried over into the "live" program.

One of the things that will help in the implementation in your stake will be to get the bishoprics to have a member list handy when they are doing the recommend conversion. Activation requires a validation of the member number. I had to "kick back" several in the first few weeks that I couldn't activate because the member number on the recommend didn't match the member's number in MLS--probably hadn't for years, but was never caught as there was no check.

Overall the system runs pretty smoothly. Biggest issue now seems to be when a member shows up at the temple and the recommend scans as Unactivated. In a few cases this occurred when a member had their interview with the stake presidency member at 6:00PM and went to the temple for the 7:30PM session.
JLR

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thedqs
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Postby thedqs » Wed May 23, 2007 6:11 pm

JLRose wrote:Overall the system runs pretty smoothly. Biggest issue now seems to be when a member shows up at the temple and the recommend scans as Unactivated. In a few cases this occurred when a member had their interview with the stake presidency member at 6:00PM and went to the temple for the 7:30PM session.


So no more last minute interviews to get onto the next session. :D

Anyway thanks to everyone who contributed to the discussion. As a summary for the new recommends:
  • Increase Security and Verification
  • Not connected to NFS (yet)
  • Prevents usage of stolen or sold recommends.
  • Trial runs occured in Winter Quarters; Billings, Montana and possibly Vernal, Utah
Hmm probabily means the next time I get my recommend renewed Provo will be on this new system.
- David

daryl1
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Postby daryl1 » Wed May 23, 2007 7:52 pm

Our Stake and Temple District has not implamented this yet. This has been in the works for many years trying the different technologies out while going slow and cautious.

Many years ago I heard about a Temple in southern California that tried automation. One would slide a card and it would say if in the morning time "good morning brother or sister so and so, welcome to the so and so temple." Then they did away with that system and scrapted it out. This was in the 80's and the technology was young. Now the technology is perfected to a degree mainly due to the financial institutions.

From reading the forum sounds like it has been working good once implamented. The big step will be exchanging the recommends, and learning the new system and equipment. This will take some time.

This is more like a drivers license except without the photo. This could be implamented with the new recommend in the future for better and faster id. Collages have been doing this for years now along with elementary schools.

Helps cut down on fraud, increases accountability, and sefety. If lost or stolen can be quickly cancled and a new one can then be issued. The old one is deactivated no longer valid.

This solves many problems and creates a few new one's but the benefits look positive.

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ihenpecked
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Postby ihenpecked » Thu May 24, 2007 7:19 am

And you still can't do a hard lamination on these new cards, correct?

SmithGW
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Barcoded Recommends

Postby SmithGW » Thu May 24, 2007 8:50 am

You are probably remembering when recommends were placed in a plastic sleeve that had a magnetic strip on it. The strip was encoded with the deceased person's name and ordinance and then swiped through a card reader when the ordinance was completed. This is not that. The barcode on the new recommend ensures that it is a legitimate recommend and that it is tied to the member's record number. The purpose is to make sure only the worthy are admitted the temple, not to track or trace anything with the barcode.

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darthwader-p40
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Older magnetic strip sleeves...

Postby darthwader-p40 » Thu May 24, 2007 9:51 am

smithgw wrote:You are probably remembering when recommends were placed in a plastic sleeve that had a magnetic strip on it. The strip was encoded with the deceased person's name and ordinance and then swiped through a card reader when the ordinance was completed. This is not that. The barcode on the new recommend ensures that it is a legitimate recommend and that it is tied to the member's record number. The purpose is to make sure only the worthy are admitted the temple, not to track or trace anything with the barcode.


I still use my old magnetic strip plastic sleeve... almost every time I visit the temple one of the workers asks me if I would like a newer (and probably clearer) plastic sleeve. To me, it is a reminder of how far we have come with technology... and how far we will go in future!! This is all exciting to see the Lord's work progress.

Maybe the new barcode system will make it faster for people to enter the temple... So when the day comes that the doors of the temple are flooded with people, etc. etc...
Piliin ang tama... (CTR in Pilipino)

russellhltn
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Postby russellhltn » Fri May 25, 2007 7:59 am

I don't see any practical application of tying the new recommends to nFS. But one thing that might come out of this is the temples tracking attendance like they used to. Back in the old automation days they used to do that. But when they pulled out the equipment, they no longer supplied that, and the Monthly Reports no longer requested that. The problem was the local leaders still wanted the reports, so they came up with various ways to get members to report their temple ordnance work - with varying degrees of success.

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Postby JamesAnderson » Fri May 25, 2007 8:27 am

I saw that too. One temple would take your stake and ward at another point manually even when they had bhe software for whatever reason.

My idea for allowing entry of the recommend number by the patron when doing a submission is this. We've all lost one thing or another on the way somewhere that we needed once there, so why not have a backup method to pull the submission when you get to the temple? If you lose the paper, and input the recommend number, then all the family file office would have to do would be to scan the recommend, look up the submission, and print it as if the patron had the printout with them. But it would be just that, voluntary, but I think one lost sheet and the patron would want to use the backup method of inputting the recommend number at the time of the submission the next time.

Of course when they got a new recommend, it might not work unless they were able to go and update the info in NFS to use as the backup in retrieving the data.

But I've always felt that the membership number would be the primary one would use to get the data, the recommend and its bar code would just make the process so much easier for thlose that chose to do it. And think of this, it oculd result in paperless submissions even.

rmrichesjr
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Postby rmrichesjr » Fri May 25, 2007 11:32 am

RussellHltn wrote:I don't see any practical application of tying the new recommends to nFS. But one thing that might come out of this is the temples tracking attendance like they used to. Back in the old automation days they used to do that. But when they pulled out the equipment, they no longer supplied that, and the Monthly Reports no longer requested that. The problem was the local leaders still wanted the reports, so they came up with various ways to get members to report their temple ordnance work - with varying degrees of success.


Around 10-15 years ago in my previous stake, the local practice was for quorum leaders to gather temple attendance information when they called to get reports of home teaching reports. That practice stopped abruptly after a meeting I was informed of with the Area President. The stake leaders showed him graphs and numbers for temple attendance. He asked where they got the information. They told him. He instructed them to repent and not do that again.

JamesAnderson wrote:I saw that too. One temple would take your stake and ward at another point manually even when they had bhe software for whatever reason.

My idea for allowing entry of the recommend number by the patron when doing a submission is this. We've all lost one thing or another on the way somewhere that we needed once there, so why not have a backup method to pull the submission when you get to the temple? If you lose the paper, and input the recommend number, then all the family file office would have to do would be to scan the recommend, look up the submission, and print it as if the patron had the printout with them. But it would be just that, voluntary, but I think one lost sheet and the patron would want to use the backup method of inputting the recommend number at the time of the submission the next time.

Of course when they got a new recommend, it might not work unless they were able to go and update the info in NFS to use as the backup in retrieving the data.

But I've always felt that the membership number would be the primary one would use to get the data, the recommend and its bar code would just make the process so much easier for thlose that chose to do it. And think of this, it oculd result in paperless submissions even.


At least in the recent NFS beta, I'm pretty sure there was a feature to print duplicate Family Ordinance Request forms. Just having an NFS-capable computer available could allow a patron to print a duplicate form, without the necessity of linking the recommend system and NFS. Paperless submission may be worthwhile, but may not be much of a gain considering there will likely be several blue/pink/yellow cards printed for each FOR.

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Postby russellhltn » Sun May 27, 2007 2:38 am

JamesAnderson wrote:so why not have a backup method to pull the submission when you get to the temple?


1) The paper can be re-printed at anytime by logging in to the site.

2) The primary means of locating a membership record is the name and birth date.

As such, there seems to be ample "backup". It's a possibility, but unless the computer file is "right there" I'm not sure if that angle is going to get much attention.

Also, the person asking for the cards may not be the submitter, but a friend of the submitter. Remember, the paper pulls up the entire submission, not just one name. I don't know, but I suspect the barcode is only used to generate the family file cards. Once printed, the cards will be processed the same way they are now.


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