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Posted: Mon Aug 27, 2007 1:08 pm
Here is another one. This is one is from my Ward. From what I've seen, it seems that the Sisters gained the greatest benefit from this system.
August 27, 2007
To Whom It May Concern:
The Foothill Ranch Ward found the Visiting Teaching Website to be extremely valuable.
The sisters loved the ease of reporting and the supervisors and secretary were more easily able to manage statistics and reports.
We were able to reach more sisters using the computerized reporting and had more prompt replies. The reminders to do your visiting teaching and report in a timely fashion were extremely helpful.
Through this reporting program we believe more sisters were visited because of the reminders and ease of reporting. For those sisters not acquainted with the computer, phone reporting was still available and much easier to do because of the limited number of phone calls necessary.
As a presidency we were able to consistently see how the visiting teaching program was working, see areas of concern and take immediate action.
We are all hopeful that this type of program will be accessible in the near future.
Relief Society PresidentFoothill Ranch Ward
Posted: Mon Aug 27, 2007 7:58 pm
Great to see the support, hope church side they are cutting through all the red tape so that it can bless the entire church body.
yet another one
Posted: Tue Aug 28, 2007 10:12 am
Here is another one. Allison is a Supervisor in my ward's Relief Society. The theme here seems to be that the system actually increases
the number of Households/Sisters that are visited each month. This is a good thing.
I am writing this letter to express to you how useful it was to use the Online VT Reporting Application. It was very effective because most people in our ward use a computer. I had all of my sisters except for one report on time using this system. The sister that did not use the system was still contacted by phone the old fashioned way.
Using the phone sometimes isn't as accurate because many people do not check their (land line) phone messages daily and if they do many do not respond to the message in a timely fashion. Hence, many people that have done their visiting teaching do not report as having done so. Our records are therefore not as accurate as they could be. Also the Online Reporting Application has a built in mid month reminder that reminds the sisters to do their visiting teaching!!! I have had the best results where most everyone reported 100 percent (or closer to 100%) on the months where the system was utilized.
I was hoping that you would please reconsider allowing us to use this most effective system.
Foothill Ranch Ward
Letter from my ward's Elders Quorum
Posted: Thu Aug 30, 2007 10:33 pm
To Whom It May Concern
We in the Foothill Ranch ward of the Santa Margarita, California stake were very disappointed when we were told that the Home Teaching Web Site we were using was no longer available to be used. This was a very effective way to manage the reporting of our home teaching on a real time basis. Now we are spending a considerable amount of additional time hunting down home teachers to get their home teaching status. This is not value added.
If there is anything that can be done to bring this program back we would greatly appreciate it.
Elders Quorum President
Foothill Ranch Ward
Posted: Thu Aug 30, 2007 10:50 pm
As convincing as these letters are, it appears there have been only two wards represented so far. Apparently the Foothill Ranch ward relied on it heavily.
Just observations, by the way; I'm not trying to say much more than that...
Posted: Fri Aug 31, 2007 1:18 am
There were quite a few wards in the San Clemente Stake that assisted in testing that provided some extremely positive feedback. However, I haven't received any formal letters from them yet, nor do I have permission to post any of the e-mails I have received from them. As I receive any formal feedback regarding the testing that has transpired, I will post it here for your information.
Posted: Sun Sep 02, 2007 7:28 pm
The charlottesville VA, 2nd ward was Elders quorum also using the HT site with much success. It was very easy to use and allowed for better dissemination of information. We had all but one or two of the elders using the system. We were very sad to see the program go and hope that it will return soon. We saw an increase in visits as well as a LARGE decrease in paperwork which allowed us as a presidency to focus on the individuals instead of paperwork. We hope that the program will return on line soon.
Brad was also extremely helpful in supporting the system and responded very quickly to our particular questions. It was a great service that he provided and we were greatful for it.
Elders Quorum President
Charlottesville 2nd ward
Home Teaching Report and Configuration of Districts
Posted: Tue Sep 04, 2007 11:25 pm
As the membership clerk for our Ward, I don't know how many times I have had to help the Sisters set up visiting teaching districts.
I find that just recommending that they read the screen and look for the obvious, seems to work.
But I have always wondered why they got rid of old form we used to use in the 80's that actually asked for a written home teaching report.
When they had to write it down, we actually had better numbers.
But is was also fun to catch those would lie about visits, especially
on deceased members. It was fun to watch there faces in PPI's
with the Bishop when they were told they had been dead for 2 months.
San Clemente Stake feels a great loss
Posted: Tue Sep 11, 2007 6:57 pm
I believe I was the first one in in the San Clemente Stake to start using the HT/VT Reporting Website, when I discovered it immediately after receiving my calings as High Priest Group Leader for the San Clemente 4th Ward. I found it when I was looking at LDS.org for information on my calling and ended up on ldstech.lds.org. We immediately found this tool to dramatically increase the efficiency and quality of our HT reporting, allowing th HP Group Leadership to spend less time gathering HT reports and focus more time on responding to the information gathered. After experienceing the many benefits of this tool for a couple of months, I began sharing it with others in the Stake and also helped set it up for our Relief Society and Elder's Quorum. To the best of my knowledge, it was being used by at least 4 wards in the Stake.
August was our first month without use of the tool, and it has been a great loss. We are hoping that the necessary steps will be taken soon, to allow us to continue using this invaluable tool.
In an article posted on LDS.org, titled “Talking about Technology in the Church”, Joel Dehlin, Chief Information Officer for the Church, presents a vision of what technology should do for the Church:
“It should deliver high quality content to every corner of the earth, decrease administration and increase ministration, and bring souls to Christ,” he said during a Tech Talk” discussion held in Salt Lake City on January 18 and 23.
There is a great, untapped resource of people who are tech-savvy and could improve the technology of the Church, Brother Dehlin said. The time has come to utilize their knowledge.
I would write more about the benefits of the automated reporting and the many ways it has improved our Home and Visiting Teaching, but that does not really matter if it goes against Church policy. We would greatly appreciate the efforts of anybody in a position to expedite the church-wide approval and implementation of this wonderful tool.
So where do we stand
Posted: Tue Sep 18, 2007 8:56 pm
As one of the 20-21 original pilot sites for the ward websites, this feature is one we requested long ago. While I did not test the site here, it sounds like exactly what we needed (and what the Ward RS president - my wife) requests regularly.
We truly need to find away to enable this funtionality and facilitate the critical reporting and fellowship tools offered here. There is so much work that is put into the records that it requires a tremendous burden on the leaders when they can only access it at the church. I realize that is may be easy for highly demographically concentrated wards to get to the church, but outside of Calif, Utah and Idaho, this tool is desparately needed.
Boiling Springs Ward
Campobello, South Carolina