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It's great to see who's signing up for your events but do they actually attend? Or, have you ever wanted to take an impromptu register of attendance at one of your events but then the moment passes? Event check-in will help you!
Overview of intended functionality
Event check-in can be initiated by Calendar module Users from within ChurchSuite and by designated event overseers from within My ChurchSuite. And, if using the ChurchSuite app on a smartphone or tablet, users and overseers can even scan the check-in QR codes accessible through the sign-up's confirmation email using the in-built QR scanner. For busy events, multiple devices can run event check-in simultaneously - 'checkins' are updated in real time so a check-in recorded on one device is immediately reflected on the other devices.
As an alternative to QR-scanning, you may prefer to view a list of event sign-ups and tick names off the list as they arrive. But it's not just for your "sign-up" events - you can take an impromptu register of attendance of contacts and children for any event with a confirmed status.
During check-in, the optional check-in confirmation message displays all the event sign-up details, including details of tickets, payments and event question responses, making the "on the door" user experience really easy to administer.
For "Pay on arrival" tickets, or where you have unpaid tickets, there's an option to Mark Paid an unpaid ticket as part of the Check-In process on the door.
All the check-in data (who, when and by whom) is added back to the Calendar module in real time and can be clearly seen against each event on the Check-Ins tab. The same event management features for Sign-Ups are also provided for Check-Ins; so you can easily Communicate with checked in contacts after an event, perhaps assign them to a Key Date or Tag or add them to a Flow.
For events set as Sign up to the sequence - like an Alpha course, where people sign-up once to all the dates of the sequence - you can run check-in for each date in the sequence; the sequence check-in data then builds into a helpful table of attendance.
From an event's attendance table you can filter communications based on attendance, perhaps to those who attended more than one date in the sequence, those who attended all dates or just those who attended on certain dates.
Using event check-in
There are no special settings needed to make use of the event check-in functionality. Check-in can be run for any past or future-dated event in the Calendar module with a Confirmed status, either by a Calendar module User from an event's "View" page, selecting Go to event check-in...
...or by designated event overseers from the My Events section within My ChurchSuite on the event's "View" page, selecting Check-In.
It's intentional that event overseers can only access this Check-In button for events within the last 7 days - if the event is older than that and you still require historic attendance data to be added, then this will need to be done by a Calendar module user within ChurchSuite.
Whether working within a browser or from within the iOS or Android ChurchSuite app, the event's Check-In page is launched.
The check-in page is essentially a register of sign-ups that can be ticked to check people in. You can further customise the check-in experience for the user or overseer from the Settings menu. For example, by unchecking Show checked in, the list will only display people not yet checked in - as you check in each person, the list gets shorter. Similarly, you can optionally turn off Confirm check-ins, which will prevent the pop up check-in confirmation from displaying.
When enabled, the Confirm check-ins pop up is a useful way of viewing details of each sign-up's ticket, payment details and event question responses. Where there are "pay on arrival" tickets or unpaid tickets, the Confirm check-ins pop up includes the option to Mark Paid as part of the Check-In process - each person's 'on-the-door' payment processed in this way is recorded back against the event in ChurchSuite. Note that this is a manual payment workflow for processing on the door payments, perhaps in cash. It's not possible to process 'on the door' card payments - these can only be processed at the point of originally signing up.
When working with long lists of sign-ups you can use the search bar to search by name, perhaps 'last name', as you type the list of matching sign-ups is automatically filtered; ideal for checking in families. For events with multiple ticket types, the ticket filter can also be used to further filter a long list of sign-ups.
For events where you wish to record attendance for people who have not previously signed up or where you wish to take an impromptu register of attendance for a non-sign-up event, you can enable "Person Search" on the Check-in page Settings, choosing whether to Search Address Book or Search Children or both. Additionally, for events whose visibility has been restricted by Tag, you can select Search event tags, which will give you a filtered list of people to search within and check-in, based on the event's original audience. The Search event tags setting is only shown if the event's visibility has Show in My ChurchSuite enabled and has been restricted to a Tag.
The Device name setting (shown above) is helpful for distinguishing which user or overseer checked a person in and is visible when viewing the Check-Ins attendance tab on the event's "View" page. Where the Check-Ins tab is in respect of a sequence, hovering your cursor over a tick in table will reveal the check in device name and check-in date/time stamp.
QR Code scanning and authorising additional devices
As an alternative to ticking names on a check-in list, Users and event overseers accessing the Check-In page within the ChurchSuite iOS or Android app, are able to scan QR codes to check people in. A unique QR code is embedded within each attendee's sign-up confirmation email. Scanning that QR code launches the app's in-built QR code scanner. Scanning a QR code will check them in. From the check-in page in the app, click Scan QR code.
Further check-in devices can be authorised by overseers from within My ChurchSuite. This can be helpful when you need a helper, who is not an overseer, to assist with event check-in at busy events.
Any device with an in-built camera, an installed third-party QR Scanner app and internet access can be used. They will use their third-party scanner app, rather than the ChurchSuite app to scan QR codes.
Overseers initiate the process of authorising a device. From the event check-in page click +Device.
The Add check-in device pop up displays a QR code and secure PIN number. Other devices can either scan the overseer's QR code directly (no PIN required) or they can scan the QR code of any event sign-up/delegate, which will open the check-in page and request the authentication PIN (this PIN is only required when the first check-in QR code is scanned, not for subsequent check-ins).
There's no limit to the number of concurrent check-in devices that can be used. Each check-in device can be uniquely-named (on the Settings menu of the check-in page). The device name is then included with the check-in attendance data added, so you can always see who was checked in by whom.
When a new device is first authorised using either method above, the check-in page opens within the device's browser. An authorised device can either be used to manually tick names on the check-in page or the user can switch back to their device's third-party QR Code scanner app and resume scanning in event delegates. Note that each scan will return them to the event check-in page to log the check-in entry, after which they must switch back again to their QR Scanner app in order to scan the next QR code.
Note that the "Scan QR Code" button on the check-in page is only visible to overseers within the ChurchSuite app. Non overseers must use a third-party QR Code Scanner app.
Communicating with event check-in attendees
A vital part of event management is effective and timely communication, both before the event, perhaps to pre-welcome people and let them know any last minute information, or chase up those 'non-responders'; but also after the event, perhaps to thank people for coming or to communicate 'next steps'.
On the Check-Ins tab click Communicate and choose Send email or Send SMS to communicate with the filtered list of attendees.
By default, the recipient list will comprise all attendees for the event attendance or sequence attendance being viewed. You can also apply filters on the pop up as appropriate - perhaps just those within your ChurchSuite database or those not in ChurchSuite.
For events with "Sign up to the sequence" enabled, you'll see further filter options for Check-Ins and Dates, enabling you to further filter by just those who Checked into more than a certain number of events...
...or on the Dates options, those who Checked into selected dates within the sequence - each date selected is filtered with "OR" logic - i.e. 3rd May OR 10th May OR 17th May - giving a combined list of attendees for any of the selected dates (rather than a narrower list of just those who may have attended ALL of the selected dates).
Having selected the appropriate filters, click Proceed and the usual email or sms "compose" pop up is opened. Once you have composed your message, the message Preview populates with the filtered list of recipients and is ready to send.
Event communication logging
All sent event communications are logged in the Communication section at the bottom of the event's "View" page and also against the contacts in the Address Book and/or Children module (where the sign-ups or attendees are linked to the people in those modules).