Adding library items

In this article eyes

Overview of the library
Adding library item types
Adding library items
Adding ad hoc library items from a Plan or a Template
Reporting library item usage
Importing library items

Overview of the library

At the heart of the Planning module is your Library of plan items. Once added to the library, items can be used time and again on Plans and Templates. You can add library items individually, or import a CSV file of library items taken from another source

Before adding or importing Library items you'll first need to set up library item Types; the categories within which library items are grouped. For example, you might have item Types for

  • Set prayers
  • Songs and hymns
  • Elements of liturgy
  • Notices and announcements
  • Readings
  • Miscellaneous

The Planning module comes pre-populated with several commonly-used Types, which you can further customise, to remove if not needed. For each Type, you can optionally add custom Questions so that you can store question Responses for all the extra pieces of information you need for Library items of that Type. For example, for a 'Song' Type, in addition to the song 'Name', you may also want to record things like 'Artist', 'Key', and 'Tempo', but for 'Liturgy' Type library items you might wish to record different information, perhaps the 'Liturgy text'. Each Type can be customised so that you can keep all the type-specific library item details organised.

You can optionally enable CCLI tracking for any Type, although typically it's only needed on your 'Song' Type for tracking song usage over time, and for periodic CCLI reporting purposes.

There are a wide range of Type 'question' formats. In addition to Single Sentence and Paragraph formats, you can add Questions with Drop-Down List, Radio List, Checkbox List and Date Response options. The Question formats also include some other handy tools like a Bible 'verse picker', a Spotify 'song linker' and a Video 'file URL link' field.

Having set up Library item Types as explained in the next section, you can then begin to populate your Library, as explained later.

Adding library item types

The Planning module comes with several library item Types pre-installed. Before adding Library items you may wish to further customise or add your library item Types. Navigate to the Types section within the Planning module. From here you can View or Edit existing Types in the list, change the Order so that your commonly-used ones are at the top of the list, or add a new library item Type by clicking Add type.

Note: In the following worked example, we will ignore that a "Song" type is pre-installed in the Planning module, adding it afresh so that you can visualise all the Type customisation options available.

On the Add type pop-up, enter a suitable Name and select the Colour that will be used to distinguish library items of this Type on Plans and Templates. Optionally enter a default Duration that will be assigned to library items of this type when they are later added - you'll be able to override this default duration when adding library items. However, you wish to leave this field empty and later set a more accurate duration on an item-by-item basis. Finally, tick to enable CCLI tracking if you wish to track library item usage for CCLI reporting purposes. Enabling CCLI tracking enables a CCLI number field for library items of this Type, ensuring tracking of song usage in plans and the related CCLI reporting. Click Save to add the new Type.

After saving you'll be taken to the newly-added Type "View" page. You can return here at any time in the future to make further changes. From here you can optionally add questions - question responses enable you to store lots of helpful additional information associated with library items of this type. Click Add question.

On the Add question pop-up, enter the question Name e.g. "Author/artist", "Tempo", "Key" and select the response Type from the drop-down list. (For a full explanation of "Question response types", see the related support article). Depending on the question type you can also add options - click Add option. Set the question's Visibility - question responses can be hidden on plans. For example, a song's author/artist is helpful information for a song library but it may be superfluous information for those viewing a plan. Click Save to add the question.

Continue adding questions as required for this Type. When adding songs to the Library you will also be able to add this additional song information. Note that questions can be ordered - click the order icons in the Order column, which opens a pop-up within which questions can be ordered.

You can return to the Type "View" page at any time to make further changes. Be aware that Editing or Deleting questions and response options will affect existing data. Similarly, Deleting a Type entirely has significant consequences - all library items of the Type will also be deleted, and all plan and template items of the Type will be deleted too, including the item usage history and CCLI tracking - Delete Types with extreme caution!

In the next section, we'll look at how to begin building a Library of items, each categorised by Type. Before leaving the Type "View" page, note the Library tab. This tab lists all the library items of the Type. You can add and manage these library items here, but you may prefer to work within the Planning module's Library section (see next section).

Adding library items

The Planning module's Library is the core repository for all your songs and other library items, categorised by Type (see the previous section). You can Search within a long list - as you type in the search bar the list automatically filters to show matching results. You can also switch between viewing Active (the default) and Archived items, and further filter to only see library items of a selected Type.

Clicking Add library item opens a pop-up through which the library item's details are added. Begin by selecting the library item Type (required) under which the new item will be categorised. The selected Type determines which other Questions are shown on the form for completion. See the previous section for adding Types and type questions. Continue by completing the other fields of the form.

Clicking Save will add the new library item and redirect you to the item's "View" page, showing all the details just added. You can return here at any time in the future to make changes to the library item. This is also the place where you can upload and attach Files related to the library item and where you can view the library item's Usage - see the related support articles for further information on Adding files to library items and plans and Reporting library item usage.

Adding ad hoc library items from a Plan or a Template

When working with Plans and Templates, it may be that you've added ad hoc items that you wish to re-use by adding them to the Library directly from a plan or template. Here's how...

Working from a plan or template an Add to library option is shown for any plan item that is not already a Library item - if this option isn't shown it means the item is already in your Library.

Clicking Add to library opens a pop-up pre-populated with all the item details from the plan or template. Optionally make any changes necessary. The item will be added to the Library as the same Type it has on the plan or template. Click Save to complete the process.

Importing library items

In addition to adding library items individually, you can also import items. Working within the Library section of the module, select Import library items.

The Import library items page is divided into two sections - the top section is where you search/select and upload a previously-prepared CSV file...

...and the bottom section, which contains useful instructions for Creating your CSV file and the option to Download an example file.

Since each library item Type has type-specific Questions (see earlier in this article), you will need to produce a separate CSV file for each type of library item being imported. When you are ready to proceed, select the Type of items in the file, then select Choose file to browse and select the CSV file. Click Upload CSV File to proceed to the next stage.

After upload, a preview of the CSV file data is displayed. Each CSV Header field needs to be mapped to a field in the Planning module. For each CSV Header that matches a Type field in ChurchSuite, that field will be automatically selected in the Import As column. Any unrecognised CSV Header fields are distinguished with a yellow warning triangle and will not be imported. However, you can use the Import As drop-down selector to select the appropriate Type field to map that CSV Header. Once you are satisfied that all the CSV Header fields are mapped to the correct field in ChurchSuite, select Import All Records or Cancel if you need to abort and make further changes to your CSV file.

The uploaded items are now verified. Valid rows are distinguished by a green tick and any invalid rows are distinguished by a yellow warning triangle and the Errors listed. You can View, Edit (to correct an error) or Remove a row. You can Process valid items at any time - any invalid items will remain in the list until resolved or removed. Common errors are missing required data or data supplied in an incompatible format for the field. You can Pause or Cancel an import at any time, and you can later Resume an incomplete paused import.

Clicking Edit you can make changes to the data and correct errors before processing. In this example, the required library item Name is missing and can be added. Click Save to apply the changes.

You can resume an incomplete/paused import at any time. Click back into the Import library items section from the Library, and into the Imports tab to Resume or Cancel an import.

Reporting library item usage

It may be helpful to assess how much you use certain Library Items such as a particular song or video. This is easily done by clicking Library, selecting the relevant Item and clicking on the Usage tab.

The Usage Tab lists each instance that the Library item has been used historically in all plans (draft or published), along with additional information about the Plan, the Duration of the Item, Details, Comments and any associated Files relating to each particular use of the relevant Item.

For information on the use of CCLI-numbered songs, see the related support article.

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