Sharing service plans
In this article
Introduction to plan pages
While module Users can access and manage plans within the Planning module, at some point you will want to share your plans with others, including those people who may have been assigned to certain plan items. In many contexts, there's an inherently collaborative process to creating Plans, meaning that they are often subject to further change as they evolve over time and as the Plan date nears. With this in mind, each published plan has a read-only Plan Page URL giving an up-to-date view of the latest plan, which can be shared with everyone who needs to know what's happening. Plan pages can be viewed in any browser on any device, without requiring any special authentication.
Published plan pages can be shared or made accessible:
- by email using a Send plan workflow that includes all the plan's people in the recipient list
- by email to those outside your church - such as a visiting speaker - by sharing the plan page URL in your message to them
- through rota reminder emails - on a rota-by-rota basis you can optionally 'Include plans', which will append a published plan page link to the rota's reminder. This method requires the rota and plan to be linked to the same service. See the related support article: Sending rota reminders
- in My ChurchSuite - plan page links are accessible from a rota view's Date actions and the All Rotas page in My Rotas. See our related support article: All rotas page in My ChurchSuite
- by sharing the plan page URL on any other preferred communications channels e.g. WhatsApp groups, Messenger, SMS. You can even print a plan page should you need to share a paper copy
Like viewing plans in the Planning module, a Plan Page contains full details of the running order of your plan items, including the names of any people assigned to each plan item, and access to any files linked to the plan e.g. chord charts, announcement slides, a sermon PowerPoint. Essentially, your visuals and worship teams will have everything they need in one place!
Publishing a plan
Plan Pages can't be shared until they have been Published. From a Draft plan "View" page click Publish. Note also the option to Preview plan page.
You can Publish multiple selected plans using the batch Publish action in the Plans section of the module. Draft plans show styled as italicised in the list.
Previewing the plan page
Once published, you can access the plan page - click Go to plan page.
The Plan Page opens to view in a new browser tab on your device, showing full details - the plan name, date, start time, and a plan item timeline. Hovering over items on the timeline surfaces details of each item listed underneath. On the day of the plan, a real-time progress indicator moves across the timeline to help you visualise if you're running on time.
Plan items are expandable (collapsed by default), revealing further details about each item, including any people assigned to the item and any linked files being shared within the plan. In the example below, expanding a Song reveals further details about the song key, tempo, meter, Spotify or Video rehearsal links, and any viewable/downloadable song files, like chord and lyric charts.
Where a plan page includes linked files, clicking on the Files count opens the Plan Page File Viewer - ideal for a musician's music stand...
...listing all the linked files on the left and a file view on the right. Typically the file list will be song files, such as chord and lyrics charts. PDFs and compatible chord chart files can be previewed with supported transposable file types including OnSong and ChordPro (.onsong, .chordpro. & .chopro) shown in a transposable view in the original file's Key and the option to Transpose.
Sharing plan pages with others
In this section, we'll explore some of the ways you might share plan pages. While Planning module users can always access and fully manage plans in ChurchSuite, you'll likely want to share your plans with others who need to know what's happening. See the related support article for further information on Linking people to plans.
Sending a plan by email
Having published a plan you'll want to send the plan to those who have been assigned to items on the plan. From the plan "View", select Send plan from the Communicate action.
You can now customise the plan email that ChurchSuite creates. On the Send plan pop-up, select the Options to be included in the email. Options include plan people, linked files, any library item type question responses for plan items, and the plan page link (embedded as a "More information" button in the email body). While the Plan Page embedded into the email only contains the selected options, the actual Plan Page link will contain all the options. Click Proceed to preview the email.
The Send email preview is displayed. Make any further customisation you wish to add. Click Preview Email...
The Recipients list is pre-populated with any plan people specified in the plan. Recipients can be added or removed if desired - only those in your Address Book and Children module can be selected as recipients. Click Send Email to send the plan.
The sent plan email is logged against each recipient's Communication log on their profile page in the Address Book and Children module.
Including plan page links in rota reminders
When customising the email reminders for a rota you have the option to Include plans. When enabled, links to plans are included in the body of the reminder email that is sent to each rota member. The rota and published plan must both be linked to the same service - this option is not shown if the rota is not linked to a service. Note also, that you can enable the Include plans option for a ministry so that all rotas for that ministry that are subsequently produced inherit the include plans setting.
Accessing plan pages through My ChurchSuite
Those serving on rotas linked to a Service with My ChurchSuite access can view the published plan pages from the respective Date action when viewing a rota in My Rotas. Choosing View plan will open the published plan page for that date to view. This action is only shown for rotas linked to a service that has linked plans, and only for dates that have published plans for that date and service.
Similarly, if you have enabled the All Rotas page for My Rotas, those with My ChurchSuite My Rotas access can access published Plans for a selected service date.
Sharing the plan page URL through other communication channels
When viewing a plan page - using the Go to plan page action from a plan 'View' page - you can Copy the page URL directly from your browser. You can then Paste the URL into an email, social media channel, SMS or any other communication channels you might use to share the plan page with everyone that needs to know what's happening.
Exporting plans to MediaShout
Organisations using MediaShout as their chosen song-word presentation software can easily export a plan to a MediaShout format file (version 6 format - support for version 7 will follow in the future when it's available for both Mac and Windows). Opening the downloaded file in MediaShout will populate all the plan items, ready for you to Insert lyrics, bible verses, liturgy or text against the appropriate plan items for your service or event. Here's how...
Working from a plan "View" page select Download MediaShout from the More actions menu.
Follow the on-screen instructions to save the MediaShout SSC file to your desktop. You'll need to transfer, share or send the downloaded file to the device/computer that runs your MediaShout software.
Working within MediaShout, Open the SSC file (or double-click the file to launch MediaShout and open the file). The plan items are listed in the left-hand column, ready for you to Insert lyrics, bible verses, liturgy or other presentation elements as desired.