College can be a dark and confusing time. Feeling called to do something about this and to uplift students through an introduction to the Bible, a small group of young pastors arrived at Washington State University in 2006 with a novel idea: to plant a collegiate church.
The popularity of their early “Resonate Sessions” in local coffee shops inspired the team to find a permanent space. Despite sending out what they later described as an awful invitation flyer, their only real challenge at Resonate’s first official worship session in 2007 was, as one member put it, “Guys, we don’t have enough chairs.”
Resonate Church was onto something. University students were eager for biblical teaching, and it was not only the students at WSU. Soon Resonate was planting collegiate churches across the Northwest. As they entered an exponential-growth phase, with new Resonate churches planting collegiate churches of their own, the organization faced a new challenge: finding an app to make it easy for its fast-growing, on-the-go team to communicate.
Resonate has been on a nonstop growth trajectory for a decade. As both its team and its church-planting movement grew, the organization needed an easier way to communicate.
When they rolled out Glip across the organization, the team found that even with hundreds of members across the Northwest, they could easily stay connected and productive.
Thanks to Glip, the Resonate team knows that no matter how much their organization grows, and it’s already multiplying, they have a collaboration tool to help keep their mission on track.
For more than a decade, Resonate Church has been growing strategically in its mission to bring Christian teaching to college students. Coffee-shop Bible discussions near Washington State University drew crowds, which led to a permanent campus location, which drew larger crowds, including University of Idaho students, which led to a church planting at that university. And that growth has never slowed, in fact, it’s sped up in recent years.
“Resonate has always had the multiplication mindset where one collegiate church would plant another and so on,” explains Jordan Nelson, Director of Operations, “Now we’re beginning an exponential growth stage, where we hope to plant 21 churches in college towns by 2021.”
Smart collegiate church planting requires a systematic approach.
Running any fast-growing organization requires the right systems and technologies. Which is why Resonate’s in-house network staff has built an infrastructure that gives its collegiate churches autonomy as well as support.
The staff manages accounting and graphic design for all network churches, for example. They also distribute video sermons, enabling their pastors to have consistent teaching across an increasing number of churches.
How can you collaborate effectively with hundreds of team members spread across hundreds of miles?
As Jordan explains, the network staff also manages the technology infrastructure for the local churches, and the diverse locations of these teams presented a tricky communications challenge.
“We have staff members, pastors, and volunteers spread across several college towns in Washington, Idaho, and Oregon,” he says. “Many of these people, particularly our volunteers and local pastors, spend their days not at a desk, but out on campus helping people and growing the organization. For a while, we got by using email, text messages, and a mixture of task-management tools. But with so many people on the team, that just became too burdensome.”
“I’ve rolled out a lot of apps to our staff over the years, and they’ve adopted Glip more quickly than any other. I think it’s because Glip is just so easy.”
Jordan Nelson, Director of Operations
Since Jordan rolled out the Glip app to the entire Resonate Church organization, he and his team have seen impressive results. “I’ll list just a few of the benefits we’ve experienced with Glip,” he says:
“Where we often took many hours or even a day or more to respond to an email or text message from another Resonate member, Glip let us set a new standard response time of one hour.”
“It’s easier than ever to bring people into long-running conversations and get them up to speed. Rather than having to send them a bunch of email threads and a document or two, now we just invite them to our Glip conversation and they find everything right there.”
“I’d even say that thanks to Glip, productivity has doubled.”
Today, Resonate Church faces the challenge of growing faster than any of its founding members ever anticipated and having to keep up with that rapid growth without losing team cohesion or the quality of work that Resonate has become so well-respected for across the Northwest.
As they continue to lean on the faith they’ve always had in the importance of their mission, and with a little help from Glip to keep the team connected and organized, the Resonate team knows they’ll be able to continue growing and spreading the word at an exponential rate.
“Even with dozens of staff, hundreds of volunteers, and church locations in several states, communicating is easy for us. Everyone just says, ‘Glip me!’”
Jordan Nelson, Director of Operations
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