About Planning Center

Planning Center by Ministry Centered Technologies is a suite of cloud-based applications that are used to support team leaders and members in planning, scheduling and managing church programs and events. The solution’s “Services” module supports tools to keep media organized. Users can upload and tag media and files to locate the right song or video for your service, then schedule and stay in contact with team members overseeing or participating in that service.

Planning Center provides a “Resources” module that allows leaders to reserve rooms and publish event calendars to manage church resources. The events, rooms and resources have their own calendar feed that syncs with calendar programs, including Outlook, iCal and Google Ca...


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Supported Operating System(s):

Web browser (OS agnostic)

888 Reviews of Planning Center

Average User Ratings

Overall

4.70 / 5 stars

Ease-of-use

4.5

Value for money

4.5

Customer support

4.5

Functionality

4.5

Ratings Snapshot

5 stars

(648)

648

4 stars

(211)

211

3 stars

(28)

28

2 stars

(1)

1

1 stars

(0)

0

Likelihood to Recommend

Not likely

Very likely

Showing 1 - 5 of 888 results

May 2020

Tyler from Heritage Park Baptist Church

Verified Reviewer

Company Size: 11-50 employees

Industry: Religious Institutions

Time Used: Less than 12 months

Review Source: Capterra


Ease-of-use

5.0

Value for money

5.0

Customer support

5.0

Functionality

4.0

May 2020

So. Much. Better.

I was the XP at a church that used Planning Center. I went to another church that used one of their main competitors. After 18 months, we are on Planning Center. I'm much happier and the rest of the staff is much happier. I think that pretty well sums it up.

Pros

When we switched from our previous software to Planning Center, I worked with our staff to see how it was going. The responses I got were always akin to "well, it is frustrating learning a new system...but this is better than what we were on." Basically, in one or two days our staff was less frustrated with Planning Center than they were continually with a system we had been on for three years. As we've been on it longer, the frustrations have decreased and the benefit to our church has increased. Moving to Planning Center has been the best organizational choice we've made in a long time. Oh, and it is about $100 (33%) cheaper each month. And that's on month-to-month vs an annual contract with the old guys. And when our online giving agreement runs out and we switch the Planning Center giving, we'll save another $200 or so a month. And their support is incredible, typically responding within an hour (vs 2 business days on the old platform).

Cons

To my understanding, Planning Center set out to make a great stand alone tool for Check Ins, a great tool for Registrations, a great tool for Giving, etc...to do this, they set up separate development teams for each module. I understand this, having worked with some tools that started as a great online director or great giving tool or great event tool and tried to expand to do much more. The result is often complicated bloat. I do think Planning Center's model largely avoided this because each thing has to stand on its own. In my estimation, I'd like to see some tweaks to certain modules, but overall each of them accomplishes what I need. The one drawback to this, though, is that the tools don't integrate quite as tightly as I'd like. Everything talks back to their People module, but sometimes it would be good to have them talk to each other a little more. E.g., when we set up an event in Check In, we also have to go into the Calendar module to set up the event to request the room. This can be a bit of a hassle. To be fair, it does seem like they are moving in this direction with new features, so hopefully their biggest weakness (to me) will continue to shrink! But, again...this is minor compared to the frustrations I've had with other systems. I've been on ones that I hated even logging into because I knew I was going to get mad. I genuinely like using Planning Center.

August 2020

Aaron from New Hope Wesleyan

Company Size: 2-10 employees

Industry: Religious Institutions

Time Used: Less than 12 months

Review Source: Capterra


Ease-of-use

4.0

Value for money

4.0

Customer support

5.0

Functionality

5.0

August 2020

Organization Made Easy!

Overall, Planning Center has helped our church in organization while also providing a great, resourceful, easy to use, customizable, and cosmetically pleasing choice of apps the work so well together and free up our time to work in other needed areas. It also has helped all of our staff be on the same page when going forward in our various ministries and events.

Pros

The variety of different apps that can help with all of our organization needs has been amazing. All the apps are easy to use, come with detailed tutorials so anyone can learn quickly, was able to be implemented into our website well, you can pick and choose which apps you want and skip the ones you may not need, and the customer service was fantastic at replying to support emails. Plus the church center app that can go on your phone makes utilizing these apps easy and cosmetically pleasing. There really just isn’t enough space to write all the pros that this product has.

Cons

The only 2 problems that can be found with this software is that when using the registration app, we are unable to make an event for one day but have multiple time slots to choose from and have to instead make 3 different events with those time slots which takes up more time. The second problem is that the price can be a little daunting and can start to add up quickly when choosing different apps at their various capacities which can limit some of the churches who might have interest.

Reasons for Choosing Planning Center

It is more expensive but is a much better multifunction tool and had a better customer service experience as opposed to having a very negative experience while waiting on live support chat for over 40 mins with tithely.

December 2018

Karen from Center of Praise Ministries

Company Size: 11-50 employees

Industry: Religious Institutions

Time Used: More than 2 years

Review Source: Capterra


Ease-of-use

3.0

Value for money

3.0

Customer support

3.0

Functionality

3.0

December 2018

Part of it Works for Us

At this point, it is used in a minimal way, to lay out our order of service and schedule 2 ministry teams out of the 10+ teams that serve at each of our services.

Pros

Makes scheduling and organizing our order of service very simple for the administration team. When an item such as teaching changes from 30 minutes to 40 minutes, the modifications are easy to implement without having to recalculate the time of day from one item to the next. When that same item is moved someplace else in the order of service it's a simple drag and drop and all times for the service are automaticallly adjusted.

Cons

Not a great tool for our volunteers. The scheduling module is a little difficult to train volunteers to use. They all give it a shot but most revert to using excel spreadsheets. Report templates, unless you are an html programmer, aren't flexible enough to give me the layout I am looking for. We tried to use it to check in our children but the unreliability of connecting and printing name tags caused huge delays, aggravated our parents and frustrated the volunteers. I am advised they have resolved that problem, however, due to their prior experience our children's church isn't willing to give it another chance.

Response from Planning Center

Replied December 2018

Hi Karen, Thanks for the review! Our support team is able to help you with some parts of coding those reports if you'd like to reach out to them for help, and give them an example of how you would like your report to look. They would also be able to give you some tips for making scheduling volunteers easier in Services. Sorry to hear that hardware issues were keeping your Children's Ministry from using Check-Ins efficiently. If they're willing to give it a second chance in the future, we'll be glad to help troubleshoot those problems up front.

July 2020

Marissa from Faith Church

Company Size: 51-200 employees

Industry: Religious Institutions

Time Used: More than 2 years

Review Source: Capterra


Ease-of-use

4.0

Value for money

5.0

Customer support

5.0

Functionality

5.0

July 2020

Planning Center Review

My overall experience with Planning Center would be amazing. I would recommend this software to many other churches.

Pros

I use Planning Center every single day in my job. I enjoy using the software because it is easy to use. It holds all of our 30,000 families from our church. It tracks all of their information. I can make registrations through Planning Center and the system tracks these registrations for me. There are countless other things Planning Center does and it is all in one place rather than using many different systems.

Cons

Honestly, there is nothing bad I can say about Planning Center. I really enjoy using it. It helps keep me grounded as an administrator.

February 2020

Wesley from City View Church

Company Size: 2-10 employees

Industry: Religious Institutions

Time Used: More than 2 years

Review Source: Capterra


Ease-of-use

3.0

Value for money

4.0

Customer support

5.0

Functionality

5.0

February 2020

Church Done Right!

Planning Center has streamlined our ministry operations and has allowed us the freedom to operate in a way that helps grow smaller churches into larger ones without skipping a beat.

Pros

Planning Center Online (PCO) has been amazing for our church over these last several years. PCO Services gives us what we need to schedule and plan our Sunday services without any trouble. We love the templates that PCO allows us to set up in order to duplicate a service style easily. Easter and Christmas every year are a breeze with PCO Services. We also use PCO Giving, Check-In, People, and Groups as our foundation of running the behind the scenes of our ministry. The user interface (UI) of each module is similar and easy to use, understand, and follow. I tell pastors about PCO all the time. Especially the People account, which is Free!

Cons

I do wish that PCO would create an app for each of its modules, such as groups. It would be a little easier for a Small Group Leader to access all that PCO Groups has to offer without having to open a computer. Also, the cost of each module seems to be adding up quickly. A "small church" with a tight budget may be put off by the cost. However, I can say that it is worth every penny if that church is a planning church.

Reasons for Choosing Planning Center

Ease of use and all around the incorporation of all of their modules and options.