Putting cell phones and e-mail addresses into the directory.

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dmaynes
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Putting cell phones and e-mail addresses into the directory.

Postby dmaynes » Sat May 16, 2009 6:17 am

There are enough members in my ward with personal cell phones now that many of the families (1) do not have a landline, or (2) do not answer the phone (i.e., landline) that is listed in the directory. This has been difficult because the printed directory is not helpful for contacting these members.

I have decided that our ward needs a "cell-phone and e-mail" directory. The directory that is available on the LUWS doesn't have the capability to attach individual cell phones and it won't list e-mail addresses unless the member is enrolled (and many members are choosing not to enroll).

Do any of you have suggestions for doing this? (For example: an ideal format for the directory layout.)

Are there specific requirements or challenges that you think I should be aware of? (For example: get permission from members to be listed.)

Thanks,
Dennis

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aebrown
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Postby aebrown » Sat May 16, 2009 7:08 am

dmaynes wrote:many of the families ... (2) do not answer the phone (i.e., landline) that is listed in the directory.


In this case, make sure you work with the ward clerk to change in MLS the household's primary phone number to be one that someone in the family will answer. That change will propagate to LUWS. I know you're asking about the issue of storing cell phone numbers, and this suggestion doesn't address that specifically, but the primary household phone number really does need to be a reasonable number.

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Postby Mikerowaved » Sat May 16, 2009 1:00 pm

dmaynes wrote:Are there specific requirements or challenges that you think I should be aware of? (For example: get permission from members to be listed.)

Thanks,
Dennis

The way it was explained to me was, members in the MLS database will also be listed in the LUWS directory of members. (Unfortunately, Preferred Names don't migrate over, so you end up with a directory of full given names unless someone changes them one by one. But that's a different topic.) If a member wishes to opt out of being listed, and they are not registered on the system, they can contact the LUWS admin or the bishop and ask for their info to be hidden. As you can see in the admin area, you can hide several things, or everything, for each person. Of course, if they are registered, they can do this themselves.
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Postby russellhltn » Sat May 16, 2009 1:56 pm

dmaynes wrote:Are there specific requirements or challenges that you think I should be aware of? (For example: get permission from members to be listed.)


I think the biggest issue is to keep your two databases in sync. You can't ignore MLS as it's the official membership system. And yet if you do a separate directory, you have to keep comparing it to MLS to make sure something didn't slip though the cracks.

You might want to look at this thread about MLS Companion. It might do what you want. If not, contact the developer and he may add it in.
Have you searched the Wiki?
Try using a Google search by adding "site:tech.lds.org/wiki" to the search criteria.

dmaynes
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Postby dmaynes » Sun May 17, 2009 10:53 am

Alan_Brown wrote:In this case, make sure you work with the ward clerk to change in MLS the household's primary phone number to be one that someone in the family will answer. That change will propagate to LUWS. I know you're asking about the issue of storing cell phone numbers, and this suggestion doesn't address that specifically, but the primary household phone number really does need to be a reasonable number.


The cell phone issue is difficult because people have to pay for both incoming and outgoing minutes. I have several households that do not list a primary phone number, but I know they have cell phones.

I realize the LUWS doesn't have a field for cell phones. The LUWS is a little slow in adapting to the changes we are seeing in how people use technology. At one time, people had one car per family. Now, they have one car or more per driver. And, they had one TV per family. Now, they have one per room. Phones have now reached the commodity point that families no longer have one.

But, I appreciate the suggestion about working with the clerk and MLS. The bishopric counselor suggested that we send a sign up sheet around. I think I need to indicate on the sheet, the "family phone number to be listed in MLS."

dmaynes
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Postby dmaynes » Sun May 17, 2009 11:01 am

Mikerowaved wrote:Unfortunately, Preferred Names don't migrate over, so you end up with a directory of full given names unless someone changes them one by one.


I am nearly finished with this task. It involved contacting all the families with children that have not yet been baptized because the list I received from MLS did not show their preferred names.

Mikerowaved wrote:If a member wishes to opt out of being listed, and they are not registered on the system, they can contact the LUWS admin or the bishop and ask for their info to be hidden. As you can see in the admin area, you can hide several things, or everything, for each person. Of course, if they are registered, they can do this themselves.


I believe you are saying that in order to remain in harmony with the intent of the directory and the Church that I need to make sure every person listed understands the information that will be listed. Additionally, they need to agree to the listing of whatever information is included on the directory.

dmaynes
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Postby dmaynes » Sun May 17, 2009 11:10 am

RussellHltn wrote:I think the biggest issue is to keep your two databases in sync. You can't ignore MLS as it's the official membership system. And yet if you do a separate directory, you have to keep comparing it to MLS to make sure something didn't slip though the cracks.

You might want to look at this thread about MLS Companion. It might do what you want. If not, contact the developer and he may add it in.


I appreciate the heads-up. I'm not a clerk so I don't have access to MLS. I'm sure that I can request the information from the clerks. I will check it out.

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Postby scgallafent » Mon May 18, 2009 2:01 pm

dmaynes wrote:But, I appreciate the suggestion about working with the clerk and MLS. The bishopric counselor suggested that we send a sign up sheet around. I think I need to indicate on the sheet, the "family phone number to be listed in MLS."

It might be better to say "Family phone number to be shown on ward lists." Some people won't have a clue what you mean when you say MLS.

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Postby childsdj » Thu May 21, 2009 2:07 pm

dmaynes wrote:T
I realize the LUWS doesn't have a field for cell phones. The LUWS is a little slow in adapting to the changes we are seeing in how people use technology. At one time, people had one car per family. Now, they have one car or more per driver. And, they had one TV per family. Now, they have one per room. Phones have now reached the commodity point that families no longer have one.



As with most items like this, it is not a technological hurdle that does not allow for more than one household phone number/email address but rather a policy. This has been discussed many times and has been reviewed through appropriate channels and as of right now the policy is the same. If it changes, the technology will change quickly after.

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Postby scion-p40 » Mon May 25, 2009 11:48 am

About a decade ago I was a member of a stake that split. I was the ward bulletin writer for my new ward. Before long, I found that people don't call to inform the bulletin person of announcements. It took many phone calls to reach people & gather info. I asked a few people in leadership positions if an email directory would help. Some said yes, but others felt that it might be exclusive. I talked to the bishop, who referred me to our new stake president. He asked, "Where do I sign up?!" So, with the stake president as the first name on the list & the bishop 2nd, I circulated sign up sheets. The spreadsheets contained the following fields:

last name
first name
first name (for husbands & wives--but I wasn't going to dictate who was listed first)
phone number (many of us had cells back then, but that wasn't my purpose & no one asked; the purpose of the phone # column was in case I misread or mistyped an email address)
h/w (home/work) designation for email address (back then quite a few were for work, so shooting off an email reminder on Friday night for a Sunday meeting would reach folks after the meeting)
email address

For the last month of each quarter, I circulated a list with the same fields and an "updates" column. I updated the list quarterly and circulated both hard and soft copies. Even after I was released from the ward bulletin, I kept this up for several years until I moved away from the area.

Having the list really improved communications in that new ward.


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