The majority of pastors are on the go – not necessarily chained to their desks. That’s why having a hosted church management software solution (ChMS) can be the ideal solution for churches that are already using a desktop ChMS but desire a way to connect to the data online.

By the Book has been working hard to launch the hosted Roll Call solution for churches that want internet access to their Roll Call database, but don’t want the hassle of setting up and maintaining a virtual private network (VPN) or Port Forwarding.

We decided to offer the hosting solution because so many churches wanted to access Roll Call remotely,” says Kim Conley, co-owner of By The Book. “Even though there are many free options for doing this, we found that many ministries didn’t have the IT staff or technical know how to do it, so we decided to offer the service to help them out.”

Why have By the Book host your Roll Call Server software? 

  • Access Roll Call from any machine that has internet access and Roll Call Client installed.
  • Save money on hardware costs.  By The Book supplies the Roll Call Server machine.
  • Save money on IT staff.  By The Book handles all the maintenance of your Roll Call Server.
  • Peace of mind knowing they are handling all your backups.
  • Communications are encrypted for a high level of security.

How it works

For By The Book to host your Roll Call Server on the Cloud, there is a one-time set up fee of $75.00 and a monthly charge starting at $50. By The Book will install Roll Call Server software on their server machines, which are housed in a world class data center, and provide the church with a network address.  The church will need to install Roll Call Client software on all computers that may need access to Roll Call.  When the church launches Roll Call Client for the first time, they will need to enter that network address.

By The Book will still be responsible for installing the Roll Call Server software and will make sure all the server settings are optimized.  As patch releases are made available the company installs them for the church, so that the church always has the latest version of the software.

They will also backup the church’s data file and journal file (transactions since last backup) each day.  Backups will be maintained on an external drive as well as at a remote location.

Future Offerings

Later in 2012, By The Book is looking at developing a mobile phone and tablet app for child check-in and a fully web-based version of Roll Call which will offer church members the ability to login to update their profiles and view contributions.

In the December 2011 issue of Christian Computing Magazine, I wrote a feature article on By The Book that you might find interesting. If you’re a current Roll Call user and you’d like to share some of the most beneficial features of this software, our CTT readers would greatly appreciate your comments!

Lauren Hunter is a freelance writer, church technology PR consultant ( and founder of the blog ChurchTechToday (, Technology for Today’s Church.