Checking-out Check-in

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Current Version: McKinley 7.0

Checking-out Check-in

Making attendance tracking flexible, secure and trouble-free.

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Updates for McKinley 7.0

Below is a summary of the updates for this version.

  • Updated Attendance Analytics screenshots and callouts.
  • Added Configuring Attendance Reporting Block Settings section to Attendance Analytics chapter.
  • Added Rapid Attendance Entry chapter.
  • Added Search by Code option in the Check-in Manager chapter.
  • Added Note regarding Welcome screen and keyboard wedge technology in the Walkthroughs chapter.
  • Added note regarding barcodes and the Welcome screen to the Additional Check-In Options chapter.
  • Added note in Beyond Children's Check-In referencing the advanced ability to print labels for groups of a type that doesn't print labels.
  • Added Label Field Type for Group Attributes section to the Appendix - Advanced Options chapter.
  • Updated/corrected IP Address callout in Kiosk Configuration screen in Kiosks chapter.
  • Added Family Pre-Registration section to First Time Registration chapter.
  • Added Group Specific Attendance Analytics options in Attendance Analytics chapter.

Updates for McKinley 1.0

No updates made.

Updates for McKinley 2.0

No updates made.

Updates for McKinley 3.0

Below is a summary of the updates for this version.

  • Added tip about using the Labelary website when creating custom labels.
  • Clarified how the first visit icon is determined for check-in labels.

Updates for McKinley 5.0

Below is a summary of the updates for this version.

  • Documented the new check-in configuration screen and the settings that are now available.
  • Documented the new 'Family' check-in type.
  • Added information on setting up Attendance Analytics for group types other than check-in.
  • Documented location thresholds.

Updates for McKinley 4.0

Below is a summary of the updates for this version.

  • Documented the new ability to search by name on the check-in screens.
  • Updated Attendance Analysis chapter to Attendance Analytics, discussing Chart and Attendees modes.
  • Added new Cancel Checkout option on the Check-in Manager.
  • Documented the new Device Manager screens.
  • Documented the process to add a picture to a custom label.
  • Updated the steps to close the Windows check-in client.

Updates for McKinley 6.0

Below is a summary of the updates for this version.

  • Added information on the new check-in label editor.
  • Added information about new check-in area configuration options (Hide Photos, Prevent Inactive People, and Prevent Duplicate Check-in).
  • Added Additional Check-in Options chapter
  • Clarified Search Type field callout information of the Settings screenship in the Setting It All Up chapter.
  • Added Note regarding Welcome screen and keyboard wedge technology in the Walkthroughs chapter.
  • Added note regarding barcodes and the Welcome screen to the Additional Check-In Options chapter.

Updates for McKinley 8.0

Below is a summary of the updates for this version.

  • Added Family Pre-Registration section to First Time Registration chapter.
  • Added Group Specific Attendance Analytics options in Attendance Analytics chapter.
  • Updated age range configuration documentation in Setting It All Up chapter.
  • Added a section about texting parents from the Check-in Manager page (you're going to love this!)

Welcome

Attendance data is the backbone of any organization's information strategy. Not only can it provide safety and security to the children who attend your events, it also provides a window into each person's ongoing relationship with your organization.

As you read through this guide and start to think about configuring check-in for your organization, you'll realize the system has a ton of flexibility. Keep in mind that the downside of flexibility is complexity. To keep it simple, consider using the out-of-the-box configuration as much as possible, renaming locations, groups and service times as needed. As you get more comfortable with Rock, you can dive deeper into some of the more complex configurations.

Check-In Systems

Before we get into the details of Rock’s check-in system, let’s start with a broad overview of what check-in is and how it works.

In general terms, check-in involves a person attending a group at a location at a specific time. Each of these elements ties to a component in Rock. A person. A group or area. A location. A time (schedule). The check-in system consists of a series of screens that allow a guest to identify each of these elements and capture them in an electronic record. In many check-in systems, the process ends with some kind of identification label being printed.

Types of Digital Check-In Systems

Digital check-in systems have been in use for over a decade. Over the years these systems have developed into three basic categories:

  • Centralized self-service check-in
  • Decentralized check-in
  • Centralized attended check-in
There are pros and cons to each system. Let’s take a look at each.

Centralized Self-Service Check-In

With the centralized self-service model, attendees check themselves in at a main kiosk that serves multiple areas and rooms.

Pros:

  • Once people are familiar with the system, they become comfortable and efficient with the check-in process
  • Does not require as many volunteers
  • Families with multiple kids can check-in all of their kids at the same time

Cons:

  • Can be somewhat intimidating for first-time guests

Decentralized Check-In

Decentralized check-in places a kiosk in every room where check-in is required.

Pros:

  • Attendees get to visually select the room (considering the teacher and students in the room)
  • Can be fast since you don’t need to select the location and there are smaller lines due to the greater number of kiosks

Cons:

  • Higher equipment costs due to the number of kiosks and printers needed
  • Families with multiple kids of different ages need to go through the check-in process more than once
  • Increased support costs due to the number of kiosks required

Centralized Attended Check-In

In this model, attendees walk up to a kiosk that is manned by a volunteer who performs the check-in process for the guest.

Pros:

  • Good experience for first-time guests

Cons:

  • After the first check-in many people may prefer to do the process themselves
  • Must have a volunteer for each kiosk
  • Can be slower since there is an added communication layer

Check Out The Rock Shop:

While Rock does not have an attended check-in solution configured out-of-the-box, there is a third-party plug-in available from NewSpring Church in the Rock Shop, that will enable this form of check-in.

Check-In Configurations Available in Rock

Rock provides two different types of check-in configurations: family and individual.

Family check-in allows a family to check in multiple children at once. This system is best suited for situations when a family walks up to a central kiosk and checks in all of their children at the same time. Once the children are checked in, the parents take the children to their individual rooms.

The check-in process is similar for both systems. Rock defaults to the Family check-in configuration, but you can easily change this when configuring your check-in process. More on that in a bit.

While individual check-in is typically used for decentralized scenarios and family is typically used for centralized, there is no requirement that you stick to this pattern. You could choose to the use the family check-in configuration with a decentralized system, letting families check-in all of their children at the first location, then taking the kids to individual rooms without needing to check them in again. The system is designed to be flexible.

Learning the Lingo

Let's talk about vocabulary. Feel free to revisit this section as you go through the manual to clarify the meanings of these terms.

Term Definition
Check-in Configurations A check-in configuration is what you start with when configuring check-in. All the settings are associated with a particular configuration. When you start a check-in kiosk, one of the first things you'll be asked is which check-in configuration to use. Examples of check-in configurations include Volunteer Check-In and Weekend Kids Check-In.
Areas This is a high-level collection of related check-in groups. Typically, these will match your organizational structure. Within an area, you'll probably have several groups that individuals can check into. Areas allow you to organize your groups into collections of similar groups. Example areas in the default configuration include: Nursery/Preschool, Elementary, Jr High and High School. For those who like to know how things work under the hood, areas are simply Rock group types. For everyone else, it’s ok... just keep the hood closed.
Sub-Areas If needed you can create sub-areas, which act as a hierarchy of areas. Even though Rock allows it, we strongly encourage you to keep your structure simple. (Some of the largest organizations using Rock do so without the need of sub-areas.)
Group

This is the classification unit that a person checks into. A newborn would be checked into the Infants group while a second-grader would be checked into the Grades 2-3 group. Note that these are just examples. You can easily customize your groups.

Deeper Knowledge – While classification units are called groups, and they are actual Rock groups under the hood, individuals are not added as group members when they check in, since their relationship with the group is not permanent.

Locations If a group is what someone checks into, the location is where. In most cases this will be a room. Specifying locations makes sense for larger organizations that might have multiple rooms for each group.
Service Schedule Groups tell us what, locations tell us where, and the schedule tells us when. Starting to understand the structure? Again, this makes sense if you consider that most churches have multiple services.
Labels In most check-in scenarios, you'll want to print out some form of label or tag. These might be used for a nametag or a check-in/check-out token. Rock allows you to print as many (or few) labels as you want. It's also easy to customize these labels to your liking.
Kiosk A kiosk is the device that is used to process the check-in.
Printer The printer is what prints the labels. Rock allows you to configure where and how these labels get printed. More on that later...

Individual and Family Check-In in Rock

Before we get into the more technical aspects of configuration, let’s step back and take a general look at how individual and family check-in works in Rock.

Check-In Overview
Check-in Overview

The specific screens the guest will be guided through is based on whether they’re checking in an individual or a family, as well as the check-in system settings set up by the administrator. But as you can see, the process is similar for both.

Now let’s take a more specific look at the family check-in process. Here, Ted and Cindy Decker are checking in their children, Noah and Alex.

Family Check-In Walkthrough
Family Check-In Walkthrough
1
The Welcome screen is the waiting screen your guests will see when they walk up to the kiosk to check in. If no check-in locations are currently active, the guest will see a countdown for the opening time.
2
The Search By Phone screen allows guests to enter their phone number to begin the check-in process. By default, only four digits are required to perform the search, but like most check-in features, this is configurable. Since entering the last four digits reduces check-in time, you may want to share this tip with your guests.
3
The Families screen lists the families that match the phone number entered.
4
Rock displays a list of family members who are able to check in to any of the areas that have valid areas and groups. (More on that when we get to the Administration screen.) From here the guest can select all of the family members who are checking in.
5
The Select Time screen allows the guest to pick the times they are checking into, either a single time or more than one. If only one time is available, this screen will be skipped.
6
The Area Selection screen lists the check-in areas that are available for the current time and individual. This screen will only display if the child’s age spans the group in multiple areas.
7
The Group Selection screen lists the check-in groups that are valid for the current time and individual. If only one group is valid, this screen will be skipped.
8
The Location Selection screen will list all open locations for the group selected on the previous screen. If only one location is available, this screen will be skipped.

There is also an optional Ability Level screen that is displayed if any areas or groups selected have an ability level requirement (e.g., crawling, walking, potty-trained, etc.). This screen is used to filter the available areas and/or groups. You can learn more about it in the Ability Levels chapter below.

Previous Check-Ins:

By default, when accessing the Family Selection screen, family members who have previously checked in within the last 10 days will already be selected. If 10 days is too short (or too long) a timespan, you can change this value in the Check-in Configuration area. See the Setting It all Up section below for more information.

The process described above is practically the same for an individual, but the process is only done once rather than cycled through multiple family members.

As you can see, many of the screens will be skipped over if there is only one selection. This means if a family only has one teen, for example, they will only have to enter the phone number and select their family. The rest of the screens will be skipped and their label(s) will print. This makes check-in very quick and simple.

The Administration Screen

OK, ready to get a little more technical? Let’s take a look at the Administration Screen.

The Administration screen is where you begin to set up your check-in options.

Check-in Administration Screen
Admin Screen

The Administration screen is the first screen you come to when you launch the check-in system. From this screen you can configure the check-in session by selecting:

  • Check-in theme
  • Kiosk device
  • Check-in Configuration
  • Areas

The Check-in Theme field is where you select which look and feel you want to use for the check-in screens at that kiosk. You can learn more about the themes that ship with Rock in the Themes chapter below.

The Kiosk Device field is where you identify which kiosk you are configuring.

The Check-in Configuration field is where you select which check-in configuration you want to use for the kiosk.

The Area(s) and Additional Area(s) checkboxes are where you identify which check-in areas you want to enable for the kiosk. Rock’s check-in system will allow checking into any area from any number of configurations at the same time, but it can only use one type of configuration settings at a time. Area(s) are all of the areas that have been configured to use the selected kiosk device based on the selected Check-in Configuration. Additional Area(s) are any other areas also configured to use the selected kiosk device but from different check-in configurations.

The selections you make on this screen will be remembered for future sessions.

Tip:

You can also provide these configuration options through the query string.

Let’s ramp this up another notch and look at the types of customization you can do with Rock’s check -in system. Then we’ll dive into planning and configuration of the check-in system for your organization.

Types of Customization

We've mentioned several times that Rock lets you customize the check-in process in powerful ways. Here are some details on the different ways you can customize the system and the level of effort needed for each.

Type Level of Effort Description
Area, Group and Schedule Structure Easy In all likelihood no two organizations will have the same area, group and schedule for their check-in. Rock's check-in configuration tools make these changes a simple process.
Labels Easy/Moderate Depending on the type of customization required, labels can be easy or a bit tricky. Most of this depends on the level of graphics required for your labels. Read below for a deeper discussion about how to modify the labels.
Look and Feel Moderate While Rock ships with several different check-in themes, you can add your own with some basic knowledge of HTML/CSS and Less.
Workflow Process Difficult (but possible)

Rock's check-in process runs on top of the workflow engine. The check-in workflow handles actions such as selecting families from the phone number provided and selecting rooms that match the family member selected. Each step of the check-in process is controlled by a workflow activity or action. You can customize workflows to do certain tasks, such as checking room balance based on last name or family address. These types of changes do require deep knowledge of the workflow engine and possibly of writing custom code.

The out-of-the-box workflow is based on over 30 years of joint check-in experience of first-hand work with lots of organizations. It should fit the needs of all but a few. If you feel that you are one of the few organizations that need something different, you might confirm that the reasoning is based on strategy not preference. If it's strategic in nature, you might consider engaging a Rock consultant to assist you with the configuration and custom coding.

Sample Configurations

Before we get much further, let's stop and take a look at two different check-in configurations. The first is for our fictitious Rock Solid Church. It's also the default check-in configuration that ships with Rock. The second is a sample configuration for a larger church, Boulder Solid Church, that has two campuses. This second option will give you some ideas about how things can be modified to meet an organization's needs.

Rock Solid Church Configuration

Default Configuration
Default Configuration

Points of Interest

  1. Note how Jr High and High School have their own areas with only a single check-in group in each one. This is a preference. You could combine them into a single Youth Area and put both groups in it. In this case Rock Solid Church has broken them out for reporting reasons.
  2. Pay close attention to the age ranges in the groups. Notice how they are fairly wide. Wider ranges tend to work better because they give you some leeway in unique family edge cases. Also note that the age ranges overlap. It's important that there are no gaps in the age ranges.
  3. This church has decided to use a centralized kiosk for check-in. They have also defined a printer device for this kiosk.
  4. For simplicity's sake, we are not showing the mapping of the check-in schedule (service times) to the various locations (rooms). Keep in mind that each location can determine which service times it's available for.

Boulder Solid Church Configuration

Default Configuration
Large Configuration
Large Configuration

Points of Interest

  1. Notice that Boulder Solid Church has two campuses they call North and South. These two campuses can share the same check-in group, with each location (campus > room) being attached to the group. This is true even if the two campuses have different service times.
  2. Note how the North campus has two rooms (Bobcats & Turtles) for their K-1 group. By using schedules they can configure check-in to only use the second Turtle room for their most popular services.
  3. This church has configured a second kiosk in Rock that is dedicated to their youth ministry.
  4. You might be questioning the strategy of a church this size only using two check-in kiosks for the whole church. You'll learn later that a kiosk, as defined in Rock, is a configuration template that can be used by multiple physical machines.
  5. You've probably noticed that this configuration has more areas and groups. In some cases, like the kids' area, this configuration is the best fit for the structure of the buildings. In the teen area, it's more for reporting reasons since the youth are all in the same large room.

Planning Your Configuration

Before jumping into the configuration of the check-in system, it's important to take a step back and do some planning. No matter how well you know your organization's structure in your head, it's critical that you put it all down on paper. This will help you get the configuration done right the first time and reduce the chance for error. Be sure to consider the following:

  • What groups will you be checking into?
  • Are they broken down by age, ability, gender or grade?
  • How are these groups organized into areas?
  • What rooms/locations are used for each group?
  • Do these locations vary by:
    • Day of the week (e.g., Saturday vs. Sunday)
    • Service times
  • Will you have special events (think Christmas, Easter, etc.) that will impact your normal configuration? If so briefly write out how these will differ.
  • If you have multiple campuses, how does this change by campus?

Consistent Configuration:

We strongly encourage multi-site organizations to select just one area/group configuration as a standard. This will greatly simplify the attendance reporting and configuration. Of course, locations and schedules will need to be specific to the campus, but do try to keep the groups and areas consistent.

We've provided a Check-in Configuration Worksheet to help you plan your configuration. Use your answers above to complete the form.

Setting It All Up

With your configuration all documented (You did document it right?), let's jump in and start configuring check-in for your organization.

Simple Sample:

Keep in mind that sample configurations are already present at installation. Feel free to modify these settings, adding new items as needed.

Service Times

Let's start with something simple by configuring our service times (schedules). You'll use the values on this list later in the check-in configuration. They are used to help determine which services are active at any given time.

Editing A Schedule
Editing A Schedule
1 Schedule Menu Tree
Shows hierarchical list of schedules defined in Rock.
2 Schedule Name
The name to use for the schedule item.
3 Description
A brief description of what the schedule refers to and how it will be used.
4 Check-in Start/End Times
The times check-in will start (before the scheduled time) and end (after the scheduled time).
5 Recurrence Pattern
Definition of how often the schedule will reoccur.
  1. Configure your service times for check-in under Admin Tools > Check-in > Schedules > Service Times.
  2. Modify and, if needed, add additional services times to this list. If you have multiple campuses with different times, add each unique start time to this list. If two campuses share the same start time, you should only add it once.
  3. Be sure to set the correct check-in start and end times in the configuration. The sample values start check-in 30 minutes before each service starts and end 30 minutes after the start. Adjust these values to fit the needs of your organization.
  4. Click Edit Schedule to set the day, time and reoccurrence settings.
Schedule Builder
Schedule Builder

Taking Exception

Of course there will be times when your regular scheduled programming is interrupted by special events or holidays. For example, no Saturday service on Easter weekend. You can tell Rock to ignore your regular schedule for certain dates. This is called an exclusion, and there are two ways to set them up. Let's check them out.

Scheduled Exclusions
Scheduled Exclusions

The first way to set up an exclusion is at the schedule parent category level in the main Schedules page, found at Admin Tools > Check-In > Schedules. This is an easy way to inactivate all schedules in a category for specific date ranges. In the tree navigation, select the parent category you want to create an exclusion for, such as "Event Schedule" as shown in the screenshot above. Click the to name the exclusion and set the date parameters.

Schedule Builder
Schedule Builder Exclusion

The second way to set up an exclusion is at the schedule event (or child) level. From the Schedules page, drill down in the tree navigation to the specific event you want to create an exclusion for. Click the Edit button to display the schedule details for the event, then click Edit Schedule. In the Exclusions section of the Schedule Builder page, click Add Date Range to specify the exclusion parameters.

Locations

Next, let’s configure the locations where our children meet.

Location Details
Schedule Builder
  1. Navigate to Admin Tools > Check-in Configuration > Named Locations.
  2. Start by renaming the top-level campus.
  3. Next enter each building on your campus.
  4. Finally, add locations (or modify the existing ones) for each room that will need to be set up for check-in.

Areas and Groups

Rock comes with several pre-configured check-in types. Most organizations should be able to simply tweak what is already there using the following steps.

Check-in Configurator (Area)
Check-in Configurator (Area)
Check-in Configurator (Group)
Check-in Configurator (Group)
  1. Navigate to the check-in configuration screen Admin Tools > Check-in > Check-in Configuration.
  2. Select the Weekly Service Check-in Area.
  3. Now you'll see the sample configuration for check-in. Using the worksheet you completed in the section above, modify the check-in areas to meet your organization's structure. Note that area headings are blue, with their associated groups indented below in green. If your structure is vastly different, you may want to check with other Rock organizations to ensure that you're on the right track.
  4. Once you have your areas configured, move down to the groups under each area. You'll notice that groups have a green top border. For each area, configure the groups that are needed for your organization. For each group, consider and configure each of these items:
    1. Age Ranges: These are the ages of kids who should be allowed to check in to the group. You'll want these ranges to overlap a little to allow different abilities and grades to check in appropriately. You can use 0 to 3.999 to specify kids who are anywhere from 0 to 3 (but not yet 4) or (version 7.4) you can drop the decimal and use 0 to 3 -- Rock will know what you mean.
    2. Grades: For groups that are based on grades, enter the valid grades for the group.
    3. Gender (version 7.4): Groups can be configured by gender. If a gender is selected, only individuals of that gender will be able to check in to that group.
    4. Locations: Select all of the locations where this group will be held. For multi-site organizations, you can use a single group to cover all campuses by selecting the locations on each campus.
  5. Next, go back to each area and select the labels you want to print for the groups in these areas. More information on configuring labels can be found below.

No Labels

If for some reason you do not want labels, just delete them from the Area. It's that simple.

Settings

There are several settings that can be configured for the check-in type that control the behavior of check-in. While the default values are probably sufficient for most installations, you can change any of them to suit your particular needs. These are updated by selecting the Edit button on the Check-in Type. You get there from Admin Tools > Check-In > Check-in Configuration.

Editing Settings
Editing Settings
1 Name/Description
Be sure to add a detailed description. Your future self will thank you.
2 Check-in Type
This is where you select Individual vs. Family. As described in the sections above, this controls the screen flow when a family checks in. Using the Family check-in type allows a family to check-in multiple family members at one time.
3 Security Code Length
When Rock creates new security codes for labels, it will create the codes using the number of characters you specify in these fields. It will show the alpha-numeric characters first, then alpha characters, and then numeric characters. Typically you would configure just alpha-numeric characters or a combination of alpha and numeric (typically, you wouldn't use all three). we would recommend using codes that contain at least 3 characters, as you would be limiting the number of available codes with anything less than that.
4 Random Numeric Values
When using numeric values as part of the security code, should those numbers be randomly generated? If not, they will be generated in numeric order starting with 1.
5 Enable Manager Option
By default the Welcome screen in check-in displays a gear that can be used by a manager to close/open rooms, override age limits, etc. If you don't want this to be available, unselect this option.
6 Enable Override
If the manager option is enabled, you can still turn off the ability to override age and grade constraints, by unselecting this option.
7 Auto Select Days Back
This is the number of days back that Rock will look for a previous check-in when deciding whether a family member should be selected by default when using the Family check-in type.
8 Use Same Code for Family
When using the Family check-in type, you can optionally have each family member's labels print with the same code by selecting this option.
9 Use Same Service Options
When using the Family check-in type users will be asked to select the area, group, location for each person and each service time they selected. If you would like families to only have to select these options once for each person (i.e. not for each service), select this option. When selected, Rock will automatically select the same area, group, and location for the other service times assuming the same options are available.
10 Hide Photos
By default the Family check-in type will display a person's photo next to their name. Select this option if you do not want any photos displayed.
11 Prevent Inactive People
Select this option if you do not want people who have an inactive record status to be able to check in.
12 Prevent Duplicate Check-in
Selecting this option will result in people not being allowed to check in during a particular service time if they have already checked into any group/location already for that same time.
13 Search Type
Select how you'd like your families to search for their family (Phone Number, Name, Name & Phone, or Family Id). Remember, using anything besides Phone Number will require that a keyboard is available at each check-in kiosk. Also keep in mind that barcode scanning, RFID check-in and any other keyboard wedge technology is ready to use from the Welcome screen regardless of which option you choose here.
14 Maximum Number of Results
When searching for a family, this is the maximum number of families that will be returned.
15 Minimum Phone Number Length
User will be required to enter this many digits of their phone number before being able to search.
16 Maximum Phone Number Length
User won't be able to enter any more than this number of digits when searching.
17 Phone Search Type
When searching for families with a matching phone number, you can elect for Rock to search for phone numbers that end with the digits that were entered, or search for any phone numbers that contains those digits (anywhere in the number). The best choice probably depends on the size of your database. If you are a large organization with tens of thousands of phone numbers, you probably want to use the "ends with" option. This will require that your users know they need to enter the last digits of their phone number.
18 Regular Expression Filter
This is an advanced setting that can be used to remove any special characters from the search string before using it to search the database. This would only be needed if your kiosks have a keyboard that can be used to enter special characters.
19 Refresh Interval
The frequency (in seconds) that the kiosks should check for any updated configurations (i.e., closing a room).
20 Age is Required
If a family member doesn't have a birthday (i.e., age) should they still be able to check-in to group types and groups that have an age restriction?
21 Grade is Required
If a family member doesn't have a graduation date (i.e., grade) should they still be able to check in to group types and groups that have a grade restriction?
22 Display Location Count
When the Location Selection screen is displayed for families to choose a location to check a family member into, should that location include the current count of how many people have already checked into that location?

Location Schedules

Now that we have many of the details covered, we can schedule the locations and their availability. This allows you to configure the check-in to only allow certain rooms to be used at specific times.

  1. First head to Admin Tools > Check-in > Check-in Configuration.
  2. Select the Schedule button in lower right corner of the check-in type.
  3. Now you'll see a large grid. Each combination of location/group will have a row, while each possible schedule time will have a column. To make configuration easier, you may wish to filter the locations by a specific campus or building.
  4. Check the check box for each schedule time when you wish to allow check-in for the specific location/group.
  5. Don’t forget to click the Save button at the bottom of the screen.

All About Labels

Out-of-the-box, Rock comes with a standard set of labels for use with check-in. There are two different types of labels: plain-text and icon-based. The icon-based labels, while more attractive, require that you install a specific font on each of your printers. This really isn’t hard (we walk you through it below), but some organizations may want to keep it simple and stick with the plain-text labels. Each of these labels is discussed below, with some notes on their usage.

Label Description Sample
Child Label (Plain Text): This is the label that will be placed on the child. This is a plain-text version that does not require installing the rockcheckin.ttf font on each printer. Child Label Plain-Text
Child Label (Icons): This is an icon version of the child check-in label. Child Label
Note Label: This label highlights any allergy or legal notes as well as providing a place for writing custom notes. Note Label
Parent Label: This is the label that will be handed to the parents at check-in to be used as a token for checking the child out. Parents Label
Name Tag: This label can be used as a name tag for volunteer or event check-in. Name Tag

A Note On First Visit

The first visit check-in flag will display if it's the child's first time checking into a group of any type. The flag does not look at the 'First Visit' person attribute, instead it solely uses group attendance data.

Label Settings

There are a few things you can configure for labels. The default values are probably sufficient for most installations, but you can change any of them to suit your particular needs. You get there from Admin Tools > Check-In > Check-in Labels and then select the label you would like to edit.

Editing Settings
Editing Settings
1 Name
A unique name for the label.
2 Description
A description of the label.
3 File/Mime Type
This is where you would upload a new label file. The Creating Custom Labels section below gives an overview of how to create these files.
4 Merge Codes
The merge codes are used to map fields on the label to data that is printed on the label. Again, the Creating Custom Labels section below describes how to set up merge codes for your labels.
5 Print For Each
When using the Family check-in type, multiple family members can be checked in at the same time and each family member could be checking into a different location for each service time. Because of this, labels can be configured to print once per family, person or location. A 'Parent' label will print once per family, a 'Person' label will print once per person, and a 'Location' label will print once for each location that a person checks into.
6 Edit Label Contents
This button allows you to edit the contents of the label. This is for advanced users who are able to edit the label in it's native ZPL format. If you're just getting started you'll want to use the ZebraDesigner to modify your labels. We'll show this editor in the next section.
7 Reload Merge Fields
Pressing this button will reparse your label looking for updated merge fields.

Label Editor

The label editor is for advanced users who are able to edit the label in its native ZPL format. If you're just getting started you'll want to use the ZebraDesigner to modify your labels.

Label Editor
Label Editor
1 Label Contents
The contents editor shows the raw ZPL of your label. If you're comfortable with the ZPL language you can edit the file and save it back to the database.
2 Test Print To Device
This section of the editor allows you to print the label to the selected printer device.
3 Label Viewer
The label viewer allows you to see what your label will look like using the Labelary website. Note that this is not an exact representation of how it will print, so do a final print before you're done.

Kiosks

Kiosks are the devices used to complete the check-in process. Setting up kiosks allows you to customize the configuration of check-in for a specific device or set of devices. This is helpful if, for example, you have a set of kiosks in your youth area and only want them used for the services in that area.

The two main configuration points for the kiosk are:

  1. Locations: Kiosks are assigned to allow check-in for selected locations.
  2. Printing: Kiosks also help manage how and where printing takes place. See the Printing section for more options for label printing.

Configuring Kiosks

You can manage your check-in kiosks under Admin Tools > Check-in Configuration > Devices. Keep in mind that Rock supports multiple types of devices. Check-in kiosks are just one type. (Printers are also configured here.)

When the check-in system starts up, it shows a list of kiosks so the attendant can select which kiosk configuration to use.

It's also helpful to know that when you define a check-in kiosk configuration, it can be used on multiple physical machines at the same time. This means that when you define a check-in kiosk for use in your youth building, that definition can be used for each check-in computer in that area. Think of these configuration definitions as kiosk templates, not physical machines.

Whether you are adding a new kiosk or editing an existing one, you'll use the screen below to manage the configuration.

Kiosk Configuration
Kiosk Configuration
1 Name
The name is used at check-in startup to select the configuration to use for that session.
2 Description
A brief description documents the details of the configuration.
3 IP Address
Provide an IP address here if you want that address to be available for identification purposes. The Check-In Admin block checks for devices configured with the same IP address as the device being used for check-in. If it finds one, it automatically selects that device and all of the group types associated with it. Because this process is automatic, in this scenario the member would be taken directly to the Welcome screen rather than the Check-In Admin screen. On a related note, the Enable Kiosk Match By Name field in the Check-In Admin block settings searches for devices based on both IP address and hostname when looking for a matching kiosk.
4 Point/Geo-fence
This allows you to define the latitude/longitude and geo-fence of the kiosk device. This is currently not used by the kiosk device type but will be used in the future to support applications such as cellphone based check-in.
5 Print Settings
These three settings define how printing will work. Be sure to read more in the Printing section.
  1. Print Using: Tells the kiosk how to determine which printer to use.
    1. Device Printer: Uses the printer defined in the Printer setting below
    2. Location Printer: Uses the printer defined for the location
    3. Group Type: Uses the print logic defined by the group type
  2. Printer: If you selected Device Printer above, you will need to select a printer to print to.
  3. Print From: While the previous two settings helped define where to print to, this setting determines where to print from.
    1. Client: This is the best option, but it assumes that you will be using the iPad application or Windows application. If you are running the check-in inside a web-browser you won’t be able to print from the client.
    2. Server: With this option, the printing will be done from the web server. This requires the web server to be on the same network as the printer. If you are hosting Rock on an external webhost, printing from the server will not be an option.
6 Locations
This setting allows you to define which locations the kiosk is serving. This will limit the location options that are displayed to the guest. For centralized check-in you will want to enable all locations. Since locations are hierarchical in nature (they have parent and child locations), you can select a parent location and all of its children will also be automatically selected.

Locations

Locations configure where individuals can check in. Think of them like buildings or rooms for your check-in. Locations are tied to check-in groups and enabled through schedules. Let's take a look at an example to see how they work.

Sample Configuration
Check-in Locations

The diagram above shows a configuration for a large church's Three Year Olds check-in group. As you can see, the church has two campuses it calls North and South and each of these campuses has multiple locations (aka, rooms) for their three-year-olds. Based on attendance patterns, all of these rooms are not needed during all services. In this configuration, the Crickets Room is not set up to be used during the second service of the day.

Editing Locations

Locations are edited under Admin Tools > Check-in Configuration > Named Locations. Locations are hierarchical in nature, so build them out to match the structure of your buildings. A configuration from the diagram above is show below.

Named Locations
Check-in Locations

Scheduling Locations

Scheduling when locations are going to be used is configured under Admin Tools > Check-in > Check-in Configuration > Schedules.

Opening / Closing Locations

We've seen how you can enable or disable a location based on a schedule. Each location also has an open/closed state. Say for instance you want the Bears Room to be used for your 9:00 am service, but need to be able to close it if it reaches capacity. Once it reaches capacity, you can close the room from the Check-in Manager (more info on this below) and it will no longer be available as an option for check-in.

Location Thresholds

In addition to simply opening and closing rooms manually, you can also configure locations to have threshold limits for the number of people that can be checked into the location at once. These limits are evaluated during check-in and once they are reached, the location will automatically stop being available as an option for people to check into.

  1. Threshold: If this number is reached, check-in will not allow people to check in to the location unless a manager overrides the threshold number.
  2. Threshold (Absolute): Once this number is reached, the check-in will absolutely not allow people to check in to the location at all, ever… even if a manager attempts to override the threshold number.

Printing

As we mentioned in the Welcome section, Rock's check-in is very flexible. That is especially true when it comes to printing. What printer you print to and where the printing takes place (client or server) is completely customizable. While this is very powerful, it can be a bit confusing. To help get you started, we have outlined a simple approach that should work for most organizations. We'll also dive a little deeper for those who want more options.

A Simple Approach to Printing

The recommended approach to printing is to always print from the client using the printer defined on the client. While this is a simple approach, it should meet the needs of most organizations.

  • We recommend that you use either the iPad or Windows client for running the check-in.
  • On your check-in kiosk configuration set the Print Using setting to Device, leave the Printer setting blank and choose Client for the Print From setting. See the Kiosk section for more on these settings.
  • Configure the iPad/Windows application to print to a specific printer.

Diving Deeper Into Printing

Ok, so the simple approach doesn't work. Never fear, we have many more options for you. When we break down the printing process, there are two bits of information that need to be determined: where to print and how to print. Let's look at each in detail.

Where to Print

The flowchart below breaks down the logic of how Rock determines where to print the check-in labels.

Determining Where To Print
Printing Diagram
1
If using the iPad or Windows application, you can set a printer override that diverts all printing to the printer you define on the client.
2
If the kiosk device’s Print Using is set to Device Printer, the printer defined by the kiosk device will be used. These settings can be found under Admin Tools > Check-in Configuration > Devices.
3
If the Print Using is set to Location, then the printer defined by the group's location will be used. The location's printer is defined under Admin Tools > Check-in Configuration > Named Locations.
4
Finally, if the Print Using is set to Group Type, then the Print Using setting of the Group Type will be considered. This setting can be configured to get the print device from the Location or the Kiosk Device. This is set under Admin Tools > General Settings > Group Types.

Quick Shortcut:

This may seem a bit complex. You might be wondering why all this is needed. If you want to get creative, these features will allow you to customize label printing so that some groups print at the device and other groups print inside the actual room. Remember to keep it simple. You can define the printer on the kiosk and forget the chart above. It'll be there when you need it.

How to Print

Determining how to print is much easier than figuring out where to print. You can print either from the server or the client. This is determined on the kiosk configuration under Admin Tools > Check-in Configuration > Devices. But wait, there are a couple of considerations for each of these options:

  • Client: To be able to print from the client you must use either the iPad or Windows applications. This is the method you will use when your Rock server is hosted externally.
  • Server: To print from the server you must be sure that the server is on the same network as the printers (or more accurately, the server must be able to route IP to the printers). If you are hosting Rock externally, you won’t be able to print from the server unless you do something crazy like a VPN between your hosted server and local printers. And you're not crazy.

Label Size?

Before you get too far into printing labels, we should probably mention that the size of the default labels that ship with Rock is 4 x 2 inches. If you plan on using the built-in labels, this is the size you should purchase.

You can of course create your own labels to work on any size stock you choose (as often happens when switching from another system and you already have a bunch of, say, 3 x 2 stock) but more about that in the Creating Custom Labels section.

Ability Levels

We've already seen that you can filter groups by age ranges and grades. There's one more criterion you can use: ability levels. It's common for infants and preschoolers to stay in certain rooms until they achieve a special milestone activity such as crawling or potty-training. Rock can help you track and select these levels within the check-in process. Let’s see how it works.

Ability Level Walkthrough
Ability Levels
1 Initial Level Set
The first time a child who matches the age range of ability levels checks in they will be asked which ability-level they meet.
2 Ability Level Set
When the parent selects the ability level for their child it will be stored in the Ability Level person attribute on their Person Profile. Feel free to update their level here if needed in the future.
3 Subsequent Check-Ins
Future check-ins will display their current ability and fade out previous levels. Parents can update the setting at any time. They can even select from the previous levels if needed.

How Ability Levels Are Stored

Ability levels are simply a person attribute that can be used as a filter to select a check-in group. If you go to the Extended Attributes tab of a Person Profile page, you’ll see the Ability Level attribute in the Childhood Information section. This is the attribute that will be considered when filtering groups. Rock comes with three ability levels configured: Infant, Crawling or Walking and Potty-Trained. You saw in the walkthrough above that an individual, or more likely their parents, could update this ability level during each check-in. You can also change the ability level behind the scenes on the Person Profile page.

Configuring Ability Levels

Not all check-in groups care about ability levels. Once you leave the preschool area they aren't that useful. (Imagine the responses you'd get if you asked high school students if they were potty-trained!) To enable ability levels, first you need to set your check-in area (the default configuration is Nursery) to inherit from Check-in by Ability Level under Admin Tools > Check-in > Check-in Configuration > Areas and Groups. This will tell all the groups in this area that they can define an ability level.

Ability Level Area Configuration
Ability Level Area Configuration
1 Inherit From
Set the group's Inherit From property to Ability Level to enable the check-in for ability levels.

Once an area has been configured to inherit from Check-in by Ability Level you'll see that the groups assigned to that area now have an Ability Level setting. This will be the filter that is used to present options to the individual during check-in.

Ability Level Group Configuration
Ability Level Group Configuration
1Ability Level
Select the groups ability level.

When Ability Levels Are Shown

Due to the potential awkwardness of the ability level selection with older children you might be wondering when the selection screen is shown. This screen is only shown when the following criteria are met:

  1. The kiosk is configured to check-in for an area that inherits from Check-in Ability Levels
  2. The individual being checked in matches the age ranges of the groups with ability levels.

Adding Ability Levels

Adding additional ability levels is a simple process. But you should refrain from adding too many levels because it can confuse your guests. To edit or add levels simply edit the Ability Level Defined Type Admin Tools > Check-in > Ability Levels.

Note:

The order of the levels is very important. The order that they are shown in the Defined Type is the order they will be displayed on the check-in screens.

First Time Registration

When new people show up for the first time, you'll need to enter them into the system before they can check in. The best way to enter these families is under People > New Family.

New Family
New Family

If you are using a paper registration card and entering the data into the system, keep in mind you don't need to enter all of the data right away. You only need to enter these six key points to get started:

  • Parents' names
  • Children’s names
  • Children’s birth dates
  • Children’s grades (if in grade school)
  • Phone numbers
  • Allergies and legal notes

You can enter other contact information like addresses and emails later. This really helps speed up the registration process for first time guests.

Important:

It's critical that you enter a child's birthdate before the family attempts to check in. Without a birthdate none of the age filters will work. Also, if you've configured your check-in groups to filter on grade, it's highly recommended that you enter those right away. If you don't, it will fall back to using age, but the grade is usually a better (read: narrower) filter.

Self-Service Coming Soon:

The New Family screen does not allow you to enter phone numbers and allergy/legal notes. This must be done on the Person Profile screen. We hope to add specific registration screens soon to streamline the entry process and even allow a self-service capability. Stay tuned.

Family Pre-Registration

The Family Registration block (available in v7.4 and newer only) can be used by families to pre-register before attending a service for the first time. Registering ahead of time makes the check-in process faster and easier. By default, the Family Registration block is included in the external site on the Connect page.

Family Registration Screen
Family Registration Screen

You can customize the Family Registration page by changing the block settings on the external site.

Family Registration Block Settings
Family Registration Block Settings
1 Show Campus:
Select 'Yes' to display the Campus selection field.
2 Default Campus:
If the Campus selection field is displayed, you can designate a default campus to be displayed.
3 Planned Visit Date:
This field determines how the Planned Visit Date field will be displayed. Select 'Hide', 'Optional' or 'Required'. The Planned Visit Date value is not saved anywhere. It is only used if launching a workflow, or it can be used in the Lava to redirect the guest after they are done completing the screen. (Note: If both the Campus and Planned Visit Date fields are hidden, the entire Visit information section will not be displayed.)
4 Family Attributes:
Enter any family attributes you want displayed. The attributes will appear to the right of the Address field on the Family Registration screen. Any attributes that are configured as ‘required’ will require the guest to provide a value.
5 Allow Updates:
Select 'Yes' if you want the block to automatically assume the guest who is logged in is updating information for their own family. If 'Yes' is selected, when a guest is logged in, the current names of each family member will not be editable. If 'No' is selected, the block will automatically assume a new family is being entered, regardless of whether a guest is logged in or not.
6 Auto Match:
Select 'Yes' if you want the block to attempt to find a matching person in Rock when a new adult is being added, rather than creating a new person. Rock will identify a match if one (and only one) person with the same first/last name and email address matches the adult being added.
7 Connection Status:
Designate the connection status to use when creating a new person.
8 Record Status:
Designate the record status to use when creating a new person.
9 Workflow Types:
Select any optional workflows you want to launch after the guest has entered the information. For any workflows launched, the block will set the entity for the workflow to the family that is being created. It will also try to set any of the following workflow attribute values if they exist on the workflow type:
  • ParentIds: A comma-delimited list of the person IDs for each adult
  • ChildIds: A comma-delimited list of the person IDs for each child
  • PlannedVisitDate: The value entered in the Planned Visit Date field
  • 10 Redirect URL:
    Enter the URL you want to redirect the guest to after they are finished entering the family information. This field supports Lava, and the block will pass the following fields (in addition to common fields):
  • Family: The family that is being created, including adults and children
  • RelatedChildren: A collection of any children that are not included in the primary family
  • ParentIds: A comma-delimited list of the person IDs for each adult
  • ChildIds: A comma-delimited list of the person IDs for each child
  • PlannedVisitDate: The value entered in the Planned Visit Date field
  • 11 Adult Fields:
    The fields in this section determine how the fields in the Adult Information section of the Family Registration screen will be displayed. Select options according to your organization’s preferences.
    12 Child Fields:
    The fields in this section determine how the fields in the Child section of the Family Registration screen will be displayed. Select options according to your organization’s preferences.
    13 Known Relationship Types:
    Select the known relationship type roles that should be displayed as an option for each child. The value ‘Child’ will always be included, even if it is not an existing known relationship type.
    14 Same Family Known Relationship Types:
    Select the known relationship type roles that, if selected, should not actually create the relationship, but rather just add the child to the same family as the adults. In most cases, ‘Child’ will be the only value included in this list. Any values included in this list that are not in the Known Relationship Types list will be ignored.
    15 Can Check-in Known Relationship Types
    Select the known relationship type roles that, if selected, should also create an additional ‘Can Check-in’ relationship. This is only necessary if the role that is selected does not have the ‘Allow Check-in’ option.

    Check-In Manager

    It's critical for growing organizations to be able to view check-in data in real-time and react by opening and closing locations in response. Rock provides a check-in management site that gives your staff a dashboard of live check-in data and lets them respond to needs as they occur in real-time.

    The check-in manager can be loaded from the address http://[your-rock-server]/checkinmanager. On this initial screen you'll be asked to select a check-in configuration type.

    Check-in Manager
    Check-in Manager
    1 Campus Selector
    Selects the campus for the data view.
    2 Attendance Chart
    Shows real-time check-in counts for the last two hours. On the home screen the count is for all of the areas and groups defined for the check-in configuration type selected. As you drill down through the areas and groups, the counts will reflect the area or group selected.
    3 Person Search
    Allows you to search for a specific person and view their recent check-in information.
    4 Check-in Areas
    A list of check-in areas with counts. Selecting one of these will drill down to show sub-areas and groups.
    Check-in Manager Screen Flow
    Check-in Manager Screenflow
    1
    The check-in manager home screen as shown above.
    2
    This is where you drill-down to view groups under the Nursery/Preschool area.
    3
    This screen lists the locations under the Crawlers/Walkers group. From here you can open or close the location.
    4
    The details of the Kittens room. From this screen you can also open or close the room and even see all the children checked into the location. You'll also notice a 'Cancel Check-out' button next to each name. This is useful if you need to remove a child from a room.

    Closing a Room:

    When you close a room using the check-in manager it can take several seconds for the room to show closed on the kiosks, depending on the Refresh Interval setting of the current check-in configuration. If your kiosks aren't reacting fast enough to room closures, it could be that you have the Refresh Interval set too high.

    Searching for Individuals

    Check-in Manager Search
    Check-in Manager Search
    1
    Shows a list of matching individual search results. Next to the name is the last time the individual checked into a group in this check-in configuration type.
    2
    Selecting an individual will show their most recent check-in dates. It will also show a list of family members and phone numbers tied to the individual.
    3
    In this case, selecting a parent allows us to get their contact information in a snap. Clicking their phone number will even dial your cell phone for you!

    Searching by Code

    You can also search for a person by the check-in code assigned to them by the check-in system. To make this option available, you must first enable it in the Check-in Manager block settings. Select "Yes" in the Search by Code field of the block setting screen. You can then conduct the search in the same way as detailed above, entering the check-in code in the search field rather than the person's name. Remember, check-in codes are only used once per day.

    Device Manager

    While you can manage many aspects of a kiosk device from the Check-in Manager you can also mange the device from the actual kiosk. Below we'll discuss the various capabilities of these features.

    Logging In

    To access the Device Kiosk simply press the gear icon at the bottom right of the main check-in screen. This will bring up the screen below.

    Device Manager Authentication

    From this screen you can get a quick view of the counts for rooms configured to this kiosk. You can also enter your PIN to access the device manager.

    Setting a PIN

    To set a PIN, go to the Security tab on a person's Profile and add a new User Account. Choose PIN Authentication for the Authentication Provider, and enter the desired PIN as the User Name.

    Device Manager

    Once you're in the device manager you will see the screen below. This screen allows you to open/close rooms that have been configured for this kiosk. It also allows you to Override a child. This simply means that you can check-in a child to a room without considering the rooms age or grade ranges. When you select the Override button you will see the standard Search screen. Everything will operate the same, but the rooms configured age and grade ranges will be ignored.

    Device Manager

    Schedule Locations

    From the main screen above you can also choose the Schedule Locations button. This screen allows you to alter the room schedules. This is normally done in the Rock Admin screens ( Admin Tools > Check-in > Check-in Configuration > Schedules) but you can also enable / disable the schedules for the kiosks configured rooms here too.

    Device Manager Schedules

    Attendance Analytics

    While there are a number of ways to access attendance data using Data Views and SQL reports, Rock also provides powerful analytics capabilities that you can access from Tools > Reporting > Attendance Analytics. This powerful tool should be able to answer any question you throw at it. Let's see what's possible.

    This block operates in two modes: Chart and Attendees.

    Chart Mode

    When in chart mode, the analytics block will report back the count of the attendees who match the criteria you've provided. This is great when you're looking for numbers for a specific weekend or viewing attendance over time.

    Chart Mode
    1 Attendance Type
    The first step you must do is to select the type of attendance that you'd like to report. Most often you'll probably be interested in check-in data so select Weekend Service Check-in Area.
    2 Date Range
    The most important criteria you will provide is the date range. This date range picker is very powerful and allows you to select many different types of date ranges. To help reduce confusion, the label above it shows the exact dates that are currently being used for the filter.
    3 Group By Setting
    This determines how the attendance data should be grouped for the graph. Typically, this will be by week, but you may want to get a monthly or yearly graph too.
    3 Schedules
    Use this dropdown menu if you want to filter by specific schedules, such as only Sunday morning services. Hold down shift to select multiple times or events. Leave it blank if you don't want schedules to be included in your filter.
    5 Campuses
    If your church has multiple campuses, you can select the one you're currently interested in.
    6 Groups
    Next you can filter which check-in groups (usually age ranges) you'd like to view in your analysis. If your organization has a lot of groups, you can change the block settings to display your groups as a dropdown menu, which makes finding and selecting groups easier. To learn how to change this display, see Configuring Attendance Reporting Block Settings below.
    7 Limit By Data View
    This is an advanced setting that allows you to apply even more filter options to your criteria. For instance, let's say you only want to report on girls. You could easily make a data view with this gender filter and use it here to only show girls.
    8 Copy Link
    Did you configure the attendance analytics block to provide the perfect snapshot of your attendance? Want to share that with a colleague? The Copy Link button lets you do exactly that.
    9 Update
    Since the block has to crunch through a ton of data to show its results, the graph will only refresh when you process the Update button.
    10 Graph By
    Sometimes you may want to only see one series on your graph (the Total option) but other times you'd like to see multiple series. This setting allows you to configure what types of series you'd like displayed.
    11 Graph
    Yep...this is the graph.
    12 Show Data
    Sometimes you want a pretty picture, other times you need raw data. The good news is that you can have both!

    Attendee Mode

    Now that you see how you can see how to get numbers, let's look at how you can see the individuals who make up those numbers. Clicking the Attendees button will hide the graph and show you the individuals behind the data.

    Much of the block works in the same way as the graph mode, but here are a few of the differences.

    Attendee Mode
    1 Filter
    The filter allows you to show all the attendees or special attendees. We discuss these filters in detail below.
    2 Return Type
    Sometimes you want the attendees (usually children) but other times you want to convert the list to the parents (or children) of the attendees.
    3 Columns
    If you look carefully, you'll notice that the number and types of columns change based on your criteria. Normally you'll see a column for each week in the date range with a checkmark if they attended that week. If you select to Group By month or year however, it will show a column for that period type instead.

    Filters

    By Visit

    Many times you'll want to filter out only the first-time visitors. That's easy! Just use the By Visit filter. You can select from the first to fifth visits.

    Filter By Visit

    Note that the date range is important to this filter. It will show anyone who has had a first visit during the provided range.

    You'll also notice a No visit option at the end. This will show members of the selected groups that did not attend at all during the selected date range. Keep in mind though that children are not members of most weekend service groups. This option is more for small groups or service groups that children are members of.

    Ministry Idea:

    Hopefully you're already seeing that this filter provides an easy way to send emails or letters to parents of first-time visitors.

    Pattern

    Perhaps you want to find kids who have stopped coming or maybe who come often. The pattern filter can help with either case.

    Filter By Pattern

    As you can see, you can filter by certain attendance and non-attendance patterns.

    Configuring Attendance Reporting Block Settings

    You can configure the Attendance Reporting block to service other type of check-in scenarios, such as volunteer or serving team check-in. In the Group Types section, select which group types you want to use for your analytics. Ensure that the group type you select is a top-level type that contains the groups you wish to report on.

    The Attendance Reporting block settings is also where you can choose whether to display all of the groups in your organization as a list on the screen, or to use a group dropdown menu instead. If you want to use a dropdown menu, seelct No in the Show All Groups field.

    Filter By Pattern

    Group Specific Attendance Analytics (version 7.4)

    Version 7.4 includes additional Attendance Reporting block settings that allow you to filter data by a specific group ID, as well as additional display options. This option is intended for group leaders to use as part of their Group Leader toolbox.

    Additional Attendance Reporting Block Settings (version 7.4)

    Selecting a specific group in the Group Specific field will tell the block to only display attendance for that group. When a group ID is used, the Merge People, Bulk Update, and Merge Document options on the Attendance Analytics screen will be hidden.

    The Show Schedule Filter, Show Campus Filter, and Show View By Option settings give you control over whether or not these options are displayed on the Attendance Analytics screen.

    Final Pieces

    We have a couple of final items to mention, both of which can be found at the top of the Attendance Analytics screen.

    Check-In Detail

    This button will take you to the attendance data that drives the analytics. This allows you to edit the data.

    Help

    We've provided a lot of built-in help to this block to assist you in remembering all of these details. When in doubt, open this panel up.

    Printers

    Rock's check-in requires the use of specific Zebra printers. Rock has been tested on the following models:

    1. GX420d / GK420d - These are defacto standard desktop printers used in countless check-in systems.
    2. QLn series - These are battery powered mobile printers for specialized applications (read: you need to walk around with it).
    3. LP2844-Z - These oldies but goodies have been replaced with newer models, but if you still have them, they should work. Oh, and the 'Z' in the name is really important, as a plain-old LP2844 doesn't talk ZPL, which is necessary for Rock.
    4. ZD500 - This model is more expensive than the others but comes equipped with support for the newer a/n 5Ghz wireless standards, which we discuss below.
    5. TSC TTP-245C - While not a Zebra printer, we're including it here because we know it works. We don't recommend buying this printer over a Zebra (they're not as reliable), but again, if you happen to have them they should work.

    While it's possible that other Zebra models could work (technically any printer that supports printing via ZPL should work) we've only tested with the models above.

    We recommend that when purchasing these Zebra printers, you get ones with built-in Ethernet ports. This allows you to print from either the server or the iPad application. If you currently have models that do not have Ethernet ports, you can make them work but you will need to use the Windows client to enable printing via USB, or enter into the land of wireless print servers...

    What's That About Wi-Fi?:

    While using a printer with an Ethernet port is always the most reliable option, there may be situations where you need a wireless printer: when you want a truly mobile (walk around) experience, when "mobile" kiosks get moved around the facility, or when there's just no option for wired Ethernet where you want the kiosk to sit.

    Unfortunately, the state of Wi-Fi in printers today is... not great. The Zebra GK/GX models are most popular, but their Wi-Fi option uses the ancient 802.11b/g standard which should be avoided in modern Wi-Fi networks. Seriously, do not implement anything new that uses 802.11b/g. Your network admin will thank you. That leaves us with the aformentioned QLn series, or the high-end ZD500, both of which support more modern 802.11a/n standards. Most importantly, these two models are "dual band", which means they can operate in both the 2.4GHz and 5GHz bands, making them much more flexbile and reliable in modern Wi-Fi networks.

    There is another option to consider: a wireless print server connected to a USB printer. Through extensive testing, we have found that a great working combination is an Apple Airport Express unit (also dual band Wi-Fi) acting as a wireless print server connected to a USB GK/GX420d. In such a setup, Rock prints to the IP address of the Airport, which then sends the job on to the USB printer. It's fast and remarkably reliable, assuming you have a great Wi-Fi infrastructure and not a $20 cheap access point. It's possible there are other wireless print server / printer combos that work just as well, but we've found that these things can be really picky and there's far more that doesn't work well together than does. This particular combo is known to work very well. These are advanced configurations that will likely involve the coordination of your IT staff (or at least a geeky friend) to get set up properly, but we just wanted you to know it's possible.

    Other Printer Vendors:

    While we may add support for other print vendors in the future, we currently support only Zebras. Based on our long experience with check-in systems, we feel that they are the best option. While purchase price can be more expensive than other makes, you'll find that their total cost of ownership will be less over time. Zebras are built to last for many years and their labels can be purchased for much less than other vendors. (The difference in labels alone can make up for the difference in printer price in less than one year.)

    Defining Printers in Rock

    For Simplified Printing:

    If you are using the simplified printer setup where you are printing from the client and specifying the printer in the iPad or Windows application, you do not need to define the printers in Rock.

    To add printers in Rock for selection when configuring locations, group-types or kiosks, follow the steps below:

    1. Navigate to the Devices page under Admin Tools > Check-in Configuration > Devices.
    2. Select a printer device to edit or add a new printer.
    3. From the device details screen:
      1. Give your printer a name.
      2. Provide the IP address for your printer.
      3. Select the device type of Printer.

    Printer Details
    Printer Details

    Now that your printers are defined, you can configure them to be used on either locations Admin Settings > Check-in Configuration > Named Locations or kiosks Admin Settings > Check-in Configuration > Devices.

    Check-In Relationships

    There will be times when you'll want to allow individuals outside of a family to check in children. To make this easy, Rock allows you to add relationships between individuals.

    Known Relationships

    From a Person Profile page, you can define Known Relationships. The Allow Check In relationship allows you to grant check-in rights to a person outside of a child's immediate family.

    To add a known relationship to an individual, complete the following steps:

    1. Go to the Person Profile page for the child.
    2. Click the [+] button on the Known Relationship block.
    3. Select the Relationship Type of Allow Check-in by.
    4. Select the person who should be allowed to check the child in.
    5. Click the Save button.

    After following these steps, anyone in the family of the person you selected will be allowed to check in the child.

    Adding Check-In Abilities to Other Known Relationships

    Rock ships with several other Known Relationships such as grandparent, step-parent, etc. Out-of-the-box these relationships do not have check-in rights applied to them. You can easily change that behavior though by following the steps below:

    1. Navigate to Admin Tools > General Settings > Group Types > Known Relationships.
    2. Select the role you would like to add check-in capabilities to.
    3. Check the Can Check-in checkbox.
    4. Click the Save button on the role dialog and then Save again on the Group Type screen.

    Check-In Kiosk Options

    The easiest way to run Rock's check-in system is to simply open a web browser on a desktop or tablet and navigate to http://[yourserver]/checkin. Rock also provides a native iPad application and Windows application. Let's explore the different strengths of these three platforms.

    Platform Print From Server Local Network Printing Local USB Printing Notes
    Browser-Based X The easiest method for running check-in, but all printing must be done from the server. (This will only work if your server is on the same network as the printers.)
    iPad Application X X This application is available for free from the Apple App Store. The application provides a simple tablet interface to the Rock check-in system. It also allows you to print directly from the iPad to a networked printer, allowing the server to be hosted remotely.
    Windows Application X X X The Windows check-in application can be downloaded from Admin Tools > Power Tools > External Applications. This application allows you to print to a USB-connected printer as well as network-based printers.

    Externally Hosted Servers:

    If your Rock server is hosted outside your organization, you will need to use either the iPad application or Windows application to enable local printing.

    iPad Application

    While the normal check-in screens run really well in mobile Safari, we have created a native iPad application to host the check-in experience. This application can be downloaded for free from the Apple App Store. The application hosts the same Rock check-in screens hosted on your Rock server but also adds the ability to print straight from the iPad to your network-connected printers. The application can also cache the labels, which increases check-in performance.

    Configuration

    After installing the application from the App Store and running it for the first time, you'll be prompted to enter the address of the check-in pages you want to use for the application. For most organizations this address will be http://[your-rock-server]/checkin.

    iPad Configuration
    iPad Configuration

    Navigating Complex Configurations:

    Organizations with multiple check-in configurations might want to point to a simple navigation page that allows the user to select the check-in configuration on load.

    Once you provide this address, all subsequent launches will load this address on startup. If you want to modify this address later, or access advanced configuration settings, you can select Settings on your iPad and scroll down to the Rock Check-in application settings. From there you can adjust the following configurations.

    Setting Description
    Check-in Address This is the initial page that will load when the application launches.
    Enabling Label Caching This setting will cache the loading of check-in labels, which keeps them from being downloaded on each check-in.
    Cache Duration This determines how often the labels will be re-downloaded. The cache can also be expired by stopping the application and restarting.
    Printer Override This setting has the effect of always printing from the iPad to the printer IP address you provide.

    Note About iPad Restrictions:

    It's not uncommon when using iPad kiosks to "lock down" the ipad as much as possible via the use of iPad Restrictions, to prevent users from changing the configuration or using it in a way that wasn't intended. We have discovered a minor issue in iOS 10 where restricting the use of Safari Browser prevents the Rock check-in app from working properly. (Check-in worked fine in iOS 9 and earlier.) So be aware that you won't be able to disable the use of Safari when running iOS 10 or newer if you want the Rock app to function.

    Windows Client

    If you're planning on running the check-in kiosk on a PC platform, the Windows Client provides a simple and powerful hosting experience. The client application can be downloaded from your Rock install under Admin Tools > Power Tools > External Applications.

    Configuration

    After running the setup application, you'll have a Rock Check-in icon in your Start Menu and desktop. When you launch the application you'll see the setting screen. Unlike the iPad application you'll see this screen on every launch, but the settings you select will be remembered for you. Below is a summary of these settings.

    First Middle Initial
    Check-in Address This is the initial page that will load when the application launches.
    Enabling Label Caching This setting will cache the loading of check-in labels, which keeps them from being downloaded on each check-in.
    Cache Duration This determines how often the labels will be re-downloaded. The cache can also be expired by stopping the application and restarting.
    Printer Override This setting has the effect of always printing from the iPad to the printer IP address you provide in this setting.
    Printer List Under the Printer Override setting you will see a list of local printers configured in Windows. This allows you to print directly to a USB printer.

    Closing the Windows Client

    After pressing the Start button, the check-in application will load the initial check-in screen. When you are ready to exit, simply press in the upper left of the screen six times in three seconds to close the application. This will close the check-in application.

    URL Parameters

    By specifying additional parameters in the URL of the check-in site it's possible to pass additional information or override the default behavior of check-in. For example, if your check-in is located at examplechurch.com/checkin, you could use the url examplechurch.com/checkin/2/14/18,19 to load the kiosk with the id of 2, use the check-in configuration with an id of 14, and the group types with the id of 18 and 19. This is really useful if you have specific devices that only ever load the same configuration. It's also possible to override the theme by appending a ?theme parameter to the end of your address, for example examplechurch.com/checkin?theme=CheckinBlueCrystal. These parameters are configured using Routes, which you can learn more about in the Designing and Building Websites Using Rock guide.

    Going Deeper With Areas

    We've already spent some time on areas in the earlier configuration but let's dig a little deeper. By now you know that areas are a way of categorizing your check-in groups. They also help to:

    • Define which tags will be printed when checking into any of the groups assigned to the area.
    • Provide configuration templates by setting the group type for the check-in groups. (More on this in a minute.)
    • Structure attendance reporting.

    How Areas Assist With Configuration

    The check-in system is a rich pairing of Rock's workflow engine and groups system. Under the hood, Areas are really just Group Types while check-in groups are, well, Groups. Before continuing on with this section we highly recommend you stop and read the Rock Your Groups guide to get a solid background on Rock's group capabilities, paying special attention to the Group Types section. Don't worry we'll wait...

    Now that you have a good understanding of groups and group types let's continue. Since check-in areas determine the group types for their groups, you can configure attributes for the groups by modifying the area group type. That's a mouthful, but it will make more sense when you look at the group types under Admin Tools > General Settings > Group Types. Here you'll see each of the areas you've defined using the check-in configuration screens. If you click on them you'll see some familiar attributes like Age Range and Grade Range. The check-in configuration screens are really a simplified group type and group editor especially designed for check-in. You could do all of the configuration using the normal group type editor and group viewer, but it would be much more difficult.

    Using Group Type Inheritance

    Imagine what a pain it would be to have to add attributes like Age Range to every new check-in group you create. Make one typo and your check-in might break. That's where group type inheritance comes to your aid.

    You'll notice that there are some pre-configured group types called Check-in by Age, Check-in by Grade and Check-in by Ability Level. You can probably guess by their names what each one does. If you're sharp (and we know that you are) you may have also noticed that these group types have a purpose defined as Check-in Filter. A group type’s Purpose is really just a way of telling you what it's used for. In this case, giving a group type the purpose of Check-in Filter helps Rock know when to show it on certain screens. Nothing magic, we promise.

    Now you can start to see how check-in is knitted together behind the scenes. You might be asking, "I get the inheritance but what if I need a group to inherit from more than one group type?" Brilliant! We have that same problem, too. You might notice that groups like Jr High have a need for both the Age Range attribute AND the Grade Range attribute. But a group type can inherit from only one group type.

    From your reading in the Rock Your Groups guide, you may remember the concept of group type hierarchies. In this case, both the Check-in by Grade and Check-in by Ability Level inherit from Check-in by Age. So areas that inherit from them get the attributes from both. This complicated behind-the-scenes concept really serves to keep things simple for you.

    Check-In Test Area

    You may have noticed an area called Check-in Test Area. This area is used to help you test your kiosk configuration and label printing. Since most areas and groups are only configured to allow check-in during certain schedules, they aren't that helpful for testing. The Check-in Test Area is configured to be available all the time.

    Themes

    Rock ships with three different check-in themes: one that has an outdoors/park feel, one that has an adventure look, and a blue-colored theme which can be used more for adult check-in types such as volunteer check-in.

    Rock Check-in Themes
    Themes

    Change That Logo

    The Rock logo on the Blue Crystal theme isn't there to promote Rock. It's there as a placeholder, giving you the option to add your own logo with one simple file change.

    There are two ways to activate a theme:

    1. You can select the theme to use during each check-in session on the check-in admin page that is displayed when you first start the check-in process at http://[your-rock-server]/checkin.
    2. You can temporarily change the theme by appending '?theme=' in the address of your browser on a check-in page. This is a good solution when you'd like to support multiple check-in themes with a simple configuration.

    Creating New Themes

    While standard themes might work for many organizations, some may wish to create a custom theme. This is pretty simple if you have some web design experience. Follow the steps below:

    1. Download our Photoshop PSD check-in theme design template from: http://storage.rockrms.com/resources/Check-in-Template-v1_0_0.psd
    2. Edit this template by:
      1. Changing the background to an image of your choosing. It should be a retina-sized image (2696 x 2048).
      2. Changing the colors on the assets (buttons, headers, etc.) to suit your needs and compliment your background colors.
      3. Hiding the assets layer and saving the background to your desktop as background@2x.jpg.
      4. Re-sizing the file to 50% and saving this to your desktop as background.jpg.
    3. Go to the RockWeb\Themes\ folder on your server (or better yet - development environment) and make the following edits:
      1. Make a copy of the existing CheckinPark\ theme folder (along with its subfolders).
      2. Overwrite the two background images in the \Assets\Images\ folder with the ones you created earlier.
      3. Edit the \CSS\checkin-theme.less and change the fonts and colors of the named assets (the things you modified in the PSD) found in the Variables section of the file.
      4. If you need additional styling, put your changes in the Custom Overrides section of the file.
      5. Compile your Less into CSS.
    4. Test your theme by appending '?theme=' to the address of one of your check-in pages.

    Installing Fonts On Zebra Printers

    If you want to use custom fonts or icons instead of plain text on your labels, you'll need to install the necessary font files on each printer used for check-in. To get started, you'll need to install the Zebra Designer software. This is a free program that will help you manage your zebra printers and create labels. See the Creating Custom Labels chapter for more information on installing this software.

    After installing the Zebra Designer software, follow the steps outlined in the video Downloading fonts to the printer found at: https://www.zebra.com/content/dam/zebra/videos/en-us/software-tutorials/zd-pro/zd2-font-downloader-en.mp4/jcr:content/renditions/original

    This tutorial will walk you through the process step by step. Be sure to pause the video as you go.

    Icon Fonts

    Rock has created a specific icon font just for check-in labels. You can download this font from: http://storage.rockrms.com/resources/rockcheckin.ttf. To install the font, open Fonts in Windows Control Panel and drag your downloaded rockcheckin.ttf into it.

    This font applies specific FontAwesome icons to the same merge fields used by the plain-text labels. You can create a similar font file for your custom needs at: http://fontello.com/.

    Timesaving Tip

    Note that when using the Zebra Fonts and Graphics Downloader application, you will be given the option to either Download all characters or Download selected characters. It is important that you choose Download Selected Characters, then select the rockcheckin font with a 26pt size. (If the rockcheckin font doesn't show up in the list, it means you haven't copied it to your fonts directory on that machine.)

    Go ahead and select all characters in the font. You never know when you might need a special icon on a future label! If you're wondering why you can't just choose Download all characters in the first place, it's because this option does NOT allow you to choose the size (26pt) and you will end up with a 100pt rock font in your printer, which is so big you'll be unable to position the icons correctly, and you'll waste a day or two figuring this out. Don't ask us how we know this. You're welcome.

    Creating Custom Labels

    You can create your own labels for check-in with the free Zebra Designer software. Once you've created the labels, you can upload them to Rock and apply them to various check-in areas. Let's walk through that process step-by-step.

    Installing Zebra Designer

    ZebraDesigner is a WYSIWYG design tool for designing ZPL formatted labels. While Zebra has several different versions of the software the free ZebraDesigner has everything you'll need to make labels.

    Don't Go Pro:

    The 'Pro' version doesn’t have any additional features necessary for creating check-in labels. It only adds capabilities such as embedding RFID codes.

    To install Zebra Designer, follow these steps:

    1. Download the ZebraDesigner Software.
    2. Run the setup, selecting all of the defaults.
    3. Launch the application. The first time it's run, it will ask you to install a ZDesigner print driver. Select the Add Printer button to add this driver.
    4. Walk through the wizard steps until you reach the Select Printer screen. Here, select the printer model you'll be working with. We use the GX 420d or the LP 2844-Z.
    5. Next, you'll need to pick the port where the printer is attached. While it's easier to select a printer connected through USB, connecting to one via IP would allow it to also be used from Rock. To connect it via IP, first get the IP address of the printer (press and hold the feed button until it flashes once, then release. A network configuration label should be printed that lists the printer’s IP.) Next, press the Add Port... button and type in the IP address in both the Port Name and IP Address Field. Finally, press OK. Select this new port and click Next.
    6. Double check that the Launch installation of Zebra Font Downloader Setup Wizard is checked and click Next.
    7. Walk through the setup wizard.
    8. Congratulations! The ZebraDesigner is now installed. You should now be able to open the program, select a default label and print it to the printer you configured.

    For more information, read the ZebraDesign User Guide.

    Creating Your First Basic Label

    Follow the steps below to create a simple check-in label. We'll talk about more advanced features in just a bit:

    1. Open ZebraDesigner.
    2. Create a new blank label by selecting File > New from the menu. You can skip the Select Stock screen if you'd like. (This option is to select the type of sticker you are using. Like selecting a paper weight/finish for a regular printer.) On the Page Size screen, enter the size of your labels (often 4x2). Select the print orientation of your label on the Label Layout screen. (It might seem counter-intuitive, but you need to select the portrait orientation. Trust us, we went through stacks of labels figuring this out.) Finally, enter your label canvas width (4x2) and click Finish. You should now have a blank label.
    3. Add a text field to the label with the following:
      1. Fixed text
      2. Your church name
      3. Font set to Zebra and sized to 18pt
    4. Add an additional text field to the label with:
      1. Variable text
      2. Font 'Zebra 0' and sized to 24pt
      3. Variable type Keyboard input from second screen
      4. Prompt of Nick Name
      5. Max size of 24
      6. Value is required
      7. Format is Alphanumeric
      8. No prefix or suffix text
    5. Print your label to the printer to see the result.
    6. Save your label as a .lbl file for future edits.
    7. When complete, create the ZPL file (which will export with the extension of .prn.) for the label by enabling Print to File on the print screen. When prompted for the variable data, enter the Rock merge field (in this case NickName). When you click Print, the save dialog will be displayed.
    8. Open Rock Check-in Label page under Admin Tools > Check-in Configuration > Check-in Labels.
    9. Add the check-in label. Once you upload the ZPL file (.prn) you should see the merge field opens with the text field you created. Link the NickName to the Nick Name merge field and delete the field that contains your church's name.

    Your simple label is now ready to be used in Rock. To use it, follow the steps below:

    1. Open up the check-in configurator Admin Tools > Check-in Configuration > Check-in Configuration.
    2. Determine the check-in configuration type you want to add it to (e.g., Weekly Service Check-in Area) and select the Groups / Locations button.
    3. Expand the check-in area you want to add the new label to.
    4. Click the [+] button to add the label.
    5. Click the Save button to complete the configuration.

    Your new label should now print at the completion of each check-in for that area.

    Merge Fields

    You might be wondering where that merge field came from and what others are available for your use. If so, we like the way you think! Merge fields are created as Defined Values under Admin Tools > Check-in > Label Merge Fields. There you will see all of the merge fields currently set up. Pretty much everything you see on the labels is a merge field. You'll also see that merge fields are simple fragments of Lava matched to a keyword.

    For instance the Birthday Icon merge field is simply:

                {% if Person.DaysToBirthday <= 7="" %}b{%="" endif="" %}="">

    This liquid looks at the birthdate of the person checking in and if it's within seven days it prints the letter 'B' (or a birthday present icon).

    You can see a list of all of the fields available for you to use in your Liquid by pressing the Show/Hide Merge Fields button of the defined type. Impressive, isn't it?

    Adding a Person Photo

    If you need a photo in your nametag, you can use your newly-aquired custom label knowledge to make it happen. Just follow the steps below:

    1. As described in the last section, add a new Label Merge Field with a value of Person Photo and a MergeField containing "{{ Person | ZebraPhoto }}".
    2. While editing your custom label's ZPL file (.prn), add a new line with the keyword Photo as seen in this snippet.
      ^LL812
      ...
      ^FDPhoto^FS
      ...
      ^XZ
      
    3. Specify the X,Y placement of the photo in your label design file with the ^FO Field Origin command and a ^XG (Recall Graphic) name and extension with an exact value of "LOGO.PNG" as seen in this sample snippet:
      ...
      ^FO25,68^XGR:LOGO.PNG,1,1^FS
      ...
      
    4. Lastly, when you upload your new check-in label's ZPL file (.prn) into Rock, link the PHOTO to the Person Photo merge field.

    The photo of the person checking in should now appear on the label nametag when they check in. You can find more details on the ZebraPhoto Lava filter described in the Person section of the Lava documentation.

    Best Practices and Lessons Learned

    Creating labels is easy using the ZebraDesigner software. Below are a few best practices to help you create the highest quality labels:

    • When you're working with images, be sure to make the image the exact size you want on the label. (Do not stretch it larger or smaller.) The best way to achieve this is to create the label first in Photoshop. Set your Photoshop file to be the same size in inches as your label with a DPI of 203. If you adjust the image size in the Zebra Designer you’ll get a bad case of the jaggies (a pixelated look).
    • Only use embedded printer fonts. These fonts are noted with a small printer icon in the ZebraDesigner font picker. If you would like to use a different font be sure to upload it to the printer. (Note: You’ll need to do this to each printer that will be used in the check-in process.) For instructions on how to do this, see the section Installing Fonts on Zebra Printers. Using normal TrueType fonts (noted with a 'TT') will not work. Think of them as the forbidden fruit. Zebra puts them there to tempt you, but they lead to the shame of ugly labels.
    • If you create some truly custom labels, you will likely run into issues with things like centered or justified text. There is a bug in ZebraDesigner where the size of a field on the rendered (PRN file) label is incorrect (even though it looks perfect in the Designer app), and you end up with a jumble of text printed over itself when trying to print the label. If you run into this issue, you can edit the label's ZPL directly via the Edit Label Content button after uploading your label into Rock under Admin Tools > Check-in Configuration > Check-In Labels This lets you play with the field's coordinates and length and see your changes in real time until you get it right.

    Important:

    If you are manually updating the contents of your label file, make sure that you do not add line breaks when defining a code that will get merged. The check-in application will be looking for the codes in the file by doing a regular expression match on each line to see if it matches a pattern of *^FT*^FD[code]^FS* where * is any characters and [code] is the code to be merged. If you add line-breaks, the pattern may not match.

    Equally important, if you create your own Merge Fields in Rock for your custom labels, do not add line-breaks to your Lava to make it pretty. Line-breaks can cause the wrong icons to print on your label instead of the icon you specified.

    Beyond Children's Check-In

    While much of this document has focused on using check-in for childcare activities, Rock is capable of much more. Below we'll discuss a few ideas on how to extend check-in:

    Serving Groups

    Serving groups are one of the pre-configured group types in Rock. There are many benefits to having people check in when they serve. To help you gather that data, we've configured the serving groups to allow check-in. All you need to do is provide two settings for each group to help Rock know where and when to allow check-in. Let's take a look at how to do this.

    Configuring Serving Groups For Checkin
    Configuring Serving Groups For Checkin
    1
    1. Edit the group from People > Group Viewer.
    3
    2. Expand the Meeting Details panel and click the button if no location has been set, or the button if one has.
    2
    Select a Location for the meeting spot. This will be used to help determine which kiosk device should handle the check-in. It’s best to choose a broad location (like a campus instead of a specific room), because this allows your group to be visible to the check-in kiosk without a lot of extra configuration. See how we're saving you all this time?
    3
    Select a Schedule to determine when the check-in should be active.

    Voila! Your serving group is now ready for checking in.

    Double Check:

    Make sure that the check-in kiosk you are using is configured for the location you chose for the group.

    Configuring New Group Types for Check-in

    Now that you've seen the power of the dark-side how serving groups can check in, we bet you're wondering how to configure other group types for check-in. Just follow these steps.

    Configuring A New Group Type For Check-In
    Configuring A New Group Type For Checkin
    1
    Edit your group type under Admin Tools > General Settings > Group Types.
    3
    Configure the Location Selection Modes to use Named Locations.
    2
    Make sure Enable Location Schedules is enabled.
    4
    Add the Location Type of Meeting Location.

    Once enabled, you'll still need to add the meeting details just like we illustrated in the Serving Groups section above.

    Well done. You are now a check-in whiz. You can properly configure check-in for any group type.

    Got Labels?

    Do you have a group of a type that doesn't usually print labels that needs labels printed? Rock has you covered. There is an advanced option that allows you to print labels for group types that don't typically print labels at check-in. To learn more about this feature, see the Appendix - Advanced Options section below.

    Rapid Attendance Entry

    The Rapid Attendance Entry block allows you to record the attendance of a lot of people quickly. This could come in handy for certain situations, such as checking a lot of people in for a worship service and wanting to do so as fast as possible. The Rapid Attendance Block makes this task simple. Let's look at how it works.

    Rapid Attendance Entry Screen
    Rapid Attendance Entry

    The Rapid Attendance Entry screen is located at People > Rapid Attendance Entry. You begin the Rapid Attendance Entry process by selecting the group you want to record attendance for. The group's settings and attributes will determine which options will be available on the screen.

    Rapid Attendance Entry List
    Rapid Attendance Entry List

    When you choose a group, the locations associated with the group are displayed in a drop-down. If the group has only one location, it will be selected by default. When you select a location, any service times available for that location are displayed. (Again, if there's only one, it will be selected by default.) Select the attendance date from the calendar, or enter it manually into the Attendance Date field.

    OK, now comes the fun part.

    Begin by entering an attendee name in the Attendee field. When you click Save, Rock displays a confirmation message, adds the person to the Current Attendance count, and readies the Attendee field for the next entry. Repeat the process by entering the next person, and the next, and the next... You can see how this block can help you record the attendance for a lot of people very quickly.

    You can select the Show Current Attendees checkbox to display a list of the people already entered. Having this option turned on may slow down the entry process, though. For very large gatherings, it may be best to leave the box unchecked.

    If you enter a person whose attendance status is Inactive, Rock will display a warning message as well as an Activate & Save button, which allows you to re-activate the person and record their attendance.

    Additional Check-In Options

    While Rock ships with the check-in configurations we’ve found to be best practice for most organizations, there may be times when you need a different check-in procedure, such as checking in groups by birthdates or manually checking individuals out of events. Let’s look at the additional check-in options available.

    Configuring by Birthdate

    Configuring check-in by age range means less work for you when it comes to managing groups. Students simply move up into the next age group or grade without you having to update group names. There may be situations, though, where you want to check in groups by birthdate range, such as when you want to keep a group of children together as they get older. While this configuration allows groups to move together, it will require the group names to be continually updated as the grade level of the group changes.

    Birthdate Range
    Check-in Birthdate Range

    To configure check-in groups by birthdate range, follow these steps:

    1. Go to Admin Tools > Check-in > Check-in Configuration
    2. Select the configuration you want to modify.
    3. In the Areas and Groups section, click the Area of the group you want to modify. Rock displays the check-in options for that area.
    4. From the Inherit from dropdown menu, select either Check in by Age or Check in by Grade. Either option will display the birthdate range option in the group.
    5. Click Save.
    6. In the Areas and Groups section, click the group you’re modifying. The birthdate range option will now be displayed in the Check-In section.
    7. Select the beginning and ending birthdates from the calendars in each field to set the range.
    8. Click Save.

    Manual Check-Out

    Out of the box, Rock automatically “checks out” individuals when an event end time has passed. However, you can configure Rock to allow individuals to manually check out, and set it up to print a check-out label.

    Allow Checkout
    Allow Checkout

    To configure manual check-out, follow these steps:

    1. Go to Admin Tools > Check-in > Check-in Configuration
    2. Select the configuration you want to modify.
    3. In the General Settings section, check Allow Checkout.
    4. Click Save.

    Check-Out Labels
    Print Check-out Label

    To print a label at check-out, follow these steps:

    1. Go to Admin Tools > Check-in > Check-in Labels
    2. Click to create a new check-in label, or select an existing label to modify from the File List.
    3. Select Check-Out in the Print for Each dropdown menu.
    4. Click Save.

    Auto Check-In

    Automatic check-in is an option that works with family check-in and creates a speedier check-in process. With this configuration, when a family checks in, Rock pulls information from their previous check-in based on a certain number of days back. For example, if you have a weekly service, you can set up auto check-in to search a family check-in record ten days back and pull the same options as their check-in for the previous week. This saves them time when checking in. If there is no check-in record within the designated number of days, Rock automatically selects the first eligible option for the family based on age, grade and room availability.

    Auto Check-In
    Auto Check-In

    To set up auto check-in, follow these steps:

    1. Go to Admin Tools > Check-in > Check-in Configuration
    2. Select the check-in you want to modify.
    3. Click Edit.
    4. In the Check-in Type field, select Family.
    5. In the Auto Select Days Back field in the General Settings section, type in the number of days back you want Rock to search.
    6. Click Save.

    Barcode Check-In

    You can use barcode scanners in addition to your standard check-in methods as long as the barcode scanner you use supports keyboard wedge. You don't need to direct Rock to search for barcodes, though. Once installed, the scanner waits at the Welcome screen, ready to check people in by barcode key. You do, however, need to match up families with barcodes in Rock, but this process is easy. See the steps below. When a family's barcode is scanned, Rock automatically identifies that family and checks them in. This system can be used for check-out as well.

    Check-In Identifiers
    Check-in Identifier Field

    To associate barcodes with families, follow these steps:

    1. Go to a person’s profile page.
    2. Click the edit icon in the person’s family section.
    3. Click to add a Check-in Identifier in the Family Attributes section.
    4. Click in the Check-in Identifier field to set its focus.
    5. Scan the barcode using the barcode reader. The barcode number will be captured in the Check-in Identifier field.

    Barcodes and the Welcome Screen

    Barcodes can be scanned at the Welcome screen. One way to make this option clear to members approaching a check-in kiosk is to modify the button on the Welcome screen to indicate barcode scanning is an option. For example, you could customize the button to read "Scan or Search by Name". To customize the button on the Welcome screen, locate the Welcome page in CMS Configuration > Pages. Click the button to view the page's block properties, then change the text in the Check-in Button Text field to whatever you'd like the button to say. Click Saveto save your changes.

    RFID Check-In

    You can also use RFID readers during check-in. Setting up RFID is the same process as setting up a barcode; you’re just using a different input type. To work with Rock, your RFID reader must support keyboard wedge. If your device doesn’t support keyboard wedge, the free Smartlux 232 Key utility can be used to emulate this functionality. Once the RFID is associated with a family, there is no need for further configuration. 232 Key captures information from whichever screen has focus. For example, a member can scan their RFID card from the welcome screen, and Rock will take them through the check-in process.

    Check-In Titles

    You can now customize the titles on your check-in screens to fit with your organization branding. This is an advanced setting in the Page Map configuration.

    Check-In Titles
    Check-in Titles

    To create unique check-in titles, follow these steps:

    1. Go to Admin Tools > CMS Settings > Page Map
    2. Drill down in the navigation tree to the page you want to modify.
    3. Click Edit.
    4. Type the custom title in the Page Title field. You can also specify a title for internal use in the Internal Name field, and a browser title in the Browser Title field.
    5. Click Save.

    Appendix - Advanced Options

    This chapter is intended only for those who need to configure some of the advanced options that are not enabled out-of-the-box in Rock.

    Prevent Duplicate Check-in

    By default, when you enable the Prevent Duplicate Check-in option for a check-in Area, it affects all groups under that area. If you find yourself in a situation where you really only wanted one specific group type to be affected, don't check this option under the check-in area. Instead you can add an Boolean attribute with a key of "PreventDuplicateCheckin" to the group type under Admin Tools > General Settings > Group Types. You can even add it to a group type that is inherited by other group types.

    The underlying Filter By Previous Checkin workflow action used by the check-in system always checks for this specific attribute and value if the Prevent Duplicate Check-in option is not already checked. The end result is that you can control which check-in areas do not allow re-checking-in instead of using the "all or nothing" option within Check-in Configuration.

    An example of this might be you wanting to prevent duplicate check-in for kids/youth (to prevent label reprinting shenanigans), but allowing it for Classes/Events where duplicate check-in is great way to reprint a name tag for an adult if the printer ate it or similar.

    Label Field Type in Group Attributes

    The Label field type is an advanced option for group attributes that you may find helpful in specific situations. For example, you could run into a scenario where you have a group that needs labels printed, but is of a group type that doesn't print labels. Rather than create a new group type, you can create a group attribute with the field type Label that the groups of that type can use. If a group selects a Label value, Rock will print that label at check-in.

    To add the Label attribute, go to the Group Attributes section of the group type's detail screen, and click to add a new attribute. For the Field Type, select "Label" and click Save. Now that the group attribute is available, individual groups can choose the type of label they want printed in the Edit screen of the Group Viewer.

    Rock checks for this attribute value on both groups and people, so you could use this functionality for other scenarios as well. Say a person is banned from your campus. You could create a Label person attribute with the value of "banned", then update the person's records with this label. A "banned" label would then print anytime the person checked in to any group, location or schedule.