26th May 2020
Iain Finlayson, Managing Director, Library and Education Solutions
Software features to help make operations easier
There are so many things to think about when you are involved in running a school. Choosing a school management software (SMS) might not always be top of the list, especially when the sector is subject to much disruption. And rightly so but having a system which enables everyone within the school to easily share information, simplify processes and minimise the need for multiple processes can certainly make running a school a little easier.
In order to help you decide what’s important from a school management system for your school, here are key features to look out for.
- All core data in one place
Switching between systems to find the information you need is guaranteed to make your life harder than it has to be. Solutions with comprehensive student information on a single profile page – including behaviour, attendance, medical, group memberships, detentions, suspensions, awards, and historical student information – provide you with quick access to a single source of truth.
- Integration with other tools
A flexible school management solution can improve efficiencies and cater for niche requirements by reliably integrating with other best-of-breed platforms and tools in use in your school. Open systems make it easy to connect finance and billing, community portals, teaching toolkits, timetabling modules, learning management services and business intelligence.
- A system you can make your own
The best software doesn’t just enable you to do a job, it makes doing the job a little nicer too. The same is true in school management systems. Look for simple interfaces with options to tailor for your school, school-specific reports, configurable data entry forms, and easy to manage lists to help turn data entry and report production from grind to grin.
- Reminders and notifications to keep you on track
The ability to set your own reminders and notifications can help you prioritise tasks and ensure nothing gets missed. The best school management solutions will enable you to create alerts aligned to the targets your school cares most about, such as student performance, achievement, and well-being.
- Mobility for on-the-go productivity
Mobile solutions provide essential information at your fingertips to complete jobs, whether you are a teacher or work in school administration. This includes taking real-time attendance while on school trips, accessing class details, raising purchase requisitions or managing teacher covers for the following day. Enabling you to work from anywhere doesn’t mean you should work from everywhere, but it can save you from staying late in the office or classroom.
- Automation to streamline routine tasks
There are whole host of routine tasks that can be automated so you can concentrate on more important activities. School finance systems can help by automatically generating invoices and discounts, auto-reconciling your bank statements and generating payment cycles and online payments for parents. School administrators should have the ability to quickly initiate bulk communications around the school community, follow up on student absences, promote a simple enquiry into an application for enrolment and much more.
- Helping the school run a successful business
Nobody would argue that the welfare and care of students is every school’s top priority. However, a school is also a business striving to provide excellent service within finite financial resources. A good school management solution not only enables a school to track and manage forecasts and budgets, report accurately to boards and governing bodies. It also provides tools to assist with marketing activities, such as tracking and analysing of enquiries and managing communication with prospective parents.
As a cloud leader, we help schools improve, modernise and ultimately transform. Our education solutions are built for Australian independent schools, helping manage the increasingly complex business of running a school. To learn more about how Civica is helping schools or to speak to one of our team about how the right school management solution could help you with the business of running your school, please get in touch.