School apps for secondary schools to improve communication and reduce costs
As a school business manager, it’s your responsibility to reduce costs and ensure the school runs efficiently.
You want your school to be full to the brim to access the best funding possible, but how do you do that? Firstly, people need to know about your school, and you need current parents to be fully engaged from the get-go. So how do you tick all these boxes?
What if you stumbled upon a solution that helps you engage all parents and reduce current costs?
That’s what a school comms app can help you achieve. Read on to learn more.
How school apps improve communication for secondary schools
With a school communication app, the clue is in the name. Its sole aim is to help you improve communication — communication between school and parent and internally, too. Without a robust internal comms strategy, it becomes more challenging to deliver superior parental communication because not everyone is on the same page.
With that in mind, how can a school app support your comms strategy?
There’s a simple onboarding process
Just like with any new software, you need everyone using it to understand how to use it. Sounds obvious, but it’s something that can easily be overlooked. Using new software can be daunting — there’s so much to get your head around. But with our school app, you can onboard parents easily.
After we’ve got you all set up, simply send each parent a secure link via email or SMS, and they can sign up and log in using the details you provide them with. The app is free for them to download via Google Play or the App Store.
Onboarding is simple for staff, too. Here at Parentapps, we’re here to train all your staff members, so they’re able to confidently navigate the app and make use of all its features. Still got questions after the training? No problem. Our support team is here to help you whenever you or one of your parents has a question.
We’re here to make sure you get the most out of your dashboard, which includes opening your eyes to features you might not have been aware of before.
Ready to explore with a demo? Sign up here.
Our solution is cloud-based which means zero downtime
How does this help improve your communication? Because it’s always accessible. That means if a parent is wondering what your school term dates are at 2:00 AM, they can just hop onto the app and find the relevant information.
As the app is accessible 24/7, parents can use your app to answer questions themselves; it’s self-serve. This means you’re not getting bombarded with as many straightforward questions first thing Monday morning, and your parents feel in control.
Integrated parents evening and club bookings
Think back to a time before technology, when pupils had to approach each subject teacher and book in random (usually unevenly spaced) parents’ evening slots. With a school app, this archaic and time-wasting process is in the past.
Instead, parents can access an integrated parents’ evening booking form. Easily booking slots when each teacher is free. And there’s no chance of losing track of when each appointment is; parents can continue to refer back to the app whenever they need to.
Encourage parents to book their after school clubs through your app, too. This seamless online app makes life that little bit easier and smoother for both parents and teachers.
Message receipts mean better-targeted communication
Instead of re-sending emails and texts to every parent, you can target just those who haven’t read or responded to your message. This means you don’t keep sending the same message to parents who have already responded and ramp up the engagement with parents who slip through the communication cracks.
Being able to view when they’ve read or just received your message means you can get a clearer picture of which parents aren’t as active or engaged as much with your school. From here, you can pinpoint these parents and talk to them in person when they pick up their children or come in for parents’ evening appointments—perhaps using this time to find out why they’re not taking advantage of the app or show them how to use it if they’re struggling.
How school apps reduce costs for secondary schools
There are many advantages of a school communication app, and improving your communication with parents is important, but what about the cost savings it can help you make?
If you’re looking to reduce your school’s costs while embracing technology, a school comms app could be for you.
So, what are these cost-saving benefits? And how can they save your school money? Let’s take a look.
Yes, we’re mentioning this point again because being cloud-based helps improve communication and reduce costs. The costs of printing paper and wasted time is evident with manual, traditional processes like letters and forms.
There is a lot of paper used in UK schools on a daily basis, and cloud-based software can help reduce this. With a school comms app, you can also boost your school’s green credentials — making your journey towards a paperless future even easier.
A common question we get when we mention it’s cloud-based is — is my data secure? And the answer is yes; all data is securely stored. Parents have to be invited to join the app, and they require login credentials to access all information on the app.
The app is fully GDPR compliant, it’s easy to use, and staff can access information securely wherever they are — at home or off-site. The ability to communicate instantly with parents is at your fingertips — what’s not to like?
Saves administration time
Relying on students passing paper-based communication to their parents, then relying on parents communicating back, often via their children, can be an inefficient and often ineffective process.
Not only do the school letters find their way to the bottom of the school bag (or the bin!), this process leads to an increased need for admin support. For example, racking up hours manually following up with parents and re-printing letters — which is time that could be put to better use.
Parents no longer feel out of the loop with a school communication app, and admin time will be dramatically reduced. There will be no more time wasted communication with parents — you’ll now be able to send out free messages directly to parents and re-send to those who haven’t yet responded.
You can say goodbye to collecting cash payments from parents via pupils because they can make payments directly through the app. It’s about meeting those parental expectations and making their life easier.
All these time-saving benefits will directly impact your bottom line because your admin team can focus on more worthwhile tasks such as raising the school’s profile to attract prospective parents.
Removes the need for expensive text messaging services
We know your school finances are stretched thinly as it is, so if you could find a cheaper alternative to your current text messaging service, wouldn’t you want to learn more?
Parentapps provide your school with an all-in-one app, which negates the need for your existing text platform, allowing your school to send out free text messages to all parents at the click of a button.
But what about if certain parents don’t have access to a smartphone or choose not to download the app? Don’t worry; you can still message them through the app dashboard via SMS. This means no one is uncontactable.
It’s a cheaper, more straightforward way to deliver mass personalised communication.
We hope this blog post has shed some light on how school apps can transform your secondary school communication while reducing costs.
After reading this blog post, if you’re looking for further evidence that your school can save some pennies with a school app, check out our free savings calculator and see how much your school could be saving.
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