Schools and trusts spend their days teaching the best minds of the future, yet for many, their school management information system (MIS) is stuck in the past.
Whether they are stuck with clunky legacy systems or are on the verge of being locked into three-year contracts, not migrating to the cloud can have serious consequences.
How will a past-its-sell-by-date MIS limit your school or trust?
- Cyber security concerns and on-premise service costs
- Difficult to work with and costs your staff time
- Clunky systems and manual data analysis
- Systems that do not talk to each other
Currently, a staggering 70% of school IT systems still run on solutions that are essentially still locked in a back office.
Staying desktop means educators can’t benefit from connected, real-time data, and often waste valuable resources hosting, managing and securing systems.
These old ways keep data out of the hands of the people who need it, creating huge admin burdens for staff who have to duplicate data entry across different systems.
So, what are the best ways to evaluate choosing a cloud-based MIS?
1) Adopt a simple change management mindset
It’s easy to feel you have to hire expensive consultants when switching. However, those who have made the move show it’s possible to be both pragmatic and cost-effective.
You can create collateral to support internal comms, building a champion group to evangelise about the change and provide learning opportunities for team members.
It’s also a great idea to have a clear comms plan.
Cloud-based MIS vendors are already starting to provide posters or tutorial-style videos which can also be used to celebrate successes and achievements during the transition, a great way to motivate stakeholders and alleviate fears of change.
2) Promote tech usage as a differentiator to staff
Teachers are drawn to the profession to inspire and teach students, not to do admin.
As the UK is facing the largest skills shortage for generations, employers are having to fight harder for every candidate.
If a teacher has used cloud technology before, they’ll be horrified to revert back to a desktop world.
The cloud is a great way to retain staff by reducing the hassle of the job.
Cloud-based systems offer messengers, planners and registrations, while voice-to-text dictation removes the pain of term-end reporting.
Live notifications also mean no more needless notes, errands or calls.
3) Supplier choice – look for technology and support
Choosing the right technology partner is key, so explore how their solution works in practice.
They should also connect data silos, providing a flow of information through the school and offer insight into what is going on.
Schools generate lots of information, and leaders need to have this information at hand.
In MATs, it is essential to get the planning right. Choose a technology partner capable of supporting you throughout, one with the resources, experience and scale to adapt, especially if requirements change or something doesn’t go exactly to plan.
4) Let your IT support provider do some of the heavy lifting
You don’t have to go on the journey on your own. Support units have deep expertise and can provide high-quality support.
Working with them allows schools and MATs to benefit from knowledge across the whole community. They have great skills and a wealth of user stories to draw on.
5) Remember, a three-year wait is three years too late
Next-generation, real-time, cloud-based MIS technology is already here, and if you are stuck in a three-year contract with your old provider, you are going to be left behind.
Choosing a smarter MIS such as IRIS Ed:gen offers a range of benefits.
Designed for state schools and ideal for trusts, primary and secondary education settings, it lets you harness the power of real-time data.
This smart school MIS boasts a cloud-based platform which gives you a centralised view of everything you need to know.
Accessible any time, anywhere – no longer limited to the back office. Give all staff real-time data at their fingertips and a host of unique, game-changing features.
Consider IRIS Ed:gen.
It’s smarter than your average MIS.
Find out more on the IRIS Ed:gen website.