Tip Sheets

Changing Small School Management Systems

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800.443.9441 | solutions@blackbaud.com | www.blackbaud.com June 2019 1 The rapid rise of various school and education management technology offerings has led many K–12 schools into a wall of issues trying to connect disjointed systems. Multiple logins, complicated interfaces, disconnected databases, and out-of-sync information are a few of the reasons that The Girls Preparatory School (GPS) switched to Blackbaud's education management solutions. In a webinar outlining the school's transition, Director of IT Daniel Millbank and Data Operations Manager Melanie Northcutt discuss why GPS needed an integrated solution, and they highlight the following five strategies to successfully implement a new cloud software system. 1 Know what your school actually needs. There are two approaches to creating a school management system: best of breed and integrated. A best-of-breed system looks to utilize the most elaborate solution available for each office or discipline. While this approach offers each department more functionality, it can also lead to inconsistent data across the various school offices, higher operational costs, and multiple credential verifications. It's important for your school to fully understand the challenges it is trying to solve with a new system. Is a system comprised of independent best-of-breed solutions actually better when you weigh the pros versus the cons? Will your school fully utilize the additional features that contribute to the increased cost of best-of-breed solutions? GPS reviewed these scenarios and decided that the school was best served by an integrated system from Blackbaud that prioritized information availability and data flow throughout the various solutions and the school's offices with lower operational costs. 2 Prioritize and organize for discovery. For many schools, the discovery process for evaluating school management software systems can take anywhere from a few months to a couple of years. It can be a daunting process that TIP SHEET 5 Strategies for Changing School Management Systems

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