When I first started at our childcare center, we were doing everything on paper, and this quickly became very overwhelming. At that point, I decided it was time to start looking for child care software.
After some research, I found Sandbox, and it completely changed how we ran our business. It allowed us not only maintain the kids that we already had but made it possible for us to grow.
If you are already in the midst of the hunt for child care software, then you probably already know that there are a lot of software systems to choose from. You may be wondering, "Why Sandbox?"!
Well, today I am going to share with you seven reasons why I and many others choose Sandbox Software as their child care management system.
When considering what kind of software would be the best fit for your childcare center or preschool program, the first thing to consider is how accessible it is. Childcare directors and leaders are swamped and often need to work outside of regular hours (even on the weekends).
For me, this was the number one consideration when choosing a childcare software program. What I love most about Sandbox is that it's fully web-based. That means you have access to the software anywhere and at any time.
The other reason why web-based was so crucial to our center was for our After School Program. We wanted to make sure that our van drivers, who were picking school-age students from the local elementary schools, could access attendance.
Having all of our attendance lists with projections and being able to mark our children as attended on the go was HUGE.
The enrollment process for a new child entering into a licensed program can be so time-consuming. This is due to all the licensing forms each center is required to have.
When considering which software to use, I was committed to making this enrollment process easier.
What I love about Sandbox is that it makes Enrollment super easy. With a custom online registration feature, Sandbox allows parents to request registration online. You are then able to review and approve the submitted forms, which will then create the child profile without any manual data entry necessary.
Depending on your licensing requirements, tracking attendance is also something that can be tricky and stressful for childcare centers.
Many centers are still using paper sign-in/out sheets or clunky systems. When I saw how easy Sandbox made attendance tracking, it was like a weight off my shoulders.
First, you have the Timeclock, a simple keypad that allows parents to sign their children in and out securely with their passcode. This attendance information is then pushed directly into Sandbox.
Next, you have the Teacher App with an attendance section where you can one tap to sign children in/out and perform group sign-in/out actions. This section also enables staff to get a quick glance at attendance numbers to help calculate ratios.
Finally, you can view all this information in the Attendance section of your Sandbox account, where you can make any necessary updates and adjustments.
We also provide multiple attendance reports that you can run and export at any time with this attendance data. It's time to go paperless!
As a child care center director, you or team members may spend hours trying to keep track of staff that is due for CPR or other training requirements.
I can not even begin to count the number of hours I have personally spent flipping through paper forms or a personally designed excel spreadsheet, trying to sort staff tracking items.
Sandbox software does all the hard work for you here. In the staff profile, you have a custom staff tracking section where you can add the categories and items you are required to track. Simply set a due date for the items, and Sandbox will remind you on the homepage 30 days before it comes due.
To top it all off, you are then able to easily dismiss, remind yourself later or send off a quick email reminder to the staff. It's pure magic, I tell ya! (PS. Custom child reminders are also available for the children)
Having never been a numbers person, I was so glad that our center had a bookkeeper who managed the budget and finances. The one thing I did do, was the staff payroll.
When looking for software, this was not even a feature I was expecting to see included. I was counting on having to continue tracking staff hours on paper forms and entering it into excel.
However, I was amazed to find out that Sandbox also allows you to track staff hours through the Timeclock. In the staff section, you can then review and edit staff hours if necessary, and then you have reports which are exportable with the totals you need for payroll.
If there is one section of Sandbox that may be considered 'Bulky', it would be the reports section. However, it is bulky in a good way, with over 100 reports at your fingertips.
After a significant amount of research and listening to the feedback of our customers, Sandbox has built out these reports to help provide the information you need when you need it.
Now, don't be worried about having a massive list of reports that is hard to navigate. We understand that based on the type of program you offer and state requirements, you will not need all of the reports we provide.
That is why we give you the option to view the list of reports and only select the ones you need. These will then show in the dropdowns and hide the reports you won't be using. This is how they have made the reports section smooth!
Last, but certainly not least is our customer service. Over and over, I hear personally from our customers how helpful our support team is. From the moment you reach the website all the way through the evaluation process and especially as a customer, Sandbox works endlessly to provide an awesome experience.
What makes our support different is that our team is filled with people who invest time and effort to get to know our customers. I am amazed at how much these people know about each center and their different needs. This is a high-quality service at it's finest level.
If you are ready to be among the top-performing centers and grow your business, you have to stop doing things the hard way.
Sandbox is an easy all in one solution for your childcare business. Get started today - it's free!