Sticky Notes and Old Dusty Totes:

The Task Management Crisis in Childcare Centers


By Jim Shields, Enterprise Architect @enrollsmart

It's been quite a while since we've updated our blog. The fall was very busy with implementations, consultations, beta tests and more.  In the time since we last posted in this blog, here are some things we've learned about the inner workings of hundreds of childcare centers across America:

1. Task management methods in nearly all of the childcare centers we spoke with are still heavily dependent on paper and face-to-face communication.

2. For nearly all of the projects and tasked we were involved in at childcare centers, there was a significant lack of follow through in a timely manner simply because communication relied so heavily on paper and meetings. For example, we attended weekly staff meetings at a number of centers for which we are engaged in technology projects and, we tracked the progress of projects and duties assigned to various center staff and identified as critical; nearly all of which fell through the cracks or were not completed by center staff in a timely and effective manner.

3. Assigning detailed tasks and distributing work schedules was a major problem at nearly all of the childcare centers we encountered. This has become even more of an issue as governments have ramped up their digitization and systems. Tasks such as tracking whether or not staff has been fingerprinted, tracking whether professional education requirements have been met, following up on E-Verify and I-9 for new hires, and following up with parents who have missed/erred in their government-required electronic sign-in/out are all being becoming critical tasks that many governments have transitioned to electronic systems. 

4. Nearly 95% of childcare centers do not have a website and, if they do have a website, it is not interactive (does not do anything but provide basic information). However, schools and schools districts depend on their websites for online enrollment, payment of fees by parents, and much more. With so many states enacting "school district type" requirements for childcare centers and preschools, it is astonishing that so many centers do not have even a basic website. 

5. With the overall shortage of workers in the US and rising wages, it is critical that centers embrace technology to manage tasks more efficiently. Enrollsmart has a very user-friendly task management feature that is part of our core platform.

Jim Shields is Enterprise Architect at Enrollsmart.  Enrollsmart provides operational, financial and web technology to childcare centers. Enrollsmart was built based on more than 15 years of childcare center ownership.  

To learn more about Enrollsmart, visit our childcare center information page at https://www.enrollsmart.net

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