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Childcare Center Star Ratings How Having No Website Or A Basic Website Can Take Away From The Credibility A Center's Star Rating 
By Kimberly Newman, Customer Success Leader @enrollsmartAs we have been helping customers in states that have star ratings and star-rated licenses for their childcare centers, we've noticed that many of these centers do not have a website at all or have an outdated site.
However, in an informal survey of parents seeking childcare arrangements, one of the first things that a parent looks at from a center's Google Listing or Facebook page is whether or not the center not only has a website but, a professional website.
It seems that design equals credibility is the feedback that we have received so often when speaking with parents. One parent commented: 
"If a business a cheap looking website or doesn't have one at all, it really makes me wonder about them because I want to know more about their services before I call them, and I want to do a…
Owner Talk:  Why a Professional Website Was Important For My Centerby Jim Shields @enrollsmartThis blog post covers the end of a brief phone conversation with Jen Kelly, Owner of First Step Academy in Independence, MO as to why a getting a professional website was important for her childcare center. Jen is an Enrollsmart client.
Jim Shields:  So Jen, tell me why you decided to get a professional website for your center?

Jen: Well, the truth is that it makes my business more credible.  When people search for childcare in my area using Google or Facebook, it looks much more professional if they are able to visit my website rather than just call me. Plus, with the online services such as payments and paperless enrollment my website lets me offer, I make things easier for myself. Not to mention all the money I'm saving.

Jim Shields: Was your website expensive? 

Jen:  Yes, the original site was expensive but, truthfully, you guys are offering so much more for just $39 a month.  Let's …
Our Paper Records Were Potentially Toxic and Weighed Nearly 2,500 Poundsby Jim Shields @enrollsmart
In many states, childcare providers are required to maintain child admission records and other child enrollment documents for 3-7 years after a child has left the provider's facility.  I'm not sure about other centers, but 5 years worth of records for the centers we operated took up a lot of space and they were very heavy.   I'm sure that most center owners/directors can attest to how challenging it can be to maintain child files in file cabinets and to keep active files separated from the files of children who have left the center.  However, what many centers do not realize is the health and financial effects extent of maintaining paper enrollment records at their facility.Before we decided to make our enrollment process paperless, we had a significant number of paper child enrollment files maintained on site.  I noticed that when we created our paperless enrollment process,…
Your Parent-Provider Contract: How an Interactive Website from Enrollsmart Can Help You Enforce It  By Kimberly Newman, Customer Success Leader @enrollsmartRecently, one of our customers had us add his center's Parent-Provider contract to the electronic state forms that we built into his website and, he told us the story why.First, let me explain how our websites are different: We have a library of State-by-State e-Forms that we build into each of our customers' websites and, our e-Forms capture actual signatures and create data files that replace paper files. An electronic version of our e-Forms is delivered to the center Owner/Director each time one is completed. Each form is and its data is saved to the cloud.What this means is that each of the child admission, infant/toddler feeding/care plan, CACFP IEF and, other forms that we include on our customers' websites have every field required for their specific state AND the form requires parents/guardians to actually sign w…
Why An Interactive Website And Online Registration Process Were Essential To Our Center's Disaster Readinessby Jim Shields @enrollsmart
About a decade ago, I noticed many States starting to require childcare centers to create a disaster plan.  During that time, we were still in the business of operating centers and, we created our disaster plan and posted it as required.  By operating in the Midwest, tornados were a recurring threat and, the catastrophic EF5 tornado that struck Joplin, MO in 2011 sent shockwaves through us because there were several notable destructions of childcare centers during the disaster.We began reviewing our disaster plan to make sure that it addressed some of the most critical issues to deal with in a disaster when it comes to childcare centers: Survivability, Accountability and Family Reuniting. Because we had developed an online registration process with e-Forms, we had contact information for emergency contacts as well as identifying child photos access…
3 Reasons Why An Interactive Website Is A Critical Tool In  Controlling Childcare Center Costsby Kimberly Newman @enrollsmart
For the past few weeks, we've been in the field working with Directors and Owners. The focus of our time in the field has been spent on re-affirming the pain points as well as the opportunities that exist for childcare centers when it comes to technology.During one visit, we spoke with a center owner who had just signed up for a childcare center management system and, they really didn't under the difference between a website and, an administration system.  So, we spent some time explaining the difference.We also discussed how our interactive websites can be linked to any web-based childcare administration system and, how our web platform is customer facing and that childcare administration systems are management facing and can, often times, lead to more work. Here are 3 core benefits that a website should provide a childcare center when it comes to cont…
The Car Seat Problem at Medium-Sized and Small Childcare Centers by Jim Shields @enrollsmart
In medium-sized and small childcare centers, parents are transporting their children back and forth from home in a variety of ways.  We witnessed it over the years.  For example, a parent and his children may ride the bus to the childcare center to drop off in the morning but, an aunt may be picking the children up from the center by car that evening.  In my experience, even when parents ride the bus or get a ride to pick up or drop off their children, they often leave a car seat so that another person can transport their children (relative, spouse, friend).Car seats are always a good thing for safe transportation. Storing them at your center may be necessary to support your families, however, it's not always such an easy thing and, here's why:Pests - We (literally) had to halt service to a customer once because everything they brought from home was infested with insects; even the box …