For any school, the right school management system can transform productivity, communication, and student management.  However, success isn’t just about choosing the right system; it’s about avoiding the pitfalls that come from poor implementation.  The costs of poor school management system adoption are two-fold: underutilised investments and unmet objectives. It can seriously undermine a school’s growth strategy if you don’t invest time in adapting workflows and ensuring every team member knows how to get the best from it.  Choosing the right software for school management is key, so here’s a reminder of what to look for:

Rich data at its heart

Think about the school management system as your single source of truth for everything that’s going on in your school. It needs to be capable of capturing all the data on students, from medical information and family relationships to well-being and learning progress. For example, Synergetic creates a relational database which handles complex family structures, as well as historical, current and future data.  Everyone should be referring to it, which means team members should be able to access this data quickly and easily as soon as they need it. 

Seamless connection 

To give you that single source of truth, the school management system should have the ability to connect to everyone and all other systems. If your systems don’t talk to each other, you cannot rely on the data you’re accessing to be accurate and up to date. 

Deep insights

Choose a system that can provide deep insights into the school performance by student, class, year, and whole of the school. But these insights are only valuable if you can access them easily. That’s why Synergetic’s fully integrated business intelligence tool, Power BI, provides an extensive range of visual, interactive dashboards. You can interact with reports, look for trends and see vital information at a glance, from prospective student demographics to fundraising campaigns, and more. 

3 actions for implementation success

  1. Be committed to clean, accurate data

Accurate data is the foundation of any system, and a school management system is only as good as the data put in it. That’s why it is essential to be committed to the most accurate data.  Take a whole-school approach to data cleansing, which means ensuring that every piece of data you store, whether medical records or financial information, has a plan for keeping it up to date. Help avoid errors and reduce inconsistencies by creating a data entry policy that provides staff with guidance on what they should and should not be doing.    
  1. Adapt processes 

To get the most from the school management system, don’t simply shift your existing processes onto the system. Take the opportunity to review and adapt processes to automate repetitive tasks and increase efficiency.  At the same time, the system you choose needs to have the ability to flex with your school’s needs, otherwise friction will cause inefficiencies, and schoolwide adoption will be slow. It’s a two-way street.  
  1. Focus on adoption

Truly successful implementation is about adoption. You can implement a school management system, but change and innovation only come when your team embraces it, wraps it into their workflow, and gets the best value from it. 

This means focusing on training. Ensure staff know how to properly leverage the features of a new system in their daily work life.  At Education Horizons, we offer a wide range of consulting and training services for our systems, including free webinars, courses and events.  Talk to our team to see how we can support you in choosing the right school management system and ensure implementation success. Call us on +61 1800 498 642 or +44 193 540 3020 or email