How many hours do you spend each month on billing and payment processing? If you still perform a largely manual process, you are spending time that is better used operating and marketing your business.
Manual invoicing and payment processing requires you to not only print and mail invoices -- you must keep track of all additional fees and penalties as well as monitor accounts receivable to ensure payment has been made. You must spend time processing payment, making trips to the bank, and handling delinquent accounts. In the meantime, you have data entry to perform for the next billing cycle.
Introduce efficiency into your billing process
The biggest time-saver software provides is automation of simple, repetitive tasks. Childcare management software created for the industry contains all features that make billing fast and simple.
- Generate invoices on a predefined schedule.
- Automatically add additional fees such as late pick-up and late payment penalties to individual accounts.
- Automatically apply discounts and co-payments.
- Send invoices to parents in a batch email that contains all transactions for each account.
You are not restricted to creating invoices in a single batch or on a fixed schedule — you can invoice on a variable schedule, or create ad-hoc invoices for a one-time charge. If you offer Mommy’s Day Out on a pay-as-you-go option, your clients can pay as they pick-up without holding up the line, or you can email the invoice for payment later.
When the billing process is automatic, you can bill hourly, daily, weekly, or monthly without creating a mountain of work. If you undergo an audit, all your financial records will be available in one place, easily accessed for reporting.
Speed up accounts receivable
Under a manual process, someone must keep track of incoming payments daily and ensure all clients have paid by the payment date. If payments are missing, staff time is taken up with sending reminders and adding late fees for each account. And if the check bounces, more time is needed to take care of the paperwork and fees related to insufficient funds.
Delays in payment processing create stress and cashflow problems.
Childcare management software allows you to accept and process multiple types of payments without additional administration on your part.
- Accept credit or debit card payments in person or online.
- Set up payments directly from the client’s bank account.
- Electronically process checks without traveling to the bank.
- Accept and process split fees from divorced parents or co-payments from government agencies without additional hassle.
The faster you can turn around payment processing, the quicker the money goes into your bank account, ready to be used.
Access your software anytime, anywhere
Cloud-based child software provides several advantages that installed or “on-premise” software does not. You enjoy the convenience of accessing your records and administering your financial interests anytime you like. There is no need to visit your facility to use a workstation -- you can work from your home office or on the go.
Childcare management SaaS solutions only require you to have access to a web browser from any device from a PC to a smartphone.
Enhanced client relationships
Developing and maintaining your relationship with your clients is the most important part of your business. Today’s parents expect to be able to pay electronically, be notified by text, and register online. It's what they do with other vendors, and it is what they expect to be able to do with your services.
Today’s clients also do not have the time or patience for mistakes or delays in communications. With the right childcare management solution, you can communicate and provide as much digital activity as you and your clients are comfortable with.
- Allow online registration and enrollment including the ability to upload vaccination records and other required documents.
- Provide calendar-based enrollment and online enrollment in additional activities.
- Accept online payment through credit or debit cards, or allow parents to set up bank draft payments.
- Send notifications via text message, email, or across the parent portal.
- Post pictures of children’s activities to the parent portal.
Parents who place their children in daycare and preschool want to know what their kids are doing, and they like to know you can contact them immediately when needed. If you make registration, enrollment, and payment as convenient and easy as possible, you will attract more clients and grow your business.
One other thing that you gain is a marketing outlet. All notifications, invoices, email, and other electronic communications can be used to promote your brand identity. Each report and statement can be designed with your business logo, colors, and any other identifying or promotional element you want to make.
Automating processes generates cost savings. What is your time and your staff’s time worth? How much do you spend paying yourself or someone else to perform data entry, financial management, and record-keeping? How long does it take to gather records for various purposes?
Childcare management software eliminates or shortens the duration of all of these tasks.
When tax time comes, as it always does, parents can retrieve their tax statements from the parent portal and you can gather all your business tax documentation quickly and easily. Paying quarterly estimated taxes and business taxes becomes a much smaller burden when all the records are within easy reach, and you can pull reports with all the information in one place.
With childcare management software you are environmentally friendly, too.
- You save paper and ink by not printing attendance sheets for each day or every child.
- You save paper and ink by not printing invoices, notifications, and letters.
- You reduce your carbon footprint and save gas because you make fewer trips to the bank and post office.
- Faster check in and check out reduces the idling time for cars when parents are dropping off or picking up.
While not strictly cost savings, reducing the turn-around time for payment processing, accepting faster modes of payment, and automating the late collection and fee process, the money comes into your account on a reliable basis, smoothing out your cash flow.
Companies that provide cloud-based services live and die by their ability to provide security and disaster recovery. It is more than likely your data is more secure in a cloud company’s data server than on your computer or laptop at the office.
You can offer this assurance to parents who provide you with bank account numbers, credit cards, and personal information about their family.
Childcare management software has the advantage over manual practices in nearly all areas. Streamlining your business functions not only creates more time to spend with your families and children, but it also helps you grow your business and facilitate cash flow and repetitive administrative tasks.