The latest news, views & reviews for Australia's child care industry July 9, 2013
child care industry news
Welcome, how well does your CCMS software package work? Share your experiences and opinions in this month's newsletter plus our guide on complaints management.
Which CCMS software is best?

ccms softwareWith the recent announcement that C&K, one of Queensland's largest child care providers is moving all its child care, kindergarten and family day care services across to the Kidsoft child care management software offered by NumeroPro, it prompted the question how well are the software programs serving early childhood education and care services and which are the best?

C&K will migrate all its services to the Kidsoft platform over the next 18 months and chief financial officer Alex Allen said the Kidsoft software was chosen because it is intuitive and forward thinking.

"We see an opportunity to streamline administration performed by staff and the Kidsoft solution supports this vision. It also delivers an online wait listing solution and portal for parents and guardians to access information when and where they want it," he said.

As you know all CCB approved child care services are required to operate under the CCMS. The CCMS is not in itself a software program it is simply the system under which services provide information to DEEWR on what care has been provided, to which children and when.

Child care services must independently choose a software program which helps them meet their reporting requirements under the CCMS. The DEEWR website lists 23 approved CCMS suppliers and child care services are required to research their options and select the provider which best suits their needs. For many services this may not be as easy as it sounds.

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Complaints management
How to deal with parent complaints

healthy eatingDisagreements are an inevitable part of running any kind of service and when that service involves people's children you can be guaranteed misunderstandings and conflicts will occur. Learning how to quickly and effectively deal with parent complaints is an important part of running a successful child care service and the tips below will hopefully help you succeed:

Good communication is vital and should begin before a child is even enrolled in your service. Offering parents a written contract which outlines your service's terms and conditions will give you the opportunity to talk everything through with the parents and for them to ask questions. Make sure the document is easy to read and understand so that parents can't use 'fine print' as an excuse for not knowing something.

Taking the time to talk to parents during pick ups and drop offs will hopefully give you an opportunity to work through any small issues which arise. However it is important to be sensitive to parents and if you feel as though something is up then take the time to have a chat in a quiet corner.

Serious problems should be discussed when both parties have the time to share their views without other people around. It may be necessary to arrange a meeting at a later date to ensure the environment is conducive to a mutually agreeable outcome. Make sure you make the suggestion politely: 'I can see you are upset and we need to talk about this. It's not a good time right now but why don't I call you tonight or let's make a time later in the week to discuss this problem'.

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