Principals Today #117

Page 7

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Less stress, more donations with online payments Raumati Beach School on Wellington’s Kapiti Coast has 688 students on the roll between Year 1 and Year 8. Up until last year, this generated large volumes of traffic through the office. Admin staff were working later and longer, becoming less satisfied with the amount they could achieve in a working day, according to finance manager, Jackie Corbett. At the time, the school accepted payments through EFTPOS, internet banking and cash. Some families also used automatic payments and credit on accounts which had to be journaled, producing a lot of manual reconciliation and double handling. In response to the demands on office staff, Jackie started to investigate the online payments system, Kindo. “I liked the fact that Kindo can handle small regular deposits, creating a fund for parents to allocate as needs arise. This gave our parents with APs an alternative that worked better for us,” Jackie says. “Kindo also offered credit card options at no cost to the school.” By week two of term one 2017, Kindo was in place. It immediately became easier for parents to manage their own payments. “Families could access their Kindo accounts and see exactly what they needed to pay and what they had already paid for.”

Jackie attributes an upturn in donation payments to the new system. “Last year we found that donations started to trickle in all the time – rather than once a term when we sent out statements. I think this is because parents are reminded about payments owed every time they login to Kindo. We’ve received more funds as a result.” To encourage parents to use Kindo, Raumati School took all forms and registrations online without offering a paper alternative (although parents could still pay outside the system). Less than 12 months later, over 80 percent of the school community was using Kindo. “There’s always some resistance to change,” commented Jackie. “But our staff and parents love the system now.” Jackie and her team are finding it easier to manage events requiring multiple small payments – like sausage sizzles. “Getting parents to pay online has made fundraisers so much easier. We don’t have to deal with $600-$700 in two-dollar coins. I just run off a list and hand it to the organiser.”

Raumati Beach School finance manager, Jackie Corbett with finance assistant, Shell Finderup

into excel. We just emailed her the spreadsheet and off she went.”

Kindo has also cut down admin time for teachers. Processing touch rugby registrations and creating teams each season used to take a teacher out of the classroom for two to three days.

Stress levels in the office have reduced because staff can now complete work without taking it home, said Jackie.

“This year our touch co-ordinator only needed a couple of half days to sort out teams because registrations were online; she didn’t need to type up information from paper forms

“Personally, Kindo saves me around an hour and a half every day during busy weeks. I knew Kindo had the potential to be good for us – and that’s become a reality. The system is easy to set up and it works for everyone.”    Term 1, 2018 | 7