Across Canada, dedicated public servants give their time and expertise to serve on school boards. As anyone familiar with our educational system can tell you, every school has its own needs and requirements. It’s up to school boards to make important decisions that impact faculty and staff, parents and students – keeping cost-effectiveness, efficiency, and relevance in mind at all times. In our technology-based world, choosing the right software for a school is one of the most important tasks put before a school board.
Unfortunately, all too often, boards aren’t well-versed in the nuances of software and opt for solutions that appear cost-effective at face value. Off-the-shelf software, as many have learned, comes with multiple hidden problems that could have been avoided, had a consultation with Ricoh’s education professionals been scheduled. Class room optimization, critical technical support, and down-the-line system adjustments are but a few of the options afforded to school boards who choose Ricoh for their technology needs.
“What Seemed Inexpensive Is Now Costing Us Money.”
We can’t tell you how many times our representatives have heard this from well-intentioned school board officials who sought to protect their institution’s financial assets by purchasing off-the-shelf software. Cost overruns can be caused by:
Often new tools aren’t ideal for existing systems. When systems are incompatible, school boards are faced with either buying add-on software or allocating additional resources to their IT departments to come up with a patch-work solution. At first blush, it appears feasible but can rapidly spiral out of control, when workflow and operational demand from the system increases.
Off-the shelf software offers many bells and whistles, but many of the features fail to meet the needs of and regulatory requirements for educational institutions. Secured data exports are often prohibited, making it nearly impossible to transition from one system to another. In addition to the frustration and added expense, such a scenario can also lead to legal challenges.
We live in an on-the-go, digital world where nearly everything is accessible from the palms of our hands. Unfortunately, many of the off-the-shelf software products are tethered to one operating system. The new system may run perfectly on Windows-based office computers, but if staff members want to access much needed information from their personal devices – mobile phones on Android or iOS, home computers like MACs, or tablets – the software can be incompatible. Productivity and efficiency can drop dramatically.
Defunct Software Providers
Software companies come and go. What happens if your chosen software provider packs up and goes out of business? It’s challenging enough to operate an effective school board. The potential loss of data access can leave your board, your staff, and students in a precarious situation, requiring additional time, resources, and know-how to get your systems back on track.
Ricoh Offers Trusted Solutions
Ricoh is an award-winning company that has developed solutions for small, medium, and large schools – always with the client’s unique requirements in mind.
Our education specialists are ready to work with you to assess your current system, identify your needs, and provide comprehensive solutions that are cost-effective and user-friendly. Ricoh’s comprehensive software and services address your unique needs and usher you into the 21st century with peace of mind.
Our enterprise content management (ECM) system will:
- Digitize records and securely store them locally or in the Cloud. This greatly simplifies the search and retrieval process for employees, allowing them to accomplish tasks in seconds rather than hours. In the long run, digitizing your paper records will save your school money by eliminating the need to store hard copy documents for compliance purposes.
- Create automated business processes which alert employees when their input is required, reducing the amount of emails/memos that the staff has to write.
- Design a notification-based system for expediting the new employee recruitment process. Through this process, the hiring committee will be able to review, accept, and reject applicants with ease. Additionally, applicants will be kept aware of each step during the recruitment process.
- Enable automated contract management systems to reduce the time employees spend handling paper contracts and tracking down signatures.
- Retain records automatically for the required amount of time. Records will be stored with metadata to avoid accidental deletion, which could lead to noncompliance issues. Records also won’t be stored longer than they are needed, clearing up space for new information.
- Create a secure system for mobile and remote working, which increases efficiency and productivity. This feature is especially useful for employees who travel often and need to access or update information or data on the go. Processes which require simple sign-offs from members of the team can be completed instantly instead of them having to wait until they return to the office.
- Work seamlessly on different platforms and devices that accommodate all users, such as staff, students, parents, and so on.
- Integrate our solutions with your existing software or hardware to give you a seamless transition.
School boards face unique challenges, when it comes to working with different schools and with employees spread across geographic regions. Off-the-shelf software providers don’t understand these issues, but we do. Let Ricoh create a custom solution which works for you – after all, your technology should be as unique and special as your students!
Talk to a Ricoh representative about how we can develop custom solutions for you. Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.