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Butterflies Child and Baby Care Services – Case Study

Butterflies Child and Baby Care Services – Case Study

Butterflies Child and Baby Care Services in London has been running for nine years, catering for around 50 children. Butterflies’ ethos is ‘every child matters’ and every child is special and equally important. The setting operates in beautiful grounds with plenty of outdoor space.

We spoke with nursery owner Danielle Melville to find out how she’s been getting on as a new user of Abacus.

1. How long have you been using Abacus?

We’re relatively new to Abacus, but have been using it officially for three months.

2. How easy did you find the setup process?

Setting up a new system for any business has its challenges and although staff found it difficult to start using to begin with, the support and training provided by the Parenta team has been excellent. Now staff are much more comfortable using the system.

3. What feature do you like most about Abacus?

Staff at Butterflies particularly like the mail merge option as this has made communication with parents much easier and we’ve had positive reviews from parents regarding this. We’re also looking forward to being able to track at the touch of a button [with an add-on to Abacus called Footsteps], once all the information regarding the children’s development has been put into the system.

4. How would you describe the support you get from our team?

I’d describe it as excellent. There is no query the team cannot help with and whenever we’ve spoken to them, they always go above and beyond to help us.

5. Would you recommend Abacus to another childcare provider?

Yes – in fact we’ve recommended it to others already!

To find out more about Butterflies Child and Baby Care Services, visit their website or find them on Facebook.


Want to find out more about what Abacus can do for your nursery? Book a free demo today!

 

Little Adventurers Nursery – Case Study

Little Adventurers Nursery – Case Study

Little Adventurers Nursery is based in Upminster, Essex. They have 5 rooms catering for children from 0-5 years old which is split into Discoverers (0-2 years), Explorers (2-3 years) and Adventurers (3-5 years).

LAN

Being a newly established nursery, it was important for Little Adventurers to find management software which would meet their needs as soon as they opened their doors. We spoke with the setting to find out what made them choose Abacus and what benefits this has brought them:

How long have you been using Abacus for and why did you choose it?

Little Adventurers is a brand new, individual and family run nursery which we have been developing for 3 years.  For us, it was important that we had a system which would underpin and enable us to operationally perform to our ethos and aims – to provide the local community with high quality childcare.  After demonstrations and research into other software options, it quickly became apparent that Abacus is elite in this field, giving us sophisticated software to support our setting right from the start.

How easy did you find the set up process?

Setting up any system as part of a new business has its challenges – a comprehensive and flexible package needs time for staff to become familiar with it but Parenta have an excellent customer service team, who were extremely helpful and knowledgeable about their systems.  Prior to opening, we were given tutorials using ‘dummy’ information for staff to become familiar with the package.  We have therefore been able to open our nursery with systems up and running in the sure knowledge that as we grow, the software will really come into its own  – providing us with templates, accounting, rostering and ratio calculations to support the operational side of our business.

Were there any welcome surprises?

There has been no hidden shocks from Abacus – it is a very user friendly system and easy to navigate around.  A real bonus is that the Parenta staff are available for support up to 8 pm at night and furthermore, they are so friendly and nice.

How have your staff found using Abacus?

Our Deputy Manager who has been practising with Dayshare finds the system user friendly and easy to navigate compared to other systems she has used; she is quite comfortable with all the elements that she has looked at so far.

How would you describe the support you get from our team?

The support from the whole team has been fantastic.  Right from our initial meeting and overview of Parenta with Richelle, to our many questions as we start using the system for real – the team are professional, knowledgeable and you never feel like you are bothering them or are asking too many questions!

[pullquote]“It quickly became apparent that Abacus is elite in this field, giving us sophisticated software to support our setting right from the start…” – Little Adventurers Nursery [/pullquote]

What feature do you like most about it?

There are many impressive features with Abacus – especially the flexibility.  For example, invoices can be emailed directly from the system, with tailor written letters that can be customer based or date/ month based.  It allows you to change the letter selection that the invoice gets attached to, allowing you to tailor the system to meet your own needs.  This flexibility is a great advantage for settings. It’s also been really helpful having all the necessary information about the children in one place without taking up valuable space in filing cabinets!

Similarly, although we have not yet had time to look at all the reporting facilities –they are all very flexible and all encompassing.  You can report from the customer, debtor, staff, personal (holiday & sickness) basis as well as staff to children ratio reports.

Would you recommend Abacus to another childcare provider?

Obviously, we are only a little way down the road using Abacus but from our initial findings and use of the system we all agree that Abacus will be a great asset in helping to make our nursery a success and very much part of our high quality service.  We are extremely impressed and look forward to using all aspects of the software as our nursery develops.

To find out more about Little Adventurers Nursery, visit their website or find them on Facebook.



 

Banana Moon Day Nursery – Case Study

Banana Moon Day Nursery – Case Study

“Abacus has cut down on the planning and preparation work in our nurseries by 50%….” – Carly Garrett, Franchise Operations Manager at Banana Moon

Banana Moon is an Early Years’ franchise with 19 nurseries throughout in the UK. They established their business in 2006 and have a strong focus on “Banana Moon” world and the characters which belong to it. Their ethos is to be the best at what they do and to provide the pinnacle in childcare.Banana Moon Day Nursery logo

Their proposition is unique because they give franchisees a high level of support combined with a proven business model to ensure all their nurseries operate to continuously high standards.

We spoke with Carly Garrett, Franchise Operations Manager, who oversaw Abacus being implemented in the first four franchisee nurseries that were set up.  Carly and her colleague Becks act as the initial contact point for any franchise managers who need assistance with running their childcare business.

What was life like before you had Abacus?

Life before Abacus was really frustrating– it was difficult for us to see where payments were coming from and we soon realised that we needed a user friendly system to help us.

How long have you been using Abacus for and why did you choose it?

We have been using Abacus for two years now and have rolled it out in all of our nurseries.

Previously, we used two other software companies but found neither of them to be very flexible and they did not meet our needs. We decided that we wanted a system in place which would grow with us and were excited by what Celeste (Business Consultant at Parenta) was offering. Abacus seemed to tick all our boxes!

How easy did you find the set up process?

The initial transfer of data from our old systems to Abacus was really easy. I remember a lady called Amy at Parenta helped transfer it all over to the new system for us.

To give you some idea of how easy it is to set up: all our new nursery franchises use Abacus as soon as they are up and running!

How much time do you think it has saved you?

In terms of percentages, I think it is fair to say that Abacus has cut down planning and preparation work in our nurseries by 50% once the system is put in place and ready to go. Before that point, we had manual spreadsheets to keep track of information for 140 children!

Were there any welcome surprises?

For us, a pleasant surprise that we found with Abacus was the fact that it could reconcile childcare vouchers. Apart from that, it handles all aspects of staff management really well too. Even two years on, we are still finding out new things we like about it!

 How have your staff found using Abacus?

Our staff have found Abacus really easy to access and use; you can’t really go wrong with it! Not only that, there is such a large support network in place  – everything from user manuals to Parenta’s dedicated support team being on hand to answer any questions you have.

How would you describe the support you get from our team?

We have been on the phone many times to the support team. They are always very friendly and go over and above what we need them to do. It’s also clear to me that the team members communicate really well with each other because each time we call, the person on the other end always knows what the previous conversation was about.

What feature do you like most about it?

There are so many features we like about Abacus; one thing I personally like is that you don’t have to click through many different tabs to find what you are looking for on the system. It’s really user friendly and very colourful, which just makes you want to use it even more!

As a nursery franchise, we also benefit from the fact that Abacus carries out group reporting, so you see everything at a glance.

Would you recommend Abacus to another childcare provider?

We would definitely recommend Abacus to another childcare provider – both a small independent nursery and a larger chain of nurseries would benefit from using it.

To find out more about Banana Moon Day Nursery, please visit www.bananamoondaynursery.co.uk  


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Farley Outdoor Learning Nursery School – Case Study

Farley Outdoor Learning Nursery School – Case Study

“We looked around at other management software but for us, Abacus was perfect because it ticked all our boxes….” – Gary Palmer, Director at Farley Nursery School

Farley Nursery school is a private nursery based in the Wiltshire countryside. It was set up in 2006 by husband and wife team Sue and Gary Palmer and has since won several accolades, including Outstanding Business of the Year in 2009.Farley Outdoor Nursery School Logo

The nursery has a unique Scandanavian approach to Early Year’s education which means children will spend much of their time outdoors exploring; gaining awareness and respect for the environment. The setting cares for up to 70 children from birth to 8 years of age.

We caught up with Gary Palmer to see what he thought of our management software:

What was life like before you had Abacus?

Eight years ago, my wife Sue would have to set time aside every evening to manually process reports and print invoices for each child to send to parents. It was not easy to do and took up quite a bit of her time!

At what point did you realise you needed software?

The trigger point was the increasing number of children we had. We were spending quite a few hours processing everything manually and we realised it was just not worth doing anymore. That’s when we started looking for a software solution.

How long have you been using Abacus for and why did you choose it?

We started using Abacus six years ago and we chose it because we have an ethos of running our business efficiently, so it seemed like the perfect solution to help us achieve this.

How easy did you find the set up process?

To give you some idea: we are now using Abacus in our third nursery! The set up process has been very easy and straightforward. Not only that, you get good support from the Parenta team.

How much time do you think it has saved you?

Once the software has all been set up and is working, it definitely saves you time. I would say it saves you at least a few hours per week.

Were there any welcome surprises?

We are always finding things we love about the software, and there are new updates released all the time. Personally, I did not realise that Abacus could take care of the staff details and managing that side of the business, as well as taking care of planning ahead and invoicing parents.

How have your staff found it?

One of our admin team, Jo, has been with us for 2 years and she says “Abacus is really easy to use, you can’t fault the support you get” and she has no complaints whatsoever.

How would you describe the support you get from our team?

The Parenta support team are really friendly whenever we call to ask for help, and they always email us back really quickly too whenever we have a problem.

What feature do you like most about it?

As a business owner, I love to be able to see what money is coming in at a glance, so the financial reporting side of Abacus is really important to me. Other than that, the staff have found it really easy to navigate.

Would you recommend Abacus to another childcare provider?

We have looked around at other management software, but for us Abacus was perfect because it ticked all our boxes. I would definitely recommend it to another childcare provider looking for a management software solution.

To find out more about Farley Nursery school, please visit http://www.farleynurseryschool.com/


Request a free demonstration of our nursery software

Abacus update from Boys and Girls Nursery

Abacus update from Boys and Girls Nursery

Many thanks to Natasha Kirby from Boys & Girls Nursery for this recommendation:

“Boys & Girls Nursery have used Parenta’s Abacus nursery management software since December 2007, initially supporting one setting and since expanding to four.

As we have grown we have found Abacus to be an invaluable part of our business in terms of reliability, user friendliness and adaptability to our requirements.

The Parenta support team are just that, supportive and responsive, exactly what you need from your nursery management software provider. Abacus has a wide range of reports and functions that assist in the day to day running of our nurseries, and the future financial planning and forecasting have been invaluable!

Boys & Girls Nursery would recommend Abacus as the most user friendly and reliable nursery management system in the market.”

Request a free demonstration of our nursery software

 

Polly Anna’s Day Nursery – Case Study

Polly Anna’s Day Nursery – Case Study

Modernising their administration system: Polly Anna’s Day Nursery Case Study

Polly Annas NurseryPolly Anna’s Nursery found that their former nursery management system had been left behind with the introduction of new procedures and practices, particularly the changes to the Early Years Free Entitlement. After researching the market, they realised that Abacus offered exactly what they wanted and more.

Equipped with a modern, time-saving administration system, invoicing demanded considerably less time, even being completed whilst on holiday in Australia!
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