Three Steps to Building Efficient School Fee Management Systems

EducationWorld December 2021 | Magazine Spotlight Feature

Danish Kundra, Co-founder at SchoolPad

In the past eight years since inception, I have been majorly involved with schools in helping them develop their fee management processes and systems to make fee collection more streamlined and errorfree. During this journey, I discovered that fee records in schools don’t match the amounts in bank account statements. With reminders not being sent on time, parents don’t remember the exact fee amount and pay incorrect amounts. The list goes on and on.

Working closely with a large number of reputed schools enabled me and my SchoolPad team to find innovative solutions to all these operational difficulties. In this article, I have consolidated all these learnings into a simple 3-step process that will help schools build an efficient, error-free and reliable fee management system.

1. Build Clarity: This, in my opinion, is the most crucial step which takes care of most of the problems during the fee collection process. Some issues of concern are: Who will be collecting the fee? What will be the application process for giving concessions? Who will approve the concession and who can apply for it? Who can exempt fines? What is the fine exemption process? Who assigns the transport fee? What is the process to opt for transport fee? And so on.

Basically, school fee collection teams need a flow chart that clearly explains all the steps and roles. If some concerted 3 Steps to Building Efficient School Fee Management Systems effort can be put into this issue specifically and some clarity is built through proper training and documentation, then schools will surely see the results. A system will be created that will automatically take care of the accuracy of school fee collections and improve the payment experience for parents.

2. Reconcile regularly: This is the second most important step, especially when you have multiple modes of fee payment (online, bank deposit, cheque, cash etc.). Keeping a record of the receipts is just one part. It is essential to have a process in place to reconcile the records of the previous week, once in a week.

Schools can select a day according to its settlement dates, considering cheque or online fee payments, so that they can reconcile the records of the previous week and match the amounts with internal reports and bank statements. This process will help schools fix all inconsistencies.

3. Monitoring: Monitoring builds reliability and trust in the entire fee collection process, which is a significant concern of the school management. It is pertinent to develop a reporting system that generates daily reports for the school management. These reports should highlight the critical elements of the fee-collection process such as receipts cancelled or re-generated, concessions given along with details, backdated receipts generated, etc. This data will bring more transparency into the system making it more reliable. Now, these could be a set of manual reports presented daily to the management or automated ones mailed through the fee collection software to key management responsible for monitoring fee collections.

Building systems and processes takes time but to build and grow a school, it is essential to have strong processes and systems so that school managements and owners can focus on the growth of the school rather than spend precious time on fixing daily operational issues.

I hope you found this article helpful. In case you are facing similar issues in your school, do reach out to me at [email protected] I would love to have a chat with you and work with you to resolve these issues and make your life easier.

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