From Play School to Pay School
Something we don’t always think about is the challenge faced by many schools regarding the task of collecting payments. To parents the note home in the school bag is all too familiar be it for bus trips, voluntary contributions, swimming lessons etc. It’s often a pain for parents to have cash or a cheque book to hand to pay the school. The sector has seen some movement over the last few years in terms of payment solutions coming on-line to help in this area but there remains a challenge for many across both primary and secondary schools. There is no doubt that like all sectors, education will move predominantly to electronic payment over the coming years. There is also no doubt that schools need options. If for a moment we consider education as a business, it being responsible for the foundation of future economic prosperity and personal development, then it’s imperative for schools to maintain a healthy cash flow and are afforded the time to focus on their core business which is the education of really important people.
Why electronic payments in schools?
To date most if not all payment solutions available to schools are card based, allowing parents to pay their school via debit or credit card. It’s great to see systems like EasyPaymentsPlus and Way2Pay enabling schools to take payment electronically and are helping to address the issue. However, like many businesses know, a facility to accept card payments comes at a cost and brings with it some work in terms of payment reconciliation. One task when looking to employ an electronic payment solution is evaluating the cost and return on investment. Yes, many schools are not commercially focused like businesses are, that’s not their thing, but moving to electronic payments must make sense. To weigh up the benefits one must review the drivers for going electronic:
– The administration effort in tracking payments, who has and hasn’t paid
– The security related risk in terms of holding cash
– The effort required to lodge cheques and cash, the latter now only accepted by banks on certain days of the week
– The rising costs associated with cash and cheques
– A need to become electronic-enabled as parents stop using cheques and carrying cash and look to pay electronically
– Fully audited processes with complete record of payments
Like any entity, taking time to consider the drivers brings to light the value an electronic payment channel can deliver.
Debapay, a real option for mobile payment solutions
In pursuit of simplicity we are focused not only on what works for the school but what parents, as payers, will respond to. The DebaPay system enables schools to send out payment requests electronically to parents for any item, some of which are mentioned above. On receipt of the request onto their mobile or tablet/PC the parent can simply approve the payment or schedule the payment for a preferred date. People are connected to make this exchange easy for all involved. The parent remains in complete control of every payment while the school has full line of sight on incoming cash while recording every interaction.
We’re providing schools with another real option regarding electronic payment solutions by offering an alternative to cash, cheque and cards. Our aim is to make cash flow and to expedite the demise of the note home and the related carrying of cash by children to school. The reaction to Debapay by the schools now planning to use the system has been very positive and we’re looking forward to helping the education sector with the move to electronic payments.
If you would like to learn more about the DebaPay system and the value it can deliver please talk with us. Otherwise perhaps we’ll meet at the 2016 IPPN Expo in January
phone: 01 5934240