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8 Steps to winning back more time in your day

 

As a director of a child care service you’re busy dealing with day-to-day tasks and simply keeping the wheels turning. There just aren't enough hours in the day to do the stuff that you know you should do, never mind the stuff that you would like to do. Here are steps you can take to clear the decks and make room for those important tasks that are currently getting crowded out or just a bit of time out. 

Topics: Child care centre challenges Child care services challenges

How child care services can connect to their community

Gowrie NSW has compiled a fantastic list of free fact sheets available to child care services to help improve their reach into their local community. Quality Area 6 of the National Quality Standard (NQS) focuses on collaborative partnerships with families and communities so it’s important that all child care services aim to truly connect with their community. By doing so child care services ensure:

Topics: Child care centre challenges Industry trends Child care services challenges National Quality Standard (NQS)

6 tips to implement a new invoice and payment process into your child care service

If you’re suffering from slow payments, late payments and non-payments, the chances are your current invoice and payments system isn’t working as well as it could be. If this is the case, it could be time to develop a new structure. Change is always challenging, for everyone involved, so here’s how to implement things smoothly and keep everyone’s good will.

Topics: Child care centre challenges Child care services challenges Managing finances

What assisted funding is available for child care services?

Your child care business provides an important community service. We all remember the panic when ABC Learning went into administration, as parents – many of them working full time – desperately needed to secure continued child care. Because of this, if your child care centre is struggling due to certain circumstances, there may be government help available. The Federal Government offers information and support to child care services, and this includes grants and financial assistance.

Topics: Insider Child care centre challenges Child care services challenges Managing finances

Encouraging the right payment behaviour from child care parents

Avoiding late payments and bad debt in the first place is far better than getting stuck in a difficult situation. Creating a culture of prompt payment at your child care service will help avoid some of the issues. Bear in mind that you may be one of the lowest priorities for a family struggling financially, despite the important role you play in their life. After all, how can they go to work and earn an income if they don’t have child care? But the reality is that families tend to expect more time and understanding from a business such as a child care provider than from a bank or electricity provider.

Topics: Child care centre challenges Child care services challenges Managing finances

How to become an approved Child Care Benefit service

Are you opening a new child care service? Have you thought about the Child Care Benefit (CCB) and Child Care Rebate (CCR)? Currently all parents are entitled to CCR, this can be paid directly to the parent instead of the service (as can CCB however not many parents request lump sum payments of CCB).  These schemes are definitely something every child care service should be a part of. In this blog I’ll explain what the benefits of being an approved CCB service are, what you need to do to become eligible and what other government funding opportunities are available to you.

Topics: Child care centre challenges Industry trends Child care services challenges

Child care service bad debtors: What are your options?

Child care is an intensely customer-facing business and one built on trust. You are looking after people’s children, and you have extensive face-to-face contact with parents. This makes it all the more challenging when parents don’t pay. You still have to greet them each day in a friendly way, and discuss their child’s progress, while knowing that behind the scenes you’re having to escalate measures against them. No one wants to get to the stage of having bad debtors. You should of course do everything you can to avoid it. But at some point, you may have to call in your debts in a more formal way.

Topics: Child care centre challenges Child care services challenges Managing finances

Hiring a child care worker: Beware of under-skilled graduates

In a national strategic review the Australian Skills Quality Authority (ASQA) revealed that some registered training organisations (RTOs) offering early childhood education and care training are producing ‘graduates’ in 25 weeks. This is half the minimum length of time recommended in the Australian Qualifications Framework. Not only does this create a potentially unsafe environment for the children in their care, it leaves the ‘graduates’ heavily under-qualified and inexperienced, undermines other RTOs that are offering high-quality courses and places child care services in a compromising position for when they are hiring a child care worker. Child care training is competency-based training and certificate III courses should take one to two years to complete, not 25 weeks.

Topics: Child care centre challenges Industry trends Child care services challenges National Quality Standard (NQS)

6 tips for child care services: How to get paid faster

You’ve established that you have a slow payment problem at your child care service. While most of your parents pay eventually, a number of them pay so late that you’re struggling to pay your own bills. It feels like you’re always a step behind: you have just enough to pay your staff, then everything else has to wait until the fees finally trickle in. So how can you try and get paid faster? 

Topics: Child care centre challenges Child care services challenges Managing finances

4 steps to choosing the right CCMS software for your child care service

At the time of writing this blog, there are 27 registered Child Care Management System software providers in Australia. For a child care director who is either starting a new service or has existing CCMS software and is thinking about switching to another provider, there’s A LOT to choose from. Coupled with the fact that all of the CCMS software providers structure their offerings differently from each other, it can be hard to compare providers. All registered providers meet the minimum standard set by the Department of Social Services to submit information to make claims against Child Care Benefits, Child Care Rebate, Inclusion Support etc. So which one do you choose and how do you know which one suits your child care business best? This blog post outlines four steps that can help you easily compare your top choices and come out the other end with a clear winner.

Topics: Child care centre challenges Child care services challenges